Over the years, fans of the Indian Premier League (IPL) have witnessed many great knocks on debut. From established veterans to up-and-coming youngsters, may have lit up the IPL in their very first game. In this article, we will look at five popular Indian players who have scored a half-century on IPL debut.
#5 Kedar Jadhav – 50* vs RCB, 2010
Jadhav made his IPL debut much earlier than his first game for India. In 2010, Jadhav played his first IPL game for Delhi Daredevils against Royal Challengers Bangalore. Jadhav came to crease after the dismissal of Karthik and joined AB de Villiers at the crease.
Jadhav started steadily and accelerated in the death overs after the dismissal of ABD. He finished the innings on a high with a four and six off the last over delivered by Vinay Kumar. His half-century came off just 29 balls and involved five fours and two sixes. His innings helped Delhi post a total of 183 and they won the match by 17 runs.
#4 Ambati Rayudu – 55 vs RR, 2010
Rayudu made his debut for Mumbai Indians against Rajasthan Royals in 2010. Rayudu started his IPL career with a trademark flick towards the midwicket region. He formed a superb partnership with Saurabh Tiwary as they rotated the strike well and hit boundaries occasionally.
Rayudu exploded in the 15th over bowled by Jhunjunwala and hit him for two fours and a six. Rayudu was dismissed after a half-century on debut and MI posted a monumental score of 212. Rajasthan Royals almost chased it down but MI survived by four runs to clinch a thriller.
#3 Shikhar Dhawan – 52* vs RR, 2008
In the third game of the very first IPL, Rajasthan Royals posted a meagre total of 129. In reply, Delhi’s formidable opening duo of Sehwag and Gambhir got off to a fiery start but Sehwag’s blitzkrieg did not last long. Dhawan walked out at number 3 and plays a composed knock, understanding the situation perfectly well.
Although Shikhar Dhawan is now known for his off-side game, all of his boundaries in this game came on the legside. He played short-arm jabs and pulled effectively when the ball was pitched short. Dhawan hit the winning boundary and Delhi won the game with 29 balls to spare.
#2 Gautam Gambhir – 58* vs RR, 2008
Gambhir too got to his first IPL fifty in the same game as Dhawan. The total posted by RR was too low to make Gambhir panic and the southpaw played his natural game comfortably. A familiar theme followed during Gambhir’s time at the crease as he often made room to smash the ball towards the extra cover region.
A beautiful inside out shot off Munaf Patel was probably Gambhir’s best stroke of the game. He was also happy to let Dhawan accelerate and finish the innings. His 58 ball 46 is the first of 44 half-centuries.
#1 Devdutt Padikkal – 56 vs SRH, 2020
The youngest of the lot in the list, Padikkal’s talent and confidence was clearly visible during his first outing in the IPL. Padikkal and Finch opened the batting for RCB and the youngster from Karnataka scored a stroke-filled half-century on debut. In the second over of the game bowled by Sandeep Sharma, Padikkal scored two boundaries.
Natarajan was hit for three boundaries, with two of them being pull shots. After powerplay, Padikkal settled down but failed to accelerate after reaching his fifty. RCB won the game by 10 runs and Padikkal went on to have a very successful debut season.