Sakibul Gani, Bihar’s 22-year-old batter, marked his name in the history of cricket becoming the first player to score a triple hundred milestone in the first-class debut.
The return of the Ranji Trophy after two years witnessed this record-hitting innings in the match between Bihar and Mizoram at Jadavpur University Campus 2nd Ground in Kolkata. Gani’s superb hit with 2 sixes and 54 fours found its partnership with Babul Kumar’s double-century innings of 229 to amass a mighty 686 for Bihar, while they declared with 5 wickets left in 159.4 overs.
The broken record on the first class debut was of Ajay Rohera in the 2018-19 Ranji Trophy season for Madhya Pradesh, where he scored 260 not out against Hyderabad.
Bihar was at 71 for 3 in the 23rd over while Gani came in. he scored 136 overnight on the first day and extended more than 200 runs on the second day. Mizoram’s left-arm spinner Iqbal Abdullah put an end to Gani’s historic knock while he was at 341.
The talent in Gani was spotted by the former Indian wicketkeeper Ajar Ratra during the squad selection camp for CK Nayudu Trophy at Moin-ul-Haq Stadium in Patna. Ratra was Bihar’s U-23 coach while he spotted Gani and currently he is coaching the Assan Ranji trophy cricket team.
“What caught my eye was his fearless strokeplay. He was a class apart among the lot. I immediately checked his score in the local circuit. He can bat anywhere in the top 6,” Ratra told to The Indian Express.
Mohammed Manan Gani, Shakibul Gani’s father, is a farmer who didn’t entertain his son being a cricketer. But his elder brother Faisal Gani-who himself was a cricketer but had to quit because of cricket’s bad fortune in Bihar and currently runs a sports shop in Motihari- trained him for fifteen years.
“I played Cooch Behar (Under-19) Trophy with the Bihar Associate team in 2009-10. Thereafter, I captained the East Zone in the Vizzy Trophy, but I quit cricket because it had no future in Bihar. Even When I stopped playing cricket, I made sure Sakib would not skip a single training session. I had decided that I would send him to Ranchi so that he can play for Jharkhand,” Faisal said to the newspaper.
Gani has already played 14 List A and 11 T20s with an average of 31.41 and 27.42 in both formats respectively. his debut in List A cricket was in 2019 and in 2021, he made his maiden T20 appearance.
“Congratulations to Sakibul Gani for a solid performance in his debut Ranji Trophy match. Keep it up,” read a tweet by cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar.
“Historic moment for Bihar,” tweeted Opposition leader in Bihar Assembly Tejashwi Yadav while congratulating Gani.