Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 7 December 2019

Sachin Tendulkar's 30-year-old batting record broken by a 15-year-old

Shafali Verma the youngest Indian in history to score an international half-century

Shafali Verma in training for the series against the West Indies, where she has broken Sachin Tendulkar's 30-year-old record. AFP
Shafali Verma in training for the series against the West Indies, where she has broken Sachin Tendulkar's 30-year-old record. AFP

Sachin Tendulkar's 30-year-old record as the youngest player to score a half-century for India has been broken by a 15-year-old girl.

Shafali Verma, who grew up idolising Tendulkar and is still at school, has smashed half-centuries in succesive days for India in their five-match Twenty20 series against the West Indies.

Verma became the youngest cricketer to play for India in a T20 game when she made her debut against South Africa in October, scoring an impressive 46.

Now she has reached new levels, hitting 73 off 49 balls in the frst game of the series in St Lucia on Saturday, and then following up with 69 not out from only 35 balls - including four sixes and two fours - in a 10-wicket victory at the same venue 24 hours later.

Tendulkar was 16 years and 214 days when he made a half-century in a Test against Pakistan in Faisalabad in 1989. Verma did it at 15 years and 285 days.

The Indian batter is the second youngest to score an international T20 half-century - the record being held by the UAE's Kavisha Egodage, who was 15 years and 267 days when she achieved the milestone.

She has said before her debut that beating Tendulkar's record was one of her targets. "I always had in mind that I have to represent my country before Sachin sir had," she said.

Verma added that "The Little Master" Tendulkar was a favourite of everyone at home. "My entire family loves him. My father used to show me his batting videos from the very beginning. He’s everybody’s favourite at my house."

Updated: November 11, 2019 12:49 PM

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