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15-year-old prodigy Shafali Verma shatters Tendulkar's record
Newest Cricket Phenom

15-year-old prodigy Shafali Verma shatters Tendulkar's record

Shafali Verma, who hails from Haryana, shook the cricket world by becoming the youngest Indian cricketer to hit a fifty in international cricket against West Indies in the ongoing T20 series. She has tumbled the little master Sachin Tendulkar's 30-year record. 

Tendulkar struck his first half-century against Pakistan at Faislabad back in 1989 when he was 16 and now it's Shafali, who has broken her idol's record by reaching the feat at the tender age of 15. 

The 15-year-old is also the youngest cricketer for India to appear in a T20I game as she made her debut against Proteas last month with a quickfire 46.

The new sensation in the block who has also featured in the Women’s IPL this year may well have solved the opening pair troubles for India. 

Shafali has got an opportunity to make a mark in the upcoming women's T20 World Cup in Australia that will kick off in February.

The newest cricket phenom showed no signs of fluster and clubbed four sixes and smashed six fours in her 73 run match-winning innings that helped India run over West Indies in the first T20I on November 9. 

Shafali followed her first match heroics with a staggering performance the very next day by thumping an unbeaten 69 run knock, smothering 10 fours and two maximums, in the second T20I and chased down the untaxing total of 104 with 57 balls to spare. 

In her early days of playing cricket, the super talented batsman pretended to be a boy so she could play at the cricket academy in her town as there were no playing centres for girls. She had to trim her hair on the advice of her father - who was her first trainer - as every cricket academy denied her admission. 

"It was a struggle initially, playing against the boys. Even after I started playing, people said girls have no future in cricket. But dad shielded me from any cynicism and asked me to focus on cricket only," she told Reuters.  

This compelling story of perseverance and breaking stereotypes is going to inspire many young girls to pursue cricket as a profession in the subcontinent - where cultural and infrastructure-related obstacles often hamper women's sports. 

"Danielle Wyatt – who happens to be one of my favourites. One thing she told me that I won’t ever forget is never change your game," she told Female Cricket

The prolific star in the making is a great find for India who can go on to serve her country for years to come.