Wicketkeeper-batter Rishabh Pant on Sunday broke the legendary Kapil Dev’s 40-year-old record of fastest Test fifty by an Indian on the second day of the Day/Night match against Sri Lanka.
The dashing left-hander cruised to his fifty in 28 balls (7×4, 2×6) in the 42nd over of Indian second innings when he hit a Praveen Jayawickrama delivery through the extra cover boundary.
India’s first World Cup-winning skipper Kapil Dev had cracked a 30-ball half-century against Pakistan in the Karachi Test in 1982.
“Rishabh Pant surpasses Kapil Dev to score the fastest 50 by an Indian in Test cricket… Take a bow, Rishabh,” posted BCCI in its Twitter handle.
Pant also set a world record for notching up the fastest fifty by a wicketkeeper-batter in Tests, bettering the efforts of Australia’s Ian Smith and former India captain MS Dhoni (both scored 34-ball fifty).
Pant, however, could not make it big and got out in the same score and over, giving Jayawickrama a return catch in the final delivery.
Shardul Thakur is the third in the list of fastest Test fifty by an Indian with his 31-ball half-century in the Oval Test against England last year. Meanwhile, Rohit added 42 runs with fellow opener Mayank Agarwal (22) and 56 for the second wicket with Hanuma Vihari (35),
Jayawickrama sent back Virat Kohli (13), whose again fell leg before and his search for that elusive 71st international hundred just got longer. He is without an international hundred in 73 innings now.
Former India opener Virender Sehwag has scored a 32-ball 50 against England in Chennai in 2008.