Best Performances of Rishabh Pant in IPL
Back in 2016, when Delhi Capitals spent INR 1.9 crores on Rishabh Pant, interest in the wicket-keeper batsman was high. Everyone was aware of his explosive batting, and many deemed him as the perfect replacement for Mahendra Singh Dhoni in limited-overs, once he will hang his boots.
Now that he has, Pant is actually the expected limited-overs replacement for him. His career has had a few lows, but most of it has been highs. His natural ability to send a cricket ball to dwarf Pluto, and his agile wicket-keeping, forced Capitals into retaining him for INR 8 crores in 2018. He repaid them by becoming their highest run-scorer of the same season. Pant has many marvelous knocks under his belt in IPL. Let us have a look at the top 5 innings of Rishabh Pant in IPL:
#5) 85 Runs in (48) Against Royal Challengers Bangalore
As stated previously, Pant was outlandishly brilliant in the 2018 season. An average of over 50, and a strike rate of over 170 might be common, but an amalgamation of both is incredibly rare. This is what he achieved in 2018, where he played knocks such as this 85 against Royal Challengers Bangalore.
Batting first at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Delhi lost both their openers before even they could reach 25 runs. Under dire circumstances, Pant and Shreyas Iyer built up a great partnership. Iyer was dismissed in the 14th over, but Pant kept going and lost his wicket in the very last over of the innings. His innings of 85 runs contained 6 fours and 7 sixes.
#4) 78* Runs in (36) Against Rajasthan Royals
Our next innings on the list of the top 5 innings of Rishabh Pant in IPL is from 2019. Though he was not as successful as 2018 this time, he was still pretty much a visual treat. In this match at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium, Rajasthan Royals batted first and amassed a huge total of 191.
This time, Shikhar Dhawan and Prithvi Shaw gave Delhi a brilliant start, but Delhi then lost two wickets in consecutive overs. Pant once again built a partnership, this time with another youngster in Shaw, and set up a 64-run third-wicket stand. After Shaw’s dismissal, Pant kept going and eventually took Delhi over the line. His knock of 78 runs included six fours and four sixes.
#3) 78* Runs in (27) Against Mumbai Indians
One criticism of Pant was that he tended to throw away his wicket cheaply often. But in last season, he remained not out on quite a few occasions. Like the previous entry, this match against Mumbai Indians is also one such example where Pant did not get out.
This time, Delhi Capitals batted first in the game at Wankhede Stadium. He batted lower down the order, in number 5. By the time he was called upon, the foundation was already laid by Colin Ingram and Shikhar Dhawan. His job was to come and demolish, and he did just that. In just 27 balls, he scored 78 runs, with the help of seven fours and as many sixes. His innings helped Delhi reach the colossal total of 213.
#2) 97 Runs in (43) Against Gujarat Lions
2016 was the season when Rishabh Pant made his debut, but he was lukewarm in that edition. But after a year of experience in his kitty, Pant unleashed the beast in him in 2017. In this match against Gujarat Lions at the Arun Jaitley Stadium, Delhi bowled first and conceded a staggering 208.
Delhi lost opener Karun Nair early, but Pant came in at three and set up a partnership with Sanju Samson. Together, they added 143 runs for the second-wicket stand. Pant lost his wicket an over after Samson was dismissed, but his job was nearly done. Scoring 97 runs from just 43 balls with 9 sixes, he had put Delhi in the driver’s seat. Shreyas Iyer and Corey Anderson managed to guide the Capitals home from there.
#1) 128* Runs in (63) Against Sunrisers Hyderabad
The last entry on our list of the top 5 innings of Rishabh Pant in IPL features a knock that was the highest individual score in IPL 2018. This special knock unfolded when Capitals took on Sunrisers Hyderabad at the Arun Jaitley Stadium.
The hosts had a horrific start and lost 3 wickets with just 43 runs on the board. But Iyer calmed things down alongside Harshal Patel. Once settled, he changed his gear to fifth and played all sorts of shots, from classy to most bizarre. He scored his maiden IPL century, hitting 15 fours and 7 sixes in the process. Unfortunately for Delhi, their current batsman Shikhar Dhawan played a brilliant knock for Sunrisers Hyderabad back then, to register a win.