After India's dismal show with the bat on Day 1 of the third Test match at Headingley, Leeds, where the team were bowled out for 78 runs, wicketkeeper batter Rishabh Pant has backed the side's decision to bat first. While it was Virat Kohli's first toss win in as many as eight Tests, a tricky decision awaited as the pitch appeared brown despite overhead conditions and recent data indicating that the wicket could get better & easier to bat on with the passage of time.
Eventually, though Kohli opted to bat first which proved to be a disastrous call as none of their batters seemed to apply themselves at the middle. Rohit Sharma ended up being the top-scorer with 19 and got out to an ugly stroke at the end unable to decide whether to go for the big shot or defend as he was beginning to run out of partners.
Sometimes it doesn't go well: Pant
"It's part and parcel of the game. Every day the batting unit is giving hundred per cent but sometimes it doesn't go well," Pant said at the virtual press conference after the end of Day 1.
"In the morning, the wicket was slightly on the softer side and they bowled in good areas. We could have applied ourselves better. We can learn from it and only move on. That's all we can do as cricketers. You learn from your mistakes and improve," he added.
Once we have decided we are going to bat first, we are going to back our decision: Pant
When quizzed whether batting first was a tricky decision, Pant said he did not think so.
"Whatever decision we take, we take as a team. So once we have decided we are going to bat first, we are going to back our decision. Yes we could have applied much better but we can't keep on thinking too much about the toss," the 23-year-old said.
Furthermore, Pant stated that he views it as an opportunity to bail the team out of trouble when he has to walk in early after the fall of early wickets. "...If the top-order collapses and you get an opportunity, I see it as an opportunity that if you can bail the team out of that situation, you are going to do wonders in your life, as a cricketer," he said.