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Friday Nov 15 2019
Web Desk

On this day in 1989: Waqar, Tendulkar make contrasting Test debuts in Karachi

Web Desk
Saching Tendulkar and Waqar Younis in action. — Photo courtesy: ICC/Twitter

It's rare for two all-time great Test cricketers to start their careers on the same day and in the same match.

That happened exactly 30 years ago today when legendary Pakistani fast bowler Waqar Younis and Little Master Sachin Tendulkar both kicked off their storied journeys.

On November 15, 1989, when the first Test of India's tour of Pakistan began in Karachi, the visitors handed debut to Tendulkar, who was just 16 at the time and probably appeared 13.

At the same time, the home side gave the first-ever Test cap to Waqar, who was also just 18 at the time.

READ: Wasim, Waqar salute "special" Tendulkar

Surprisingly, on the very first day of their Test careers, Waqar did not get to bowl while Tendulkar did not get to bat. This was down to India deciding to field first.

Tendulkar did get to bowl an over in the first innings, conceding 10 runs and swiftly removed from the attack. Waqar, meanwhile, was out for a duck — a clear indication that an all-rounder he wasn't.

The future maestro scored just 15 runs in his first-ever Test innings, and the guy who bowled him out was none other than his fellow debutant from the other side: Waqar.

But in those 15 runs, Tendulkar showed enough strength and courage, copping enough body blows by Waqar and co to prove that he has game. 

READBradman Hall of Fame names Waqar Younis as honouree of the year

While his first foray was painful and forgettable, Waqar' was anything but. The Burewala Express bowled with pace and venom, and claimed four wickets — just as many as a certain someone named Wasim Akram. The great Imran Khan let his pups conduct the business then, bowling just 15 overs in the innings.

Records show that Waqar bowled only two overs in the second innings, which it's unclear why. Tendulkar, too, did not get to bat the second time as the two teams ran out of time and the match ended in a draw.

Despite their limited roles in their first-ever Tests, it was clear that two stars were born.