Shikhar Dhawan, affectionately called “Gabbar” by his Delhi teammates for his hulk like body and the enormous amount of power he packs in his shots will not forget the third day of the Mohali Test between India and Australia for the rest of his life…
Making his Test debut in place of Virender Sehwag, Dhawan pounced on to the opportunity and rewrote many records. He raced to his fifty off just 50 balls with 12 fours. It took him another 35 balls to score his second fifty. In doing so, Dhawan established a world record. Dhawan’s 85-ball hundred is now the fastest hundred by a batsman on his Test debut. West Indies’ Dwayne Smith held the previous record as he took 93 balls for his hundred against South Africa at Cape Town in 2003-04.
Dhawan’s 85-ball hundred is also the fourth fastest by an Indian in Test cricket. The record is shared by Kapil Dev and Mohammad Azharuddin with 74-ball hundreds, followed by a 78-ball hundred by Virender Sehwag.
Between lunch and tea, Dhawan scored 106 runs. He became only the fourth batsman to score hundred runs in a session on Test debut after West Indies’ Dwayne Smith, England’s Matt Prior and Bangladesh’s Abul Hasan. Dhawan is only the seventh Indian player to score a hundred in a session.
Dhawan also became the 13th Indian to score a hundred on Test debut. His innings is easily the highest by an Indian on Test debut, eclipsing Gundappa Viswanath’s 137 also against Australia at Kanpur in 1969-70. In all Test cricket, there have been only five scores higher than Dhawan’s 185* on Test debut. Incidentally Dhawan is the first Indian opener to score a hundred on Test debut. His innings is now the second highest by any opener on debut in all Test cricket. Dhawan was involved in an unbroken 283-run partnership with Murali Vijay.
Dhawan first came into limelight when he scored three centuries in the U-19 World Cup in Bangladesh way back in 2004. Some of his U-19 teammates like Suresh Raina, RP Singh, Dinesh Karthik all donned the national jersey much before and it became an agonising wait for the affable man.
“We are happy that it has been a worthwhile wait,” said Shrestha Dhawan, his sister.
His one-time teammate and now Delhi coach Vijay Dahiya would tell you that “one poor shot in 2010-11” Ranji season changed his approach. “Delhi needed 136 to win against Railways with a day and 10 overs left. Shikhar played a rank bad shot and Delhilost the match and failed to make it to the knock-out stages. He was criticised a lot. This year on a green-top at the Roshanara, Shikhar anchored a 270-run fourth innings chase with a matured knock,” Dahiya stated. Those who were present at the Roshanara on that day saw erstwhile coach Manoj Prabhakar losing his cool once Dhawan got out. “That shot was playing on my mind while batting against Maharashtra,” Dhawan had admitted after his knock against Maharashtra.
Once a regular at the Page-3 parties, Dhawan has now turned into a devoted family man post his marriage to half Bengali-half British Aesha Mukherjee. His wife has two daughters from her earlier marriage and Dhawan is a proud dad. Post Mohali, Dhawan has ensured that he will also be remembered for having played one of the most breathtaking innings in the Indian cricket’s history.
– With inputs from Firstpost/HT
More Facts About Shikhar Dhawan
- The 27-year-old is part of an attacking Delhi top-order which includes the likes of Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir and Virat Kohli.
- Was named player of the tournament in the 2003-04 edition of the U-19 World Cup in Bangladesh where he scored 505 runs at an average of 84.16 with three tons.
- Has 16 centuries and as many as 24 fifties in first-class cricket. Is a seasoned campaigner in domestic cricket and can flay the opposition at will.
- Played a prominent role in taking his team to the Ranji Trophy in 2007-08
- In the previous edition of the Indian Premier League, he was the third-highest run-getter with 569 runs for DeccanChargers.
- Despite his massive reputation in IPL and domestic cricket, Dhawan scored a duck on ODI debut. Averages 13.80 from 5 matches played.
Source : NDTV