India has been one of the dominant teams in the World Test Championship. They finished at the top spot in the first cycle only to lose in the finals. India is currently placed third in the points table of the second cycle. Despite this being an era where the bowlers have dominated, India has won quite a few games purely on its batting merits. These knocks not just helped India recover but helped them win from near-impossible situations. Here in this article, we talk about knocks played by Indian batsmen.
We look at the 5 best knocks played by Indian batsmen in World Test Championship:
#5 Shubman Gill (91) vs Australia, Gabba – 2021
He was playing just his third Test match. Opening the innings in the cauldron that is Gabba, Shubman Gill came of age. India lost Rohit Sharma early on day 5 chasing 329. It didn’t deter Gill though. He saw off the new ball watchfully. Gill slowly came into his own at the stroke of lunch igniting hopes of a famous Indian win. He took on Mitchell Starc post-lunch in a 20-runs over. Gill set the stage beautifully for the middle order to take over. He missed out on a well-deserving century. But his 91 was worth its weight in gold.
#4 Rohit Sharma (127) vs England, Oval – 2021
England had taken a lead of 99 runs against India in the fourth Test at the Oval. In what was a bowlers-friendly series, it appeared the lead was beyond India’s realm. Rohit Sharma along with KL Rahul went about the business in their usual fashion. Sharma reigned himself in to play what remains his best Test knock. He scored a fine century (127) to set up a huge total for England. India went on to win the Test comfortably. It remains Sharma’s lone Test century overseas.
#3 Rishabh Pant (146) vs England, Edgbaston – 2022
There was a lot of chatter about England’s newfound approach to Test cricket. They were the ones who were headlining the pre-match buzz. At 98-5, England had every reason to believe that this match too was going their way. But walking into bat at number 5, Rishabh Pant had other ideas.
In what has been a short yet stellar Test career so far, Pant produced another overseas knock for ages. He smashed a bullish England attack to all parts of the ground. If India stands a chance to create history in England, it is because of this man.
#2 Ajinkya Rahane (112) vs Australia, Melbourne – 2020
India was coming off a humiliating drubbing in the first Test. They had been bowled out for 36 at Adelaide. Their captain Virat Kohli was heading back. The onus fell on stand-in captain, Ajinkya Rahane to rally his troops. India had lost three wickets after a steady start.
Rahane stitched crucial partnerships with Hanuma Vihari and Pant. But it was his partnership with Ravindra Jadeja that sealed the game in India’s favour. It was one of the finest knocks played by a visiting captain on Australian shores. Rahane’s knock (112) made India believe they can do something magical in this series.
#1 Rishabh Pant (89*) vs Australia, Gabba – 2021
It is no coincidence that three knocks from the iconic Border-Gavaskar series in 2021 feature on this list. Rishabh Pant’s histrionics in Sydney Test lifted the spirits of a team hanging on the barest of hopes. It was only fair that he would be the one who would hit the winning runs.
Walking into bat at number 5, Pant played arguably the best knock of his Test career. His immense self-belief came to the fore as he conjured defining partnerships with Mayank Agarwal and Washington Sundar. Pant spared none of the Aussie bowlers. Pant’s special knock broke Australia’s supremacy at their fortress, Gabba. World cricket had a new superstar!