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Rohit Sharma, Mayank Agarwal mark a new opening partnership record
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Rohit Sharma, Mayank Agarwal mark a new opening partnership record

Agency News

Rohit Sharma and Mayank Agarwal have made a new record scoring the highest opening partnership of more than 317 runs in the Test against South Africa.

The partnership was broken by Quinton De Cock scalping Rohit Sharma who allowed a catch to Keshav Maharaj when his score was at 176. By that time, the duo has broken a 15-year-old record owned Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir in which they scored 218 in their opening partnership for India in a Test match against South Africa. Mayank Agarwal and Rohit Sharma went past 218 -- the tally achieved by Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir in Kanpur in 2004-05 season -- in the morning session of Day 2 of the ongoing 1st Test in Visakhapatnam.

Incidentally, Rohit and Mayank have also bagged a new record for the highest opening stand in India vs South Africa Tests previously held by AC Hudson and Gary Kirsten in 1996. The India duo broke the 22-year-old record when the opening stand went past 236 runs on Thursday.

Rohit and Mayank carried on and took their opening stand past the 300-run mark. They have become only the third Indian opening pair after Vinoo Mankad and Pankaj Roy and Rahul Dravid and Virender Sehwag to post 300-plus stand for the 1st wicket in Tests. This was also only the 14th instance in Test cricket that an opening pair has posted more than 300 runs.

Rohit Sharma had completed his fourth Test hundred and his first as opener on Wednesday itself. India made the gamble to promote Rohit to the top of the batting order after consistent failures from the likes of KL Rahul, Murali Vijay and Shikhar Dhawan in Tests over the last 24 months.

In fact, Rohit Sharma and Mayank Agarwal became India's 9th different opening pair since July 2017. India, it seems, have finally found success, considering the dominant fashion in which Mayank and Rohit have gone about their business in the ongoing Test against South Africa.

Mayank and Rohit contiued dominating the bowlers as India began Day 2 on overnight score of 202 for 0. Mayank completed his maiden Test hundred inside the first hour of Day 2 as the Indian openers showed no signs of slowing down.

It is also the 10th instance of both the Indian openers scoring hundreds in the same innings of a Test match. The last Indian pair to do so was Murali Vijay and Shikhar Dhawan in 2018 against Afghanistan in Bengaluru.

There was no stopping the two batsmen once they settled into their innings. The duo was severe against South Africa spinners with both Rohit and Mayank hitting them at will.