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Reeza Hendricks joins select club of ODI centurions on debut


Reeza_Hendricks_South_Africa_CricketWith his match-winning 102 in the third ODI against Sri Lanka at Pallekele last Sunday, South Africa’s Reeza Hendricks joined a select list of batsmen to have scored a century in their first ODI. Hendricks’ 89-ball effort powered the Proteas to a 78-run win, which sealed their second successive ODI series win on Sri Lankan soil. Here is look back at the batsmen who previously achieved the rare feat. Interestingly, ten of the 14 instances have come within the last decade.

Note: This list does not include instances where the batsman scored a century in his first ODI innings, but not in his first ODI match.

Dennis Amiss (England) v Australia, Old Trafford, 1972

This was the first ODI to be played in England, and the second of all time. Australia, who had won the inaugural ODI between the two sides in 1970-71, were defeated this time, courtesy of Amiss’ 103 in 134 balls - the first ever ODI hundred - that paved the way for England’s six-wicket win. Earlier, Australia were limited to 222/8 in the allotted 55 overs. In 1975, Amiss also became the first batsman to score a World Cup ton, with a knock of 137 against India at Lord’s.

Desmond Haynes (West Indies) v Australia, St. John’s, 1977-78

One of the most prolific ODI run-getters, Haynes burst on to the scene with a 136-ball 148, lit with 16 fours and two sixes, that carried the West Indies to an imposing 313/7. Rain intervened when Australia were 181/7, leaving the hosts victors due to a faster run rate. When Haynes retired in 1993-94, he held the records for the most ODI runs (8,648) and centuries (17), which were respectively broken by India’s Mohammad Azharuddin and Sachin Tendulkar in 1998-99.

Andy Flower (Zimbabwe) v Sri Lanka, New Plymouth, 1991-92

The elder of the Flower brothers made a remarkable entry into international cricket, batting through the innings for an unbeaten 115 that laid the base for Zimbabwe’s total of 312/4 in their opening fixture of the 1992 World Cup. Flower, who also kept in the game, faced 152 balls and hit eight fours and a six. However, he ended up on the losing side as Sri Lanka completed a three-wicket win with four balls left, setting a new record for the highest successful ODI chase.

Saleem Elahi (Pakistan) v Sri Lanka, Gujranwala, 1995-96

Pakistan took a 1-0 lead in the three-match series (which they ultimately lost 2-1), winning by nine wickets with six overs to spare. Despite an unbeaten 102 from skipper Arjuna Ranatunga, Sri Lanka were restricted to 233/5. In reply, Aamer Sohail and 18-year-old Elahi added 156 for the opening wicket. Elahi, who was yet to play first-class cricket, went on to score an unbeaten 102 from 133 balls. He remains the youngest batsman to have scored a century in his first ODI.

Martin Guptill (New Zealand) v West Indies, Auckland, 2008-09

ODI cricket witnessed a debutant centurion after a gap of more than 13 years when Guptill struck an unbeaten 122 in the fourth ODI of a five-match series at Eden Park. With the series locked at 1-1, New Zealand were provided with a robust total of 275/4 thanks to Guptill, who hit eight fours and two sixes in his 135-ball innings, and joined forces with Ross Taylor (75) in a third-wicket stand worth 144. The West Indies raced to 64/0 in the 11th over, but rain had the final say.

Colin Ingram (South Africa) v Zimbabwe, Bloemfontein, 2010-11

The left-handed Ingram became the first South African to notch a hundred on ODI debut, helping his team to kick off the three-match series with a 64-run win. Ingram walked in at 64/1 and shared in a match-winning second-wicket stand of 136 with Hashim Amla (110), before being the fifth man out for 124 from 126 balls. South Africa’s total of 351/7 put the game beyond Zimbabwe’s reach, and despite a fine 145* from Brendan Taylor, the visitors finished at 287/6.

Rob Nicol (New Zealand) v Zimbabwe, Harare, 2011-12

Nicol starred in New Zealand’s nine-wicket win with an unbeaten 108, joining Guptill as the second batsman from his country to score a debut ODI hundred. Zimbabwe were in dire straits at 21/4 after electing to bat, before a fifth-wicket stand of 156 between Brendan Taylor (128*) and Forster Mutizwa (69) improved the total to 231/6. New Zealand achieved the target in the 44th over, with openers Guptill (74) and Nicol, who faced 131 balls and hit 11 fours, putting on 153.

Phil Hughes (Australia) v Sri Lanka, Melbourne, 2012-13

Nearly four years after a bright start to his Test career – he scored centuries in both innings in his second Test, at Durban in 2008-09 – Hughes made an early impact in ODIs as well. In what was the first game of a five-ODI series, the young southpaw wowed the MCG crowd with a 129-ball 112 that was the cornerstone of a total of 305/5 and, eventually, a 107-run win. Hughes added another century (138*) in the final game at Hobart to help Australia square the series 2-2.

Michael Lumb (England) v West Indies, North Sound, 2013-14

Lumb and Moeen Ali, England’s debutant openers, shared a partnership of 96 to give England a solid start in their chase after the West Indies had recovered from 45/4 to post 269/6, thanks to Dwayne Bravo’s 87*. While Moeen was dismissed for 44, the 34-year-old Lumb proceeded to reach 106 from 117 balls. When Lumb was third out at 180, England still required 90 runs from 78 balls. The batsmen to follow failed to up the ante though, and the innings terminated at 254/6.

Mark Chapman (Hong Kong) v United Arab Emirates, Dubai, 2015-16

Chapman was at the forefront of Hong Kong’s 89-run win in this ICC World Cricket League match. Hong Kong were 155/2 in 33 overs when the left-hander came in, and by the end of the innings, he had scored 124* from 116 balls in a total of 298/4. Faced with a stiff target, the UAE folded for 209 in the 43rd over. Chapman, who holds dual citizenship through his New Zealander father, played only one more ODI for Hong Kong, and made his Black Caps debut in 2017-18.

Lokesh Rahul (India) v Zimbabwe, Harare, 2016

The stylish Rahul marked his ODI debut by with a poised century as India, bereft of many first-choice players, made short work of Zimbabwe. After pacer Jasprit Bumrah took 4/28 to condemn Zimbabwe to 168, Rahul creamed 100* off 115 balls and shared a second-wicket stand of 162* with Ambati Rayudu (62*) to steer India to a nine-wicket win in the 43rd over. The previous best ODI score on debut for India was 86, by Robin Uthappa against England at Indore in 2005-06.

Temba Bavuma (South Africa) v Ireland, Benoni, 2016

Ireland’s first ODI in South Africa ended in a chastening 206-run defeat, highlighted by a 123-ball 113 from debutant opener Temba Bavuma, the first black top-order batsman to play for South Africa. Quinton de Kock (82) and Bavuma built an opening stand of 159 to lay the platform for a total of 354/5. The diminutive Bavuma struck 13 fours and a six before getting out in the 38th over. The deflated Irishmen lasted only 30.5 overs before being bundled out for 148.

Imam-ul-Haq (Pakistan) v Sri Lanka, Abu Dhabi, 2017-18

Pakistan cruised to a 3-0 lead in the five-match series with a commanding seven-wicket win. Sri Lanka collapsed from 101/1 to 208 all out, with left-arm seamer Hasan Ali (5/34) doing most of the damage. Opening the Pakistani innings was bespectacled Imam-ul-Haq, a nephew of former batting great Inzamam-ul-Haq. Imam crushed any hopes that the Sri Lankans might have had with a composed 100 in 125 balls, bringing the series-clinching victory with 45 balls remaining. 


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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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