New Delhi, January 2: The on-field banter between India wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant and Australia skipper Tim Paine is winning over the hearts of the cricket enthusiasts.
Even the Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison is aware of the fact that the young India glovesman is not only good at cricket but also deft at sledging the opposition batsmen.
India and Australian players gathered at the residence of the Australian Prime Minister for an official lunch on the occasion of the New Year celebration.
While the focus at the gathering was on Indian captain Virat Kohli and his actor wife Anushka Sharma, the Australian PM recognised how a chirpy Pant gave the Australian skipper, a taste of his own medicine when he walked into the middle to bat in Melbourne Test.
The Aussie PM's response after meeting Pant left everyone in splits. "You sledge right?" questioned the Australian PM. "You are very welcome, we like competitive game," Morrison added further.
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At the same party, Pant also bonded well with Paine's wife and infant son. Paine's wife Bonnie put up a picture on her Instagram account which had the 21-year-old Pant holding the home captain's son during the event.
Bonnie, who herself posed in the picture, captioned it 'Best Babysitter' with a smiling Pant by her side. The reference came after Paine and Pant had a go at each other during the Melbourne Test match and the stump microphone recorded their enjoyable sledging.
While the Indian keeper was batting, Paine referred to his omission from the ODI side. "Big MS (Dhoni) is back in the one-day squad too, we might get him (Pant) down to the (Hobart) Hurricanes... we need a batter. Fancy that, Pantsy? Extend your little Aussie holiday. Beautiful town Hobart too, I'll get you a nice apartment on the waterfront. (I'll) have him over for dinner. Can you babysit? I'll take the wife to the movies one night and you'll look after the kids," the Australian captain was heard saying on the stump mic.
On the very next day, Pant was heard speaking to Mayank Agarwal when Paine came to the crease. "We got a special guest today. Have you ever heard of a temporary captain, ever, Mayank?" Pant said.
(With inputs from agencies)