Paul Valthaty’s maiden IPL century: The Punjabi batsman put on display one of the most surprising innings in the Indian Premier League.
On this day in 2011, Kings XI Punjab batsman Paul Valthaty surprised one and all by smashing his maiden T20 century in a daunting chase against Chennai Super Kings in Mohali during the fourth season of the Indian Premier League.
After the then Kings XI captain Adam Gilchrist won the toss and invited Super Kings in to bat, the visitors posted a comprehensive 188/4 in their allotted quota of 20 overs on the back of individual half-centuries from Murali Vijay (74) and Subramaniam Badrinath (66*).
Opening the batting with Gilchrist (19), Valthaty heavily dominated in the first two partnerships with his captain and batsman Shaun Marsh (12).
Valthaty, who hit a four off every over in the powerplay, received a major reprieve when Chennai all-rounder Albie Morkel dropped him off spinner Ravichandran Ashwin in the third over. It was on the third delivery of the seventh over that Valthaty ran a single off CSK spinner Suraj Randiv to complete a 23-ball half-century.
Looking to make the most of Morkel’s error, the right-hand batsman propelled the hosts to 99/1 at the halfway mark. Despite Punjab losing wickets from the other end, Valthaty made it a point to not just secure one end but also continue the brisk run-flow.
Paul Valthaty’s maiden IPL century
With Dinesh Karthik coming in to bat at Number 6, Kings XI required 51 runs in the last five overs. A match-winning 57-run partnership saw Valthaty playing a pivotal part for the third time in an affirmative partnership for his team.
Valthaty, then 27, hit a four off Morkel on the second delivery of the 17th over to reach the three-figure mark. Having punished all the opposition bowlers, Valthaty ended up scoring 120* (63) with the help of 19 fours and two sixes.
In IPL 2011, Valthaty scored a total of 463 runs in 14 matches at an average of 35.61 and a strike rate of 136.98 including one century and two half-centuries.
Having made his First-class debut for Mumbai in 2006, Valthaty went on to play two more seasons for Punjab and represented Himachal Pradesh in domestic tournaments but never achieved the same level of success.