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The highest scores on T20I debut


T20I_debut_highest_scores_CricketFollowing the welcome expansion of T20 international status to all member nations of the International Cricket Council (ICC), there have been a number of new entries into the record books. In the third week of August, there were two instances of a batsman scoring a hundred on T20I debut in the space of three days, and interestingly, no one had previously achieved the feat since the advent of T20Is. On that note, here is a look at the highest debut scores in men’s T20Is.

101* by Jean-Pierre Kotze (Namibia) v Botswana, Windhoek, 2019

Namibia stormed to a 2-0 lead in the four-match series – the first T20I series to be played in Namibia – with a 124-run win headlined by Kotze’s blitzing knock. The left-handed Kotze came in only in the 11th over, with the score already 120/2, and proceeded to clobber an unbeaten 101 in just 43 balls (the fourth fastest hundred in T20Is), inclusive of seven fours and nine sixes. Five of these sixes were hit in consecutive balls in the 19th over, as Namibia piled up a massive 240/3.  

101 by Ravinderpal Singh (Canada) v Cayman Islands, Sandys Parish, 2019

Just two days before Kotze joined him at the top of the list, Canada’s Ravinderpal Singh had created history by becoming the first man to score a century on T20I debut. In what was a first-round game of the World T20 Americas Qualifier in Bermuda, Canada were 29/2 in the fifth over when Ravinderpal arrived. He stayed put till the 19th over, by which time he had struck six fours and ten sixes in a 48-ball stay. Canada duly posted 196/6, enough to seal a win by 84 runs.       

98* by Ricky Ponting (Australia) v New Zealand, Auckland, 2004-05

The first men’s T20I might have been a bit of hit-and-giggle for both teams, but Ponting was in no mood to take it lightly. The Australian captain set the tone for his team’s total of 214/5 with an effort that took 55 balls, featured seven fours and five sixes, and remained the record T20I score by a debutant for over 14 years. He rescued Australia from 54/4 through respective stands of 83 and 77* with Simon Katich and Michael Hussey, eventually leading them to a 44-run win.

89 by David Warner (Australia) v South Africa, Melbourne, 2008-09

The swashbuckling Warner announced himself on the international scene with a whirlwind performance that was instrumental in an Australian victory at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. The opener, then aged 22 and yet to play a first-class game, treated the likes of Makhaya Ntini and Dale Steyn with disdain en route to a 43-ball innings lit with seven fours and six sixes, before falling to Ntini in the 14th over. Replying to Australia’s 182/9, the Proteas folded for 130.

88* by Hiral Patel (Canada) v Ireland, Colombo, 2009-10

Patel, who would go on to crack a rapid fifty against Australia at the World Cup a year later, starred for Canada in this match that was part of a quadrangular also involving Afghanistan and Sri Lanka A. Opening the innings, Patel faced 61 balls and hit nine fours and two sixes as Canada put up a total of 176/3. Ireland began their chase with intent, but had to settle with 172/8. Patel’s 88* was the highest T20I score by a Canadian before Ravinderpal surpassed it last month.  

79 by Adnan Idrees (Kuwait) v Qatar, Doha, 2019

Qatar had to endure the disappointment of finishing on the losing side in the first ever men’s T20I hosted by them, thanks to a stroke-filled 79 in 50 balls (with 11 fours and two sixes) from Kuwait’s number three Adnan Idrees. Chasing 155, Kuwait lost Sankar Varathappan for a duck early, but Ravija Sandaruwan (45 in 19 balls) and Idrees ensured that the Qatari fielders were sent on a leather hunt. Kuwait still had 21 balls remaining when they sealed a seven-wicket win.

78 by Rilee Rossouw (South Africa) v Australia, Adelaide, 2014-15

The left-handed Rossouw made his T20I debut memorable by steering South Africa to a seven-wicket win with an over to spare in this first of a three-match series. Faced with a middling target of 145, South Africa endured a poor start by losing Reeza Hendricks for a duck off the third ball, at which point Rossouw joined Quinton de Kock. The pair put on a stand of 129 for the second wicket before Rossouw was dismissed for 78 off 50 balls, having hit seven fours and three sixes.

78 by Dawid Malan (England) v South Africa, Cardiff, 2017

After 11 years of rich T20 experience with Middlesex, Malan finally got his chance at the international level. The southpaw made sure that he grabbed it with both hands, scoring 78 in 44 balls after coming in at number three. He hit 12 fours and two sixes on the way, and dominated a second-wicket association of 105 with Alex Hales that put England on course for a total of 181/8. South Africa were limited to 162/7 in reply, giving England the three-match series by 2-1.  

72 by Steven Taylor (United States of America) v United Arab Emirates, Dubai, 2018-19

One of the brightest all-round talents on the Associate scene, Taylor marked his T20I debut – which was also the USA’s maiden T20I – with a dazzling innings. The hard-hitting left-hander came to the crease at 7/1 in the second over, and went on to smash 72 in 39 balls, including nine fours and three sixes. Rain made its presence felt though, first making the game a 15-over affair (the USA finishing with 152/7) and then, with the UAE at 29/2 in response, ensuring a no-result.   

71 by Junaid Siddique (Bangladesh) v Pakistan, Cape Town, 2007-08

While Pakistan had already qualified for the semifinals of the inaugural World Twenty20, Bangladesh had only pride to play for in this last fixture of the Super Eight stage. Siddique opened the innings for the Tigers, and went after the bowling with a 49-ball 71 that was studded with six fours and three sixes. However, the 19-year-old left-hander’s endeavour went in vain – Bangladesh were all out for 140, which was chased down by Pakistan for the loss of six wickets.

71 by Paul Hennessy (Spain) v Malta, Cartagena, 2019

This was the fifth match of a triangular series also involving Estonia. Bolstered by an opening partnership worth 155 in 15 overs between Hennessy and Awais Ahmed, the hosts racked up an imposing 206/2 on the board. While Ahmed (102 in 64 balls) became the first Spanish batsman to score a T20I ton, Middlesex-born Hennessy clouted seven fours and four sixes in the course of his 71 from 44 balls. Malta were never really in the hunt thereafter, and were bowled out for 97.

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Rustom Deboo is a cricket aficionado and freelance writer from Mumbai. He is an ardent devotee of T...

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