It’s difficult to recall when, if ever, did an Indian pacer bowled with the kind of fire Mohammad Shami breathed at the Eden Gardens on Friday. It not only decimated the West Indies, earned India an innings win inside three days and gifted Sachin Tendulkar a win in his 199th and last Test at the Eden Gardens, but also perched Shami on top of the list of best fast-bowling debuts by an Indian.
Shami, who rattled the Windies with 4 for 71 in the first innings, made the old ball talk on the third afternoon as well with a five-for (5 for 47) debut. And his match haul of 9 for 118 earned Shami the distinction of best figures registered by an Indian pacer on debut.
Six of Shami’s nine wickets in the match came as bowled, stressing on the fact that he not only is pacy to go through batsmen’s defences but also bowls a nagging, testing line that makes batsmen play rather than leave the ball.
Going back to the record Shami set on a dream Test debut, here is the list of top three best fast-bowling debuts for India.
Mohammad Shami: 9 wickets, 2013
Munaf Patel: 7 wickets, 2006
Abid Ali: 7 wickets, 1967