If anybody who watched Shikhar Dhawan’s unbeaten 185 in just 168 balls (33x4s and 2x6s) against Australia on Saturday, he would have found it hard to believe that the southpaw was batting in his debut Test.
The Delhite showed no signs of nerves or an over-cautious approach when he walked into bat with Murali Vijay to open for India after bowling out Australia for 408 in the first innings of the third Test at the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium in Mohali. India ended Day Three at 283 for no loss with Vijay (83) giving company to Dhawan.
Dhawan made history by scoring the fastest Test ton (in just 85 balls) on debut, surpassing the 93-ball hundred by West Indies’ Dwayne Smith (against South Africa at Cape Town in 2003-04).
Vijay Dahiya, Delhi’s Ranji Trophy team coach, said Dhawan’s flawless innings has also silenced his doubters, who questioned the left-hander’s ability to do well at the international level.
“There were questions whether Dhawan would replicate his performance at the highest level. I think this innings has proved them (critics) wrong. I am happy that he didn’t hold back his natural style of batting,” Dahiya told
SUNDAY MiD DAY from New Delhi. Dhawan had to work hard in 81 first-class matches, over 100 List A games to impress the selectors for a Test berth. He has played five ODIs, but with little success.
Dahiya said Dhawan’s century has left a lasting impression on everyone’s mind. “He was simply brilliant. I have no words to describe it. Legends of the game were present there, and I am sure it will have a lasting impression.
This hundred will be at the top whenever one thinks of centuries on debut. It was the best knock I have seen by any debutant. I hope he carries on and goes on to score more runs tomorrow (Sunday),” said the ex-India wicketkeeper.