It is a dream of every cricketer to perform well on debut, but not many end up fulfilling it. While some have seen disappointments on their debut, there are a few Indian cricketers who had a memorable outing for their national side on debut. Especially in the Test format, there have been eight instances where the debutants have bagged the Player of the Match award in their very first international outing.
On that note, let us look at the list of Indians with a Player-of-the-Match award on their Test debut
8. Pravin Amre vs South Africa in Durban in 1992
Only a select few players have reached 100 in their first Test match on foreign territory, and for many, it represents the fulfillment of a dream. In difficult circumstances, for a faltering team, and against an attack that comprised Donald, Pringle, and McMillan at Durban in 1992–1993, Praveen Amre, one of those rare breeds of players, accomplished this feat by making 103 against South Africa and rightfully won the POTM award.
7. RP Singh vs Pakistan in Faisalabad in 2006
RP Singh made his Test debut on January 21, 2006 when India and Pakistan locked horns. The game remains to be one of the finest India-Pakistan encounters as it witnessed a total of six centurions, two from India and four from Pakistan. RP Singh picked up four wickets in the first innings, and finished with a solitary wicket in the second to win the POTM.
6. R Ashwin vs West Indies in Delhi in 2011
Ravichandran Ashwin has been a blessing to the Indian Test setup, quite literally. In his very first Test match against the West Indies, he picked up three wickets in the first innings. While Pragyan Ojha was the star with six wickets, Ashwin stood out in the second innings and picked up a six-wicket haul. West Indies’ batting unit was dismantled for 180 runs and India chased down the target to win by five wickets.
5. Shikhar Dhawan vs Australia in Mohali in 2013
Shikhar Dhawan made his way into the international Test setup in style by scoring a century in his very first game. After Australia posted 408 runs in the first innings, centuries by Murali Vijay and Shikhar Dhawan helped India post 499 runs. India then restricted Australia to 223 in the second innings before eventually chasing the target down to win the game.
4. Rohit Sharma vs West Indies in Kolkata in 2013
The current Indian skipper too had a breakthrough game when he walked out with the bat in his first-ever red-ball match. In a Test against the West Indies in Kolkata, India started their batting innings after the visitors posted 234 in their first innings. Riding on Rohit Sharma’s century (177 off 301), followed by Ashwin’s mind-blowing knock of 124, India posted 453. The MS Dhoni-led side then dismissed the rival side for 168 runs in the second innings to win the game by an innings and 51 runs.
3. Prithvi Shaw vs West Indies in Rajkot in 2018
Though the young Prithvi Shaw is struggling to find his place in the Indian squad currently, he had a memorable outing in his debut Test at Rajkot when India faced West Indies in 2018. Batting first, three batters notched up centuries for India. Prithvi Shaw was commendable on debut, and Virat Kohli and Ravindra Jadeja followed him them as India posted 649 runs. The Windies bundled out for 181 and 196 in the two innings as India clinched an innings and 272-run victory.
2. Shreyas Iyer vs New Zealand in Kanpur in 2021
In Shreyas Iyers’ maiden Test match for India, the middle-order batter scored a brilliant century in the very first innings, which took India’s total to 345 in the first innings. Shreyas continued his good form even in the second innings as he scored a half-century, thereby finishing with 65 runs in 125 deliveries after his 105(171). The match ended in a draw but Iyer win the POTM award for his outstanding innings.
1. Yashasvi Jaiswal vs West Indies in Roseau in 2023
India’s latest debutant Yashasvi Jaiswal was just outstanding in his first-ever red-ball game for India when he made his debut against the West Indies in Dominica. A brilliant bowling display by the spinners saw the hosts closing their innings with mere 150 runs on board. In reply, young Jaiswal joined hands with skipper Rohit Sharma as the opening pair put up a 229-run partnership. While Rohit was dismissed soon after scoring his century on Day 2, Jaiswal, after getting a ton, continued to bat the next day on Day 3 and finished with 171(387).