Scoring a hundred in a Test match is a challenging task for any batsman. They have to grind it out in the middle, survive the initial uncertain phase and mix caution with aggression to get to the coveted three-figure mark.
It logically follows then that it would be even more challenging for a batsman to score two hundreds in the same Test. In the entire history of Indian cricket there have been only six Indian batsmen who have managed this feat.
Let us look at the batsmen who have managed to do so.
#6 Vijay Hazare
Vijay Hazare played 30 matches for India and scored 2192 runs at average of 47.65, including 7 hundreds and 9 fifties. Hazare was the first Indian batsman to score two hundreds in the same Test.
In the year 1948, during India’s tour of Australia, Hazare scored a magical 116 in the first innings. His knock helped India post 381 on the board, in reply to Australia’s mammoth first innings total of 674.
Australia then enforced the follow-on and it was Hazare again who shone with the willow. He scored a classy 145 in the second innings, as the other Indian batsmen fell like a pack of cards around him.
Hazare's Herculean effort went in vain as the hosts thrashed India by an innings and 16 runs.
In this match, Hazare also took the prized scalp of the legendary Sir Don Bradman in the first innings.
#5 Sunil Gavaskar
The legendary Sunil Gavaskar was the first batsman in the history of Test cricket to breach the 10,000-run mark. Gavaskar also retired as the highest century maker in Tests (34), before his record was broken by Sachin Tendulkar.
Gavaskar managed to score two hundreds in the same Test as many as three times in his illustrious career. When India toured West Indies in 1971, Gavaskar scored a magnificent 124 in the first innings, facing up to the legendary West Indian bowling attack of that time. He followed his first innings heroics with another splendid 220 in the second innings.
Gavaskar's marathon effort helped India salvage a draw.
The second time he scored two hundreds was against arch-rivals Pakistan in 1978. Gavaskar scored 111 runs in the first innings, and followed that with another hundred (137) in the second innings. However, that couldn't stop the hosts as Pakistan romped home with 8 wickets to spare.
When the West Indies toured India in 1978-79, Gavaskar’s mastery again shone through against the toughest bowling attack of that generation. In the first innings of the Kolkata Test Gavaskar scored 107, and he followed that up with 182* in the second.
Gavaskar is the only Indian batsman to score two hundreds in the same Test thrice.
Also see – World Test Championship points table
#4 Rahul Dravid
Dravid managed to score two hundreds in a Test twice in his illustrious 16-year career. The first such instance was at Seddon Park against New Zealand in 1999. In the first innings Dravid scored a flawless 190, and he followed that up with a classy 103 in the second essay. Dravid’s heroics ensured that India drew a high-scoring affair against the Kiwis.
The second occasion when Dravid scored two hundreds in the same Test was in the year 2005, against Pakistan at the iconic Eden Gardens. In the first innings Dravid scored 110 runs, and he followed that up with a knock of 135 in the second.
#3 Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli has emerged as the monarch of modern-day cricket, and is viewed by many as the heir apparent to Sachin Tendulkar’s legacy.
In the year 2014 at the Adelaide Oval, Kohli used the willow in his hand like a magic wand and pulverized the Australian bowling attack. In the first innings he scored an ethereal 115, taking the attack to the likes of Mitchell Johnson and Nathan Lyon.
In the second essay, with India chasing an improbable 364, Kohli got India close to the finish line with an imperious 141. However, the batting maestro’s efforts went in vain as Australia won the match by 48 runs.
#2 Ajinkya Rahane
Ajinkya Rahane is a diminutive stroke-maker whose ability to time the ball with ease and pick gaps in the field with precision makes him a joy to watch.
In the year 2015, Rahane tamed the South African bowling attack with fierce square cuts and delectable drives to score two hundreds in the same Test. In the first innings Rahane stroked a splendid 127, and he followed that up with a 100* in the second.
Rahane’s efforts helped India thrash South Africa by 337 runs.
#1 Rohit Sharma
The latest entrant in the list is Rohit Sharma.
Rohit marked his first Test as opener in style, smashing hundreds in both innings of the match against South Africa in October 2019. In the first innings Rohit pummeled 176 runs, inclusive of 23 fours and 6 sixes. His carnage at the top of the order along with Mayank Agarwal’s 215 propelled India to a total of 502.
In the second innings, Rohit scored a classy 127 off just 149 balls. His knock helped India thrash South Africa by 203 runs.
Rohit broke a plethora of records during this knock. His 13 sixes in the match is the highest by any batsman in Tests; he went past Wasim Akram, who hit 12 sixes against Zimbabwe in the year 1996.
Rohit became the first cricketer in history to score centuries in both innings in his first Test as an opener. He also became the first batsman ever to record seven successive scores of fifty or more on Indian soil.