Photo credit: BCCI/Twitter

Mayank Agarwal has made a brilliant start to his Indian cricket career, after scoring a resolute 76 on his Test debut against Australia at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. The opening batsman displayed a masterclass in Test cricket, in an innings that has earned him acclaim from the cricketing fraternity, particularly from a fellow Kings XI Punjab player.

Agarwal was given his Test debut after previous openers Lokesh Rahul and Murali Vijay fell short. Opening the batting alongside Hanuma Vihari, the 27-year-old showed great application and confidence against the ferocious Australian bowling attack.

Despite losing Vihari after a 40 run stand, Agarwal batted brilliantly, bringing up his half century with a brilliant straight drive off Nathan Lyon.

The Karnataka batsman took the attack to the Aussie bowlers, scoring eight fours and a six in his knock of 76, before being dismissed by Cummins. He was just one run short of equalling Sudhir Naik’s 44 year record for the highest score by an Indian debutant in away Tests. Nevertheless, Agarwal has now become the first Indian opener to score a fifty away in Australia and also holds the record for the highest score by an Indian on debut against the team from Down Under.

He’s also just the third player this year to score a fifty on his Test debut, after Fakhar Zaman and Aaron Finch, setting ablaze a Twitter storm in adulation to his knock.