Kanpur, Nov 27 (UNI) As Team India took field on Day 3 of the first Test at Green Park Stadium here on Saturday, KS Bharat donned the wicket-keeper's gloves instead of regular stumper Wriddhiman Saha and straightaway was in action by scalping three behind the stumps.
The stumper took a sharp catch off the bowling of Ravichandran Ashwin, denying Will Young (89) get to his maiden Test hundred and then brought about a lovely catch off Axar Patel to send back seasoned Ross Taylor (11) to pavilion.
Bharat also denied a ton to another Kiwi opener Tom Latham (95) by a whisker after he collected a deviating ball and caught the batsman some feets short. The ball from Axar landed on the rough and turned prodigiously to fox Latham who gloved the bouncing ball to the wicketkeeper.
Bharat is now just one scalp away from equaling Saha's record of scalping four wickets as substitute wicketkeeper.
Not only this, Bharat also kept the stumps brilliantly with the pitch behaving wild with most of the balls keeping low.
No wonder then, he has 270 catches and 31 stumpings to his credit in his first-class career.
Bharat has scored 4,283 runs from 78 matches at an average of 37.24 with nine centuries and 23 fifties in first-class cricket.
Recently, he played for Andhra Pradesh in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy scoring 131 runs from five games including scores of 70 against Jammu and Kashmir and 48 against Jharkhand.
Bharat also hit headlines in the last IPL season when he scripted a sensational 78 not out against Delhi Capitals playing for Royal Challengers Bangalore.
Saha is suffering from a stiff neck and a medical team is treating him and monitoring his progress, the BCCI informed on their official Twitter handle.
The regular keeper had kept wicket for 55 overs on Day 2 and scored 1 off 12 balls before he nicked Tim Southee to keeper Tom Blundell.