Ind vs Aus 4th Test: Like ODI and T20I debut, Natarajan creates record on Test debut as well: Indian pacer T Natarajan added another feather to his hat as he finished the first innings of India vs Australia fourth Test in Brisbane with the figures of 3 for 78 which is the second-best figure by an Indian left-arm fast bowler on Test debut.
Natarajan, who on Friday made his Test debut to become the first Indian player to make debuts in all 3 formats — T20I, ODI and Test on the same tour, removed centurion Marnus Labuschagne, Matthew Wade and Josh Hazlewood as India bowled out Australia for 369.
Notably, this is the 2nd best figures for an Indian left-arm pacer on debut after RP Singh’s 4 for 89 against Pakistan back in 2005/06.
Best figures in debut innings by a left-arm seamer (India)
- 4/89 RP Singh v Pakistan Faisalabad 2005/06
- 3/78 T NATARAJAN v Australia Brisbane 2020/21 *
- 3/97 SS Nyalchand v Pakistan Lucknow 1952/53
Interestingly, Thangarasu Natarajan has picked up at least two wickets on his ODI debut, T20I debut, and then on Test debut. He is only the 2nd Indian player after Zaheer Khan to claim multiple wickets on the first day of Test, ODI, and T20I careers.
Ind vs Aus 4th Test: T Natarajan’s saga continues in Australia; Spearheads India in Bumrah’s absence, takes 3 wickets on Test debut
When Thangarasu Natarajan boarded the flight to Australia, little did he know that he will return home as an international in all the three formats. The 29-year-old Test debutant was picked in the squad as a replacement for Jasprit Bumrah who was ruled out due to abdominal strain. And the Salem-born did what was asked of him. He took two crucial wickets in Mathew Wade (45) and centurion Marnus Labuschagne in quick succession at Gabba on day 1 of the fourth and final Test of Border Gavaskar Trophy and then on day 2 he removed Hazlewood to end Australia’s innings.
Ind vs Aus: Natarajan’s fairytale journey
Nattu, commonly called by teammate, travelled to Down Under as part of a jumbo Indian squad and with the reputation of being a T20 specialist. With 15 List-A games, 20 First-class games, and 37 T20I matches to his credit, he would have been considered lucky when he was handed his ODI debut cap in the final 50-over game. But he showed his class with the white-ball, taking two wickets in his first 10 overs of international career.
Then T20 debut, his preferred format, courtesy of his IPL 2020 performance, followed and he took his game a notch-up. Natarajan took six wickets. And although Hardik Pandya was adjudged the Man of the Series, he was widely acknowledged, even by Pandya, as the best Indian on show through the series.
On to the Test series, with two net bowlers short — the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) named four net bowlers but Kamlesh Nagarkoti did not travel with the team and Ishan Porel returned home owing to a hamstring injury— Natarajan stayed back.
Nattu was in for another surprise. With multiple injuries — Mohammed Shami in the first Test, Umesh Yadav in second and Bumrah in the third — Natarajan got the unlikely nod alongside Shardul Thakur and Washington Sundar.