CHENNAI: As many as five List A records in men's cricket were rewritten at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru as Tamil Nadu thrashed Arunachal Pradesh in their Elite Group C match of the Vijay Hazare Trophy on Monday. Put into bat, wicketkeeper-batter Narayan Jagadeesan shattered the world record by hammering 277 off 141 runs as Tamil Nadu posted 506 for 2 in 50 overs and became the first team to breach 500-mark in List A cricket. The previous highest was 498 for 4 by England against the Netherlands earlier this year.
In reply, Arunachal Pradesh were bundled out for a paltry 71. M Siddharth scalped five wickets as Baba Indrajith-led side won the match by 435 runs, the biggest win in terms of runs in men's List A cricket.
Prior to Jagadeesan's 277, Alistair Brown's 268 against Glamorgan in 2002 was the highest individual score in men's List A cricket. Jagadeesan's score is also the highest score in all List A cricket, surpassing 271 not out by Sripali Weerakkody against Pushpadana Ladies in the 2007 Sri Lanka Women's one-day tournament.
The 26-year-old from Coimbatore Jagadeesan also became the first player to score hundreds in five consecutive innings in men's List A cricket. Previously, three batters had four centuries in a row Kumar Sangakkara in 2014-15, Alviro Petersen in 2015-16 and Devdutt Padikkal in 2020-21. He also stitched together 416 with his opening partner B Sai Sudharsan and in the process, they became the first pair to share a 400-run stand for any wicket in men's List A cricket. The previous highest partnership was 372 between Chris Gayle and Marlon Samuels for the second wicket against Zimbabwe in 2015.
''Really very happy to get that score (277). Did not expect to make this big hundred and the record. As I said earlier, I try to follow the process and enjoy my game. I do not play with runs in mind. I am happy that I have been able to carry the momentum and the flow in all the games. For me, enjoying my presence on the field is more important,'' said a modest Jagadeesan from Bengaluru after the day's play.
Jagadeesan took 114 balls to complete his double century, which is the joint-fastest in men's List A cricket. Travis Head also took 114 balls for his double ton against Queensland in the Marsh one-day cup last year. The TN cricketer hit 15 sixes in his innings, the most by any batter in a Vijay Hazare Trophy innings. The previous best was 12 sixes by Yashasvi Jaiswal during his 203 against Jharkhand in the 2019-20 season.
Does Jagadeesan expect the law of averages to catch up given his blazing form with the willow? ''I am not worried about runs. As I said before, if I enjoy my game and follow the process, things will automatically work."
TN coach M Venkataramana was all praise for Jagadeesan. ''Superb innings, simply out of the world. Adi pinnitaan (simply whacked the ball),'' he said. '' As I said earlier, Jags is in the zone. He is high on confidence and has realised his true potential and that's why runs are flowing from the meat of the blade,'' the coach complimented.
Jagadeesan's strike rate (196.45) is the highest for any double hundred in men's List A cricket. The previous highest was 181.1 by Head when he scored 230 off 127 balls against Queensland in 2021. None of the remaining 36 double-centuries in this format had a strike rate of more than 175.
Sai Sudarshan had the best seat in the house when Jagadeesan rewrote the record books. ''It was a brilliant effort from Jagadeesan. Fortunate to see him play from close quarters. I learnt a lot during my stay with him. Superb timing, judicious shot selection and splendid technique are the secrets behind Jagadeesan's success. Of the five centuries Jagadeesan made, I would consider the one against Haryana as his best as the attack was good,'' opined Sai Sudarshan.
Five centuries by Jagadeesan in the ongoing Vijay Hazare Trophy is the most by any batter in an edition. Virat Kohli (2008-09), Devdutt Padikkal (2020-21), Prithvi Shaw (2020-21) and Ruturaj Gaikwad (2021-22) — all had four tons apiece in an edition of the tournament.
The five consecutive centuries meant Jagadeesan has scored 799 runs in the tournament so far. As his team has qualified for the quarterfinals, he looks set to surpass Shaw, who holds the record for scoring the most runs in an edition. The latter had scored 827 runs during the 2020-21 season.
Former Tamil Nadu Ranji player and current member of the senior state selection committee R Venkatesh, who watched Jagadeesan in action in a couple of games in Bengaluru, doffs his hat to the opener. Incidentally, Venkatesh was the state coach when Jagadeesan was in his early teens.
''Super effort today by Jags. I watched his centuries against Haryana and Goa in Bengaluru. Even as a young boy in his U-14 days Jagadeesan had a lot of talent and showed us that he had the potential to go up the ladder. He is at the peak of his career now. I hope he continues in the same vein in the Ranji Trophy and other games (IPL) and so on,'' complimented Venkatesh.