109* Vs England: When Ajit Agarkar Hit A Century At Lord’s


Ajit Agarkar made his debut in the team back in 1998, as a bowling allrounder. He managed to become the fastest to reach 50 wickets at the time. He showed promise with the bat as he scored the faster 50 for India to date back in 2000. And soon enough comparisons with Kapil Dev started. However, he was soon given the nickname ‘Bombay Duck’ after he scored 7 straight ducks against Australia across 2 continents and 3 seasons. In 2002, he gave a good reply to all these critics and proved his batting prowess by hitting a century at Lords! He was able to hit a century at Lord’s Cricket Ground a feat which evaded legends like Sunil Gavaskar, Sachin Tendulkar, and Virat Kohli.

Agarkar mentioned in the Lords Honours Board

It happened in India’s tour of England in 2002, in the first test match of the 4-match series. England batted way better in both innings and set a huge target of 578 for India to chase. While victory looked anything but a distant hope, one would expect that the Indian batting stars, Sehwag, Tendulkar, Dravid, and Ganguly would be the ones who would take India close to the total.

Ajit Agarkar’s Century: 109*

However, it was a very unexpected innings from Ajit Agarkar which made the match interesting. He walked in when the team was struggling at 170/6, and before this innings, he had made only 127 career runs at an average of less than 8.

He first stitched a partnership with VVS Laxman and then played his shots while batting with Ashish Nehra who was the 11th batsman before he ran out of partners at the other end. Agarkar scored 109 runs off 190 balls and hit 16 boundaries. While India still lost the match by 170 runs, this inning by Agarkar will always be remembered. He made sure that India put on a fight and tried his best to delay the inevitable loss.

By this amazing innings, he achieved the fascinating feat of hitting a century at Lords and got his name edged in the Lord’s Honours Boards! Something which even the great master blaster Sachin Tendulkar couldn’t do in his career.


Indian Batsman With Century At Lord’s 

Other Indian batsmen to have achieved the same feat are; KL Rahul in 2021, Ajinkya Rahane in 2014, Rahul Dravid in 2011, Sourav Ganguly in 1996, Azharuddin and Ravi Shastri in 1990, G Viswanath in 1979, M Mankad in 1952. Dilip Vengsarkar managed to hit a century at Lord’s 3 times!

The feat of a century at Lord’s was eluded by some legendary batsmen like Sachin Tendulkar, J Kallis, Sunil Gavaskar, Virat Kohli, Brian Lara, and even Ricky Ponting.

The reason hitting a century at Lord’s is so special is that it is considered the Home of Cricket. It is a stadium that is 200+ years old and is considered iconic in its aesthetics. It has the iconic Lord’s balcony and is a stadium that has hosted many rememberable matches.

Agarkar ended up having a glorious career in Indian cricket, though I feel he is still not considered a legend as he should be. He ended up playing 26 Tests and 191 ODIs. He scored 3 50s in ODIs and also broke the record for the fastest 50 in ODIs for India. He ended up with 571 Test runs and 1269 ODI career runs. He ended with 288 ODI wickets and 58 Test wickets. He also holds the record for quickest (in terms of matches) to 1000 runs and 200 wickets in ODIs doing it in just 133 matches.

With that we come to the end of this article, we hope there are many Indians in the future who are able to achieve the same feat, maybe Shubhman Gill? Well, that is something I would love to see. Till then we bid adieu, share this article with your friends and family if you enjoyed reading this.

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