KL Rahul became the first Indian batsman to score seven consecutive half-centuries when he managed yet another fifty on the first day of the third Test against Sri Lanka at Pallekelle. With this, Rahul levelled the world record of seven consecutive half-centuries in Tests and joined an elite group.
India made a thumping start to the third Test against Sri Lanka as both the Indian openers went past their respective fifties and in Rahul's case his half-century proved to be a record breaking one as he went past Rahul Dravid and Gundappa Viswanath's tally of six consecutive half-centuries.
The Karnataka batsman joined the elite club consisting the likes of West Indianns Everton Weekes and Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Sri Lankan Kumar Sangakkara, Australia Cris Rogers and Zimbabwean Andy Flower while equalling the world record for the most consecutive half-centuries in Tests.
The 25-year brought up his seventh consecutive fifty in the 20th over of the Indian innings by clipping a Lahiru Kumara delivery towards the leg side for an easy two runs. Before this innings, Rahul had six consecutive fifties to his name and had already surpassed the Sunil Gavaskar, Dilip Vengsarkar, Sanjay Manjrekar, and Navjot Sidhu, who all scored five straight half-centuries during their respective Test careers.
The Indian opener missed the first Test due to viral fever but made a triumphant return in the second Test in Colombo after a successful home series against Australia during which he scored five consecutive half-centuries and helped India emerge victorious in the series after the home side lost the first match to the Kangaroos.
Rahul previously had scores of 90, 51, 67, 60 and 51* against the Aussies and followed it up with a score of 57 against Sri Lanka. The 25-year old has become India's undisputed first choice opener in Tests with four centuries and nine fifties to his name at an average of 44 runs per innings.
Rahul was eventually dismissed for 85 but managed to put up the 188- run opening partnership with Shikhar Dhawan and thereby put India in a commanding position in the ongoing match.