Debashis Sarangi ∙ Nov 15 2022, 12:00 PM

#OTD in 1989: Sachin Tendulkar made his international debut

image-lai41ncjSachin Tendulkar in his debut match [Source: Twitter]

When Sunil Gavaskar hung up his boots in 1987, Indian fans were in dire need of his ablest successor, who could help the team reach new heights. And to their delight, another Mumbaikar, Sachin Tendulkar, graced the Indian dressing room with his stupendous skillset, that not only evolved India into a great cricketing nation but also was pivotal in ensuring their golden phase in the game they love. 

Sachin rose to instant fame after his heroics in the Harris Shield Trophy, wherein he stitched a mammoth 664-run stand with his childhood friend Vinod Kambli. His batting talent was evident from the start; he was smashing the record books in domestic cricket. So, his India debut, which was on the cards, became a reality on this day against Pakistan in Karachi in 1989. 

However, Sachin was exposed to a massive challenge that could dent his confidence from the very beginning. The Karachi pitch had a decent grass covering, making it difficult to differentiate it from the outfield. Facing a formidable Pakistani attack comprising Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis and Imran Khan on that spicy deck was never going to be a walk in the park. But Sachin's response to the challenge spoke a lot about his character, built by the bricks of dedication and temperament. 

Although he got out for a 24-ball 15, India's would-be Master Blaster amused the spectators with his water-tight defence and gorgeous stroke play. However, it didn't take him long to make a statement, as he compiled a glorious 59 off 172 balls, helping India reach a respectable 288 in the second Test in Faisalabad. 

All in all, that series showed glimpses of what India would rejoice about for 24 long years. Immediately after the series concluded, Sachin became the youngest Indian to smash tons in England (Old Trafford, 1990) and Australia (Sydney, 1992). And there was no looking back after that. 200 Tests, 15921 runs, 51 centuries; he ensured he attained all the milestones. 

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