India debutant Rishabh Pant has made a unique beginning to his Test cricket career, adding a rare feat with the gloves to an exciting start with the bat.
Pant, playing his first Test for India in the third match of their series against England at Trent Bridge, took five catches in the hosts' first innings – becoming the sixth 'keeper and first Indian to complete five (or more) dismissals in an innings on Test debut in the process.
He took catches to remove Alastair Cook, Keaton Jennings, Ollie Pope, Chris Woakes and Adil Rashid as England were bowled out for 161 on the second day – leaving India well in control heading into day three.
Only two other players have taken the first three wickets of a match on debut – Australia’s Tim Paine against Pakistan in 2010, and India’s Bharath Reddy against England in 1979.
He is the fourth Indian wicketkeeper to take five matches on Test debut, joining Naren Tamhane (v Pakistan in 1955), Kiran More (v England in 1986) and Naman Ojha (v Sri Lanka in 2015).
Earlier in the match, Pant became just the 12th player – and the first Indian – to hit a six as their first scoring shot in their Test career.
The 20-year-old faced one ball from England spinner Rashid without scoring before sending the second ball he faced in Test cricket down the ground for a maximum.
He was later dismissed for a 51-ball 24, but it was enough to secure his place in an exclusive club.
The last cricketer to manage the feat was West Indian Sunil Ambris, who achieved the feat in 2017, while Sri Lanka’s Dhananjaya de Silva began his Test account with a six against Australia in July 2016.
In June 2014, New Zealand spinner Mark Craig smashed the first ball he ever faced in Test cricket for six against the West Indies at Jamaica's Sabina Park.
Australia's Eric Freeman was the first recorded member of the club, starting his 11-match Test career in style against India at the Gabba in 1968.