Young Indian sensation Shafali Verma is having a dream debut. After scoring a magnificent 96 in the first innings of the one-off Test against England women, the opener smacked another half-century in the second innings and was unbeaten on 55 at the end of Day 3. In doing so, Shafali has become the first Indian and fourth overall to score a half-century in both innings on Test debut in the history of women cricket. Also, at 17, she has become the youngest player to score twin half-centuries in her debut Test, breaking the record of Australia’s Jess Jonassen, who scored half-centuries in each innings of her debut Test when she was 22 years old in 2015.
Shafali is the fourth batsman from India to score more than 150 runs on her Test debut. Shikhar Dhawan holds the record of scoring the most runs in a debut Test for India. Dhawan stroked a magnificent 187 against Australia in 2013. Following Dhawan is Rohit Sharma, who scored 177 runs against West Indies in the year 2013 itself. The third on the list is Lala Amarnath who scored 156 against England in 1933.
Shafali missed out on a hundred and an opportunity to become the first Indian to score a century on Test debut. Also, she had an opportunity to become the youngest women cricketer to score a Test century. The opener can create history if she can reach the three-figure mark in the second innings. Following on, India women are still trailing by 82 runs and the batsmen need to step up if they are to save the match.
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