The 2020-21 Border-Gavaskar Trophy will always be remembered for the way a young Indian squad made a comeback and stunned Australia in their own backyard. Australia bowled India out for just 36 runs in the second innings of the day/night Test and took a 1-0 lead in the 4-match series. Rishabh Pant did not play that game in Australia.
The team management picked him in the playing XI for the second Test, and the result was clear. Pant dominated Australia and even played mind games with the opposition players from behind the stumps.
Pant played the remaining two Tests against Australia as well and played a game-changing role for the visitors. The wicket-keeper batter helped India win the Brisbane Test and complete a historic 2-1 series win in Border-Gavaskar Trophy.
Since then, Rishabh has been a regular member of the Indian squad in all three formats of cricket. However, before that series, he had lost his place in two formats. KL Rahul took over the wicket-keeping responsibilities in ODIs and T20Is, while Wriddhiman Saha did that job in Tests.
I had to make India win: Rishabh Pant recalls historic tour of Australia
Speaking to Indian women’s cricket team player Jemimah Rodrigues on the Dream Big Story, Rishabh Pant recalled the 2020-21 Australian tour and said that he had a bad neck followed by an unbearable bruised elbow. But he did not give up. Here’s what he had to say:
“I wasn’t talking to anyone, not even family or friends. I needed my own space. I just wanted to give my 200% each and every day. I was just telling myself, there’s no choice but to do it. I had to make India win. There was nothing else for me to focus on but my game.”
Pant decided to change his mindset, and the result was clear as he emerged as a hero for India Down Under.