Sarfaraz Khan gets flying kisses on equalling Hardik Pandya with 48-ball fifty | Cricket - Hindustan Times
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Sarfaraz Khan receives flying kisses after equalling Hardik Pandya with 48-ball fifty on Test debut against England

Feb 15, 2024 05:53 PM IST

Sarfaraz Khan scored the joint second-fastest fifty by an Indian on Test debut and was showered with flying kisses from his family.

Sarfaraz Khan took the attention off Rohit Sharma and Ravindra Jadeja as the 23-year-old began his India Test career with a blistering half-century against England on Day 1 of the Rajkot Tests. Rohit scored 131 – his 11th Test century – and Jadeja neared his 4th, but it was Sarfaraz, who with a 48-ball half-century, captivated the attention of the audience. Showing absolutely no nerves whatsoever, Sarfaraz grabbed the bull by its horns and unleashed a counter attack en route to a fifty on debut. As India went into stumps at 326/5, Sarfaraz's blitzkrieg, while it lasted, was the most entertaining among all knocks by quite some distance.

What a star, Sarfaraz Khan. (Reuters)
What a star, Sarfaraz Khan. (Reuters)

As Sarfaraz bazballed his way into scoring a rampant half-century, he joined India all-rounder Hardik Pandya in equalling his feat of smashing the second fastest fifty on Test debut. The all time record belongs to Yuvraj of Patiala, who rocketed to a 42-ball fifty against England in 1934. Like Sarfaraz, Hardik too had blasted a half-century off 48 balls on his debut against Sri Lanka at Galle in 2017. He would go on to score 108 – the fastest Test century – in the series and followed it up with a cracking knock of 93 against South Africa shortly after, but in Sarfaraz's innings, reflected shades of Hardik's batting of the old.

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Also Read: India vs England 3rd Test Day 1 Highlights

Watch the video below:

Sarfaraz Khan shows his mettle against spin

Sarfaraz showed why he is considered one of India's best players against spinners. He executed the sweep shot effectively and showed no reluctance in stepping out and carting them over their heads and down the ground. Sarfaraz was on 43, when he launched Tom Hartley over the V and took a single off the next delivery to complete a half-century. With his father and wife watching the proceedings from the stands, both broke out into emotional celebrations, sending flying kisses his way.

To gauge Sarfaraz' aggressive intent, don't look beyond this trivia. Jadeja was batting on 86 when out walked Sarfaraz, and by the time the youngster was dismissed unfortunately following a run out, Jadeja was yet to complete his century. Sarfaraz's knock ended on 62 off 66 balls as a direct hit from Mark Wood at long off brought an end to his innings. The rate at which he was going, Sarfaraz looked destined for a hundred, and as Jadeja went into a shell as he neared his, he even threatened getting to the landmark even before his partner.

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