'If the crowd like it I'm happy': Pant on his reverse flick against Anderson | England in India 2020-21

In the 21 years since Jimmy Anderson made his debut in professional cricket, you would think has faced just about everything the game has...


In the 21 years since Jimmy Anderson made his debut in professional cricket, you would think has faced just about everything the game has to throw at him, but even he has never been treated quite like he was by Rishabh Pant in Ahmedabad on Friday evening.

When Anderson took the second new ball, Pant charged down the pitch and hit him over mid-off for one four, slapped him through cover for another and then – best, and most extraordinary yet – hit him for a reverse flick over the slips for a third. It was a shot straight out of Twenty20 cricket.

Apparently we, and Anderson, can look forward to more like it. “I like to play the situation and I just see the ball and react, that’s the unique selling point of my game,” Pant said afterwards. “You have to premeditate reverse-flicks, but if luck is going your way you can take the odd chance.

“I get the licence most of the time, but I have to assess the situation and take the game head on. I like to make the team win and if the crowd is entertained by that, I’m happy.”

No doubt Anderson will be delighted, too.

England were left to rue a close lbw decision in the over before tea, when Dom Bess hit Pant on the back leg. Pant survived even through the review showed the ball was hitting the bails, because the margins of the ball-tracking technology are confined to the stumps themselves.

“I’m not going to harp on about umpiring decisions,” said England’s spin bowling coach, Jeetan Patel, “but if it had gone our way, which it could have easily, we could be in a different state right now.”

Patel, who had just been appointed as England’s full-time spin bowling coach, agreed that Bess would be feeling “quite down” but pointed out he “is very young and he’s still learning how to bowl with a red ball at Test level, which is very difficult”.

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Newsrust - US Top News: 'If the crowd like it I'm happy': Pant on his reverse flick against Anderson | England in India 2020-21
'If the crowd like it I'm happy': Pant on his reverse flick against Anderson | England in India 2020-21
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