'Spoke to him about getting 100 in IPL but he got it for India': Legendary all-rounder in awe of Hooda's Dublin ton
Despite Ireland's superb fightback to push India to the edge in the 226-run chase in Dublin on Tuesday and a nail-biting finish to the high-scoring thriller, the limelight of the entire match was on one man only - Deepak Hooda, who scored a sensational and record century for India in the final T20I match of the series to help India win by just four runs. And legendary India all-rounder Irfan Pathan was in awe of Hooda's Dublin performance as he revealed his conversation on scoring a century with the India star.
Moments after Hooda lifted his bat to soak in all the appreciation from the Dublin crowd, Irfan took to Twitter to reveal that he had asked the batter to score a ton in IPL where he played for Lucknow Super Giants in the last edition. While Hooda was exceptional as a batter throughout IPL 2022, he made the most of the opportunity presented to him in the Ireland series to make a case for himself in India's T20 World Cup squad.
“During the IPL, Spoke to @HoodaOnFire abt getting 100 but even better for him to get the century for Team India! So so proud of this boy.” Irfan tweeted.
Hooda had never opened in a cricket match in his career, but was asked to take the role alongside Ishan Kishan in the 1st T20I against Ireland on Sunday. He scored a 29-ball 47 in India's win in the rain-hit match before scoring 104 in the second game against Ireland.
Hooda became the fourth India batter to score a ton in T20Is after Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul and Suresh Raina and third on overseas soil. Hooda now also has the highest score by an India batter against Ireland.
"I am coming from a good IPL, I was trying to follow up the same performance here as well. I like playing aggressively. Batting up the order, I have the time, I try to play according to the situation," he said in the post-match presentation where he was adjudged the Player of the Match and Player of the Series.