Prithvi Shaw and his Test debut's similarities with former Mumbai batsmen

Prithvi Shaw and his Test debut’s similarities with former Mumbai batsmen

He will open the innings for India in the first Test against Windies in Rajkot.

Prithvi Shaw
Prithvi Shaw. (Photo by Harry Trump/Getty Images)

Like many of the legendary batsmen hailing from Mumbai, Prithvi Shaw also gained a reputation through his pure skill rather than numbers. The selectors had roped them in even before they had hardly scored runs in the domestic circuit. Shaw featured in only 14 first-class matches thus far and has already scored seven centuries including two of them for India A. He has amassed 1418 runs thus far in his FC career at an average of 56.72. His batting strike-rate of 76.69 in this format is something that his opponents will have to make a note of.

Fewest FC games before Test debut since Sachin Tendulkar:

When Prithvi takes the field on Thursday, he will be into his 15th first-class match only. The 14 FC games he played before his Test debut are the fewest by a specialist batsman for India since Sachin Tendulkar. The prolific batsman in Test history featured in only nine first-class matches prior to his Test debut in 1989. Many players made their Test debut in these 29 years with experience of less than 14 FC games but none of them played purely as batsmen.

Interestingly, both these batsmen have scored a century on their debut in Ranji Trophy and Duleep Trophy. Sachin had a century on Irani Trophy debut as well while Prithvi made a fifty in his only game in this competition. Prithvi comes next to Sachin in the list of youngest players to score a hundred on debut for Mumbai. The 18-year-old is also behind the same cricketer in the youngest players with a century in Duleep Trophy.

A rare young opener

Prithvi Shaw, a month before turning 19, will be opening the Indian innings along with KL Rahul. Looking back at the Test history, it is found that India has rarely preferred with the youngsters at the top. Only one player has made his debut as an opener for India before turning 19. The dashing batsman will be the second one to do so and that too with an experience of 14 FC games; the fewest for an Indian opener on debut since 1971.

Dilip Vengsarkar, also from Mumbai, was only eight FC games old when he made his Test debut as an opener in 1976. Another Mumbai legend Sunil Gavaskar made his debut in the longest format in 1971 also after playing only 14 FC matches and his debut also came against the Windies.

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