"Luckily, I had...": Rachin Ravindra talks about 'great guy' who helped him score maiden ODI ton

In a thrilling World Cup opener, New Zealand pulled off a stunning victory against England with the spotlight firmly on two debutants - Rachin Ravindra and Devon Conway.

 
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In a thrilling World Cup opener, New Zealand pulled off a stunning victory against England, with the spotlight firmly on two debutants, Rachin Ravindra and Devon Conway. The match, held at the Narendra Modi Stadium, showcased the remarkable performances of these two rising stars, who left a significant mark on the cricketing world.

Both Ravindra and Conway were making their World Cup debuts, but it was Conway's gesture of humility that stole the show. Despite being the top-scorer of the match with an outstanding century, Conway asked his teammate Ravindra to walk out before him, allowing the younger cricketer to bask in the limelight. This act of camaraderie set the tone for a memorable day of cricket.

"Luckily I had Devon out to show me how to do it. [I am] very very close with Devon. Special to finish it off with him," Ravindra at the post-match presentation.  

Ravindra, who had earlier impressed with a brilliant 97 against Pakistan in a warm-up match, was not initially in the starting XI. However, due to Lockie Ferguson's injury, he got a last-minute opportunity and was met with a fiery welcome by fellow debutant Harry Brook, who smashed him for two fours and a six. Ravindra did manage to take Brook's wicket in the same over but ended up as the second-most expensive bowler for New Zealand, conceding 76 runs in ten overs.

When he walked out to bat, the situation was far from ideal for Ravindra. Will Young had just been dismissed for a duck, and he found himself batting at number three, a position usually occupied by the legendary Kane Williamson. Despite this unfamiliar role, Ravindra looked completely at ease in the middle, showcasing his adaptability and composure. 

England employed Moeen Ali extensively against the left-handed duo, but while Conway was cautious against the off-breaks, Ravindra took a liking to Moeen's bowling, scoring 41 runs off the 30 balls he faced from him.

Ravindra and Conway share a partnership in domestic cricket too

One of the highlights of Ravindra's performance was his partnership with Conway, who is not only his teammate on the international stage but also at the domestic level with Wellington. Their strong friendship and chemistry on the field were evident as they combined to create an impressive 273-run partnership, the fourth-highest in World Cup history and the highest for New Zealand in the tournament's history.

Conway's century, achieved in just 83 balls, made him the fastest New Zealander to reach a World Cup century, but Ravindra was not far behind, reaching his hundred in 82 balls. Despite the immense pressure of the World Cup stage, both young talents exhibited remarkable control and maturity in their batting.

The partnership between Ravindra and Conway left England's bowlers in disarray, and it was a day of records for the debutants. Conway became the fastest Black Caps batter to score 1000 runs, while Ravindra became the youngest New Zealander to register a World Cup century.

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For Ravindra, the match held special significance as his ancestral roots trace back to India, where his family was once based. Interestingly, he was named after two cricketing legends, Rahul Dravid and Sachin Tendulkar, both of whom he deeply admires. With Tendulkar present at the ground, it was a fitting moment for Ravindra to score his maiden international century in the country of his ancestors.

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