This is immense improvement in Pant’s wicket-keeping.
Not much cricket was played on the second and third day of the ongoing first Test between England and India. But the two teams were greeted with sunshine at Nottingham on Saturday (fourth day) giving visitors the best chance to go for the kill having bossed the match right from the word go. And despite the ball not swinging much like it did in the first innings, the duo of Mohammed Siraj and Jasprit Bumrah struck once each in the first hour.
The former sent back Rory Burns with a regulation edge to the wicket-keeper while it took a special effort from Rishabh Pant to take a catch offered by Zak Crawley. It also highlighted a stark improvement in the youngster’s wicketkeeping compared to the last tour of England when he made his Test debut.
It happened in the 17th over when Bumrah ran in and delivered a fifth stump line delivery. Zak Crawley, with his early shuffle, got close to the ball and despite it being away from the stump, had to play at it only to get an edge. The ball was certainly a litle bit away from Rishabh Pant but he dived to his right to grab a brilliant catch.
The catch has a lot to do with his improved wicketkeeping technique. He has dropped similar catches before with his early shuffle towards the leg-side but this time, he was perfectly placed and timed his dive well to send back Crawley for just six.
Here’s the video:
Bumrah does a Zak by setting up the wicket of Crawley! ☝🏽
India are forward with each wicket 🔥
— Sony Sports (@SonySportsIndia) August 7, 2021
England’s top-order woes continue
England’s top-order woes, meanwhile, continue in this Test as well. The trio of Rory Burns, Dom Sibley and Zak Crawley haven’t been consistent enough despite playing for a better part of last two years. The opposition teams have time and again found a flaw in their techniques and in turn, England have been losing their top three with not many on the board putting pressure on the rest of the batsmen.
Also, their scores with the bat in the last few matches haven’t been encouraging as the team has struggled to cross even 200. In the first innings of the ongoing Test match against India, they got bundled out for just 183 runs.