He batted himself into the record books as he scored the fastest hundred in first-class cricket. Not only that, Rishabh Pant has had a staggering season so far having scored 799 runs from seven innings at an astounding average of 133.16 and a strike-rate of 113.17.
The young lad from Delhi has shown his prowess in domestic cricket and is gearing up to play at the highest level.
“I have been working hard a lot, I worked on many aspects and prepared well for the season. I think my hard work is paying off,” Pant said speaking exclusively to thestatesman.com.
“I didn’t do well in the last season but Tarak Sinha sir, who is my coach, has helped me a lot. All the credit for my success goes to him,” he added.
The 19-year-old has already scored four hundreds in the season, including two in a single match against Jharkhand.
In the five games of the Ranji Trophy this season he has hit 44 sixes.
Pant’s sequences of scores this season are 146, 308, 24, 9, 60, 117, and 135.
En route his record breaking ton, Pant eclipsed a 28-year-old record set by former Tamil Nadu opener VB Chandrasekhar, who reached the three-figure mark in 56 balls against Rest of India during the Irani Cup match of the 1988-89 series.
“I am happy with my performance but do not want to get complacent. Whatever I play, I just concentrate on performing well and try not to think about anything else,” the 19-year-old said.
Pant also played a few promising knocks in the last Indian Premier League (IPL) season for Delhi Daredevils. In one of the matches, he was given the man of the match trophy for his match-winning effort.
Earlier this season, he was not picked for India A's tour of Australia and admitted that it acted as a trigger to score tons of runs now.
“I was hurt for not getting selected for India A, but I took it positively and promised myself to score more and more runs so that no one can ignore me,” Pant said.
When asked about his ultimate aim and if he has set any target for himself, he said, “In our club (Sonnet club in Delhi), only if a player has played Test cricket, he is considered as an international player. So, my ultimate aim is to play Tests for India,” adding, “But, yes limited over cricket is equally important.”
Every player has a role model in his life and Pant is no different.
“I used to watch Adam Glichrist earlier; I follow Dhoni bhai (MS Dhoni) now. Not to forget Virat bhaiya (Virat Kohli) who is now everyone’s idol,” the Delhi player said.
Currently, with a win and three drawn matches, the Delhi team is third in Group B in the Ranji Trophy.
“I don’t think about future and remain in present only and don’t know about Delhi’s chances to win the trophy. We are currently third and positive about winning,” Pant signed off.
By Abhishek Mahajan