Pant was unaware of Smith ‘scuffing’ incident, says India batting coach
India’s batting coach Vikram Rathour has played down the much-talked-about Steve Smith pitch scuffing incident, claiming that Rishabh Pant was not even aware of what happened to the crease.
Smith came under scathing criticism from the former cricketers like England’s Michael Vaughan, Darren Gough and India’s Virender Sehwag on social media after video suggested Smith was scuffing up the area around the batting crease on day five of the third Test between India and Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
While many questioned the Australia batsman for his gamesmanship, Rathour said neither they were aware of the incident nor it did have any effect on Pant’s batting.
“Basically, we didn’t even know about the incident. We knew only after the game when the media picked it up. As a batsman, Rishabh Pant wasn’t even aware. I wouldn’t like to comment as it hardly mattered,” Rathour said ahead of the fourth and final Test in Brisbane, starting Friday (January 15).
With his 97 off 118 balls with the help of 12 fours and 3 sixes in the fourth innings of Sydney Test, Pant became the youngest wicket-keeper to score fifty-plus runs in the fourth innings of a Test match in Australia.
Meanwhile Smith also spoke up on the controversial incident, claiming that he was shocked and disappointed to see the reaction he had been at the receiving end of.
“I have been quite shocked and disappointed by the reaction to this. It’s something I do in games to visualise where we are bowling, how the batter is playing our bowlers and then out of habit I always mark centre,” Smith said.