Fifth Test: Pant scores maiden hundred; takes India to 298/5 at tea

This was incidentally the first ever hundred by an Indian keeper on English soil

Rishabh Pant (left) celebrates his century with K.L. Rahul on the final day of the fifth Test match against England at the Oval in London | AFP

Young Rishabh Pant made amends for his poor glovework with a scintillating hundred as India reached 298 for 5 against England at tea in pursuit of a world record target of 464 in the fifth and final Test.

Left-handed Pant was batting 101 and added 177 runs for the sixth wicket with K.L. Rahul (142 batting) as India require 166 runs in 32 overs in the final session to earn a world record victory.

The second session certainly belonged to Pant, who hit 14 boundaries and three sixes including one over deep mid-wicket off Adil Rashid to complete a well-deserved hundred.

Rahul who had attacked during the first session dropped anchor allowing Pant to play a free-flowing game.

Having performed below par with the gloves, the century would certainly give him oxygen ahead of the West Indies home series. With Moeen Ali and Adil Rashid in operation for the better part, Pant muscled the balls through the gaps with some delectable drives through off and powerful slog shots through the on-side.

This was incidentally the first ever hundred by an Indian keeper on English soil surpassing previous best of 92 by M.S. Dhoni.

Rahul hit 19 fours and a six as England were on course striking twin blows towards the end of the first session to remain on course for a 4-1 series victory.

This is Rahul's fifth Test hundred and first 50 plus score of the series after failing in nine successive innings.