On this day in 1990, India’s batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar smashed a breathtaking fifty against Sri Lanka in Pune to announce his arrival on the world stage. Tendulkar smashed his maiden ODI half-century during the second ODI match of the three-match series between India and Sri Lanka. It must be mentioned that Tendulkar struck his first fifty in one-dayers, a year after his ODI debut in 1989 against Pakistan.
Interestingly, at the time he was just 17-year-old, thus becoming the youngest cricketer to achieve the said feat. Tendulkar’s record stood tall among a plethora of other records for almost two decades before teenage Indian sensation Shafali Verma surpassed it in 2019.
Tendulkar scored 53 runs off 41 balls with the help of seven fours and one six as India defeated Sri Lanka by six wickets. Tendulkar was also active on the field after then Indian skipper Mohammad Azharuddin invited the visitors to bat first to exploit the damp condition of the pitch. During Sri Lanka’s first innings, the stylish right-handed cricketer was involved in as many as five dismissals directly.
Apart from taking the wickets of Dammika Ranatunga and Roshan Mahanama with his medium-pace bowling, Tendulkar performed well on the field too. He took the catch of Asanka Gurusinha and Rumesh Ratnayake. He also affected then Sri Lankan skipper Arjuna Ranatunga’s run-out, who scored a quickfire 58 runs off 27 balls.
Despite the troubling conditions of Pune ground, Sri Lanka managed to post a respectable total of 227 runs for the loss of eight wickets in their quota of ten overs. In reply, India won the match by six wickets with 21 balls to spare.
Chasing 228 to win, Indian openers Ravi Shastri (53 runs off 88 balls) and Navjot Singh Sidhu (38 runs off 63 balls) gave the home side a flying start as they added 76 runs for the first wicket. However, the back to back departure of Shastri and Sidhu put India in a spot of bother before Tendulkar and Azharuddin (52 runs off 49 balls) finished the game in style.