Sachin Tendulkar's five best performances before his international debut
Enough has been said and written about Master Blaster Sachin Tendulkar's 24 years of international cricket career. An international debut at 16 is an incredible start to a cricketing journey, but sustaining on the field for such a long span is a rarity.
Tendulkar made a dream debut against Pakistan in 1989 and was set to face Imran Khan, Wasim Akram and Abdul Qadir, the most feared bowlers of that era. He also hit Qadir for four sixes in an over during a 20-over exhibition match at Peshawar and left the Pakistan team in a fix.
The legendary batsman, groomed by Ramakant Achrekar, played a number of remarkable innings before donning the Indian jersey and surprised everyone in the cricketing circuit back then.
Here are some of his best such performances before his international debut.
First match of the Harris Shield Trophy, 1987-88:
During his early days playing for his school Sharadashram Vidyamandir, he played in both the Giles Shield and the Harris Shield tournament in 1987-88. These are the inter-school tournaments played in the Mumbai cricket circuit, the former by Under-14 and the latter by Under 16, and are regarded as the breeding grounds for young talents in the city.
14-year old Tendulkar amassed a record 1025 runs in five matches and remained unbeaten on four occasions. He scored 207 not out in the quarter-final, 326 not out in the semi-final and 346 in the final.
The right-hander started out by scoring 125 in the first match of the season, the only occasion when he was dismissed during the tournament. Tendulkar describes the dismissal as one of the most unforgettable moments in his autobiography, as he was stumped out in a ball bowled by a hearing-impaired player.