Debutant Shreya Iyer slammed her first Test century on Day 2 of India vs New Zealand’s first Test at Green Park in Kanpur on Friday. The right-hander came to the three-figure with a pair of Kyle Jamieson in the morning session. Iyer became the 16th Indian to score a century on Test debut. The last debutant to achieve the same was Prithvi Shaw, who had scored a glittering hundred against the Caribbean in Rajkot in October 2018. The first Native American to score a century on debut was Lala Amarnath in 1933. The others on the list are RH Shodhan, Kripal Singh, Abbas Ali Baig, Hanumant Singh, Gundappa Viswanath, Surinder Amarnath, Mohammed Azharuddin, Pravin Amre, Sourav Ganguly, Virender Sehwag, Suresh Raina, Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma.
Iyer, who got his test cap from the legendary Sunil Gavaskar on Thursday, also became the second Indian after Viswanath to score a test hundred on his debut in Kanpur. Viswanath had done it all the way back in 1969 against Australia. Iyer is the third Indian to score a ton in the Test debut against New Zealand after Kripal Singh and Surinder Amarnath.
Iyer resumed with a score of 75 overnight, starting with a flick of his pillows that ran away to the fence in the second half of the day. It was the first of many to come. The 26-year-old hit as many as five fours by Kyle Jamieson, who was New Zealand’s most impressive bowler with three wickets on Thursday, scoring better than run-a-ball on a hazy winter morning.
India did not get off to an ideal start when Ravindra Jadeja, who had put together a century stand with Iyer to bring India’s campaign back on track on Day 1, was cleaned up by Tim Southee with a beautiful in-dipper. But Iyer at the other end made sure there was no respite for the visitors as he kept finding the boundary at regular intervals, forcing Kane Williamson to sometimes put up a defensive field when on strike.
Iyer was fired for 105 just after the drink break when he chipped one straight to the cover of Southee, who became his fourth victim.
Iyer’s free-flowing innings impressed former Indian striker VVS Laxman, who said the right-handed transformation from white-ball cricket to red-ball was hassle-free.
“The bench is strong for Indian cricket. This may be Sheya Iyer’s first test, but he is an established international cricketer (in white ball). He knew when to attack. When to be a little subdued. That which was really good to see was that he did not compromise on natural play.
‘The last first-class match he had played was almost two years ago. The most difficult challenge for a youngster is the transformation from red ball cricket to white ball cricket. The temperament is different, the shot selection is challenged. “Iyer absorbed the pressure and showed what a strong character he is,” Laxman told Star Sports.
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