Pant plundered 13 fours and two sixes during his breathtaking 101 off 118 balls on Day Two of the fourth Test against England here. The reverse sweep off James Anderson was easily the most outrageous shot he played on the day.
When asked about that particular stroke, Pant said: “You have to premeditate reverse-flicks, but if luck is going your way you can take the odd chance. I get the license 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 am happy.”
Pant came in when India batsmen had been choked for runs. The 23-year-old displayed tremendous game sense to bide his time before taking on a worn-out attack to the cleaners. The southpaw, who not so long ago was criticised for his reckless approach, said that he needed to be cautious considering the match situation.
“If the bowlers are bowling well, respect them and take the singles. That was on my mind. I like to play the situation and I just see the ball and react. That is the USP (unique selling point) of my game,” he said. Pant anchored India’s innings, sharing 41 runs with opener Rohit Sharma and then forging a 113-run partnership with all-rounder Washington Sundar.
“The plan was to build a partnership when I joined Rohit. That was the only thing on my mind. I was thinking that I would assess the pitch and then play my shots,” said Pant. “The team plan was to get to 206, past the England total, and then get as many runs as possible.”