Deepak Hooda with his India cap Image: BCCI
Deepak Hooda with his India cap Image: BCCI

Deepak Hooda became the fourth centurion for India in the T20 format, after his breathtaking 104 off 57 balls against Ireland at Malahide on Tuesday, 28 June. Deepak Hooda’s ability to access all parts of the ground without losing his shape awed the fans in the packed stadium in Ireland as India made merry and put up 225 runs in 20 overs, largely due to the partnership between Deepak Hooda and Sanju Samson.

With the T20 World Cup approaching in Australia later this year, and the initial India squad yet to be finalized, fans flocked to their social media to express their support for the Lucknow Super Giants batter who has been in stunning form since April 2022.

 Deepak Hooda plays a shot against Ireland. (Courtesy: BCCI/PTI)
Deepak Hooda plays a shot against Ireland. (Courtesy: BCCI/PTI)

Deepak Hooda Owned This Series: Aakash Chopra

Deepak Hooda was awarded a spot on the Indian side after his brilliant form in the IPL, a tournament where he was solely responsible for the acceleration in the middle overs for LSG. The Rohtak born repaid the faith of the selectors, hitting a stroke-filled 47 off 29 balls in the first match and then turning up with a century in the second one.

Deepak Hooda had the likes of Aakash Chopra and Sanjay Manjrekar in awe, who took to Twitter to express their support for the player.

Aakash Chopra
Aakash Chopra. (Photo Source: Twitter)

“Hooda owned this series. Totally. And he happens to be the man who’s not got enough chances but how do you accommodate him when the senior guys are back? The run-up to the World Cup is going to be really entertaining,” wrote Aakash Chopra.

India defeated Ireland by a narrow margin of four runs in the second and the final T20I. Deepak Hooda starred in a stunning century for India. He became the only fourth Indian player after Suresh Raina, Rohit Sharma, and KL Rahul to register a century in the T20I format.

Deepak Hooda’s Rise Is Phenomenal: Sanjay Manjrekar

In his two outings against Ireland, Deepak Hooda scored 151 runs, including 104 off 57 balls in the second T20I. Deepak Hooda played for Lucknow Super Giants in the 2022 IPL earlier this year. He amassed 451 runs in 15 matches at a strike rate of 136.67. After an impressive campaign with Lucknow Super Giants, he was added to the Indian squad.

“What a phenomenal rise it’s been for Hooda! A unique way of creating opportunities for big-hitting. Steps out at the last second to surprise the seam bowlers. Ends up hitting boundaries off good balls bowled in the stumps. Nightmare for bowlers,” Sanjay Manjrekar expressed.
Sanjay Manjrekar | Sportzpics
Sanjay Manjrekar | Sportzpics
India has tough competition in the batting order going into the World Cup and it will be made further difficult if the squad, especially its senior members, remain fully fit. With the likes of Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, and Virat Kohli occupying the top three positions, it will be interesting to watch how the Indian team manages to make its selection calls for the 2022 T20I World Cup.
India 225 for 7 (Hooda 104, Samson 77, Adair 3-42) beat Ireland 221 for 5 (Balbirnie 60, Stirling 40, Tector 39, Dockrell 34*, Bishnoi 1-41) by four runs