Lokesh Rahul may not have found form in the batting department of late, but the Indian opener hasn't lost even a bit of his integrity.
During the third day of the fourth Test match against Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Saturday, the Indian opener dived forward at mid-on in an attempt to catch an ill-timed thwack by Aussie batsman Marcus Harris off Ravindra Jadeja.
While the timing and the effort were phenomenal, the Kings XI Punjab batsman fell short by a few inches as the ball bounced and volleyed into his hands. His teammates celebrated immediately thinking they had bagged the first wicket of the innings, but Rahul promptly gesticulated that he hadn't taken it cleanly.
A good effort from Rahul and he immediately says it bounced. Great stuff. Umpire Gould a big fan of it #CloseMatters#AUSvIND | @GilletteAU pic.twitter.com/7nA0H5Lsc7— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) January 4, 2019
Harris had just started walking back while even the commentator had believed that the catch was clean before relying on Rahul's revelation. The crowd applauded and cheered as Jasprit Bumrah came in and patted Rahul's head in appreciation.
"Fantastic sportsmanship by Rahul," summed up the commentator.
It even left on-field umpire Ian Gould impressed, as he turned back before the next delivery was to be bowled, and applauded Rahul's honesty and gave him the thumbs up.
Good stuff from KL Rahul to ensure that the umpires don't waste time going to the third umpire #AUSvIND— Sreshth Shah (@sreshthx) January 4, 2019
KL Rahul with that elite honesty #AUSvIND— James Mottershead (@mottersjames) January 4, 2019
Harris eventually went on to score 79 with the opening partnership putting on 72.
Learning curve for Agarwal
Batting first, India declared at a massive 622/7 in their first innings, helped by tons from the in-form Cheteshwar Pujara and wicket-keeper Rishabh Pant. Jadeja scored 81 and Mayank Agarwal continued to impress in just his second match with 77 off just 112 balls, helped by seven fours and two sixes, to score one better than in his debut match.
"I am quite disappointed for missing out on a big score," stated Agarwal, who holed out to long-on off Nathan Lyon's delivery ending a 110-run stand with Pujara for the second wicket. "But having said that, it's a learning curve."
While lauding Pant’s efforts with the bat, important to not forget the invaluable contribution of another young batsman, Mayank Agarwal.— Sanjay Manjrekar (@sanjaymanjrekar) January 4, 2019
Scores of 76,42 and 77 as opener in his 3 Test innings when the bowlers are fresh & raring to go. #AUSVIND
Two Tests and two seventies for Mayank Agarwal. Had fantastic opportunity to get to a ton at Sydney. Showed a lot of character and played well. Didn’t look flustered at all— Sarang Bhalerao (@bhaleraosarang) January 3, 2019
I’m sure he’ll get to a Test ton soon.
Easily the find of the tournament.#AUSvIND
Congratulations Mayank Agarwal for yet another great start. As some people say, there is nothing called luck. It's all about talent grabbing opportunities. He is doing it so perfectly. #ThursdayThoughts #AusvInd #MayankAgarwal @mayankcricket pic.twitter.com/gocEZKQEFE— Prabhu (@Cricprabhu) January 3, 2019
Too early I know but Mayank Agarwal looks impressive. He should have been on the England & South Africa tours. The series outcome may have been different! #AUSvIND— Sohini (@Mittermaniac) January 3, 2019
Mayank Agarwal has a touch of class about him— Cricketwallah (@cricketwallah) January 3, 2019