WTC Final: Shardul Thakur joins Sir Don Bradman and other veterans in the elite list with his half-century at The Oval

In a thrilling turn of events on Day 3 of the World Test Championship Final between Australia and India, Shardul Thakur showcased his batting prowess and etched his name in the record books. Joining hands with Ajinkya Rahane, Thakur played a crucial role in India’s fightback, as the duo stitched together a resilient 109-run partnership for the seventh wicket.

India’s innings had started on a shaky note, with the team struggling at 151/5 when Thakur took the crease. However, his partnership with Rahane not only stabilized the innings but also propelled the scorecard from 152/6 to a commendable 261/7. While Rahane fell agonizingly short of a well-deserved century, Thakur reached a significant milestone by registering his third half-century at The Oval.

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Thakur’s knock of 51 runs off 109 deliveries was nothing short of brilliance, effectively silencing his critics. His innings proved to be a fitting response to all the doubts and questions surrounding his batting abilities. Just when it seemed like India’s innings was coming to a close, the partnership between Rahane and Thakur breathed new life into the team, reigniting their hopes in the match.

Thakur’s innings consisted of six boundaries, showcasing his ability to find the gaps and rotate the strike. Batting at a strike rate of 46.78, he played a vital role in India’s resurgence. With this knock, Thakur joined Rahane as the second Indian player to score a half-century in the WTC Final, with Rahane achieving the feat earlier in the same innings.

Furthermore, Thakur’s batting heroics at The Oval earned him a unique place in the record books. He became only the second Indian player, after Rahane, to score a half-century batting at No. 8 in Tests. This remarkable achievement highlighted Thakur’s all-round skills and versatility as a cricketer.

Additionally, Thakur’s feat at The Oval placed him in an elite category, alongside legendary cricketers Sir Don Bradman and Allan Border. Bradman was the first player to accomplish the remarkable feat of scoring consecutive 50-plus scores at The Oval, achieving this milestone in 1930 and 1934. Border followed in Bradman’s footsteps, achieving the same feat by scoring back-to-back centuries in 1985 and 1989.