‘Whenever I need runs…’: Abhishek Sharma reveals secret behind maiden T20I century

Sharma topped off his century with a brilliant flourish of three consecutive sixes, bumping up the score from 82 to 100

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After getting dismissed for a duck on his India debut on July 6, it was redemption the next day for the 23-year-old opener from Amritsar, Abhishek Sharma, who put up a masterclass performance, scoring a century off 47 balls with 7 fours and 8 sixes, the third fastest century in India’s history. Not only this, but he topped off his century with a brilliant flourish of three consecutive sixes, bumping up the score from 82 to 100. With this he became the first Indian player to lob off his century with a hattrick of sixes. After the heart-sinking performance, you might be wondering how did the young upstart manage to swing the fortunes around. He gives the credit to his skipper, Shubman Gill’s bat:

During the post-match press-conference, Abhishek revealed that he used his skipper's (Shubman Gill) bat and also explained that it was not the first time he had done the same. "I think my performance today was quite good, especially considering the tough defeat we faced yesterday. I felt that today was my day, and I made it count… I played with Shubman’s bat today - I did it earlier also. Whenever I need runs - I ask for his bat,” Abhishek said.

Both Shubman and Abhishek have been playing together since their time with the domestic cricket side of Punjab, and share a healthy relationship.  “We are playing together from Under-12. When I was selected for the country, the first call I received was from Shubman” said Shubman on his relationship with Shubman Gill. Even during the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024, Abhishek was seen taking Shubman to meet his family in the stands for Sunrisers Hydarabad’s (SRH) clash against Gujarat Titans (GT).

Talking about the match, Sharma played a brilliant innings, scoring 100 runs off 47 balls with 7 fours and 8 sixes before being caught by Myers off Masakadza. Ruturaj Gaikwad remained unbeaten with 77 runs off 47 balls, hitting 11 fours and 1 six, while Rinku Singh also stayed not out, smashing 48 runs off 22 balls with 2 fours and 5 sixes. In response, Zimbabwe was all out for 134 in 18.4 overs. Wessly Madhevere was the top scorer with 43 runs off 39 balls. The Indian bowlers kept constant pressure on the hosts, maintaining control over their scoring rate. Mukesh Kumar and Avesh Khan were the most successful bowlers, each taking three wickets. Ravi Bishnoi claimed two wickets, while Washington Sundar took one.