Ajinkya Rahane, Hampshire, County Cricket
Ajinkya Rahane scored 119 from 197 balls, hitting 14 ours, as he and Hampshire skipper Sam Northeast put up a 257-run partnership. @PTI

Ajinkya Rahane made a bright start to his county stint as he scored a hundred for Hampshire on debut. The Indian Test vice-captain scored 119 against Nottinghamshire as he became only the third Indian to score a ton on county debut.

Rahane hit 14 fours in his 197-ball stay in the middle as he and Hampshire skipper Sam Northeast, who also scored a ton, put up a 257-run partnership.

Before Rahane, Murali Vijay and Piyush Chawla had scored hundreds in their first match in the county cricket. While Vijay scored a hundred for Essex against Nottinghamshire in 2018, Chawla scored a ton for Sussex against Worcestershire in 2008.

While Rahane could only score 10 runs as Hampshire scored 310 in the first innings before securing a 71-run lead, the right-hander notched up his first hundred in the second innings and helped his side recover from the early loss of the openers – Joe Weatherley and Oliver Soames. (ALSO READ: Pujara, Rahane, Shaw among seven Indian players to play County cricket before World Test Championship)

Rahane, who had joined the team as a replacement for the World Cup-bound South African batsman Aiden Markram, was the first Indian to join the Hampshire county side.

He is expected to play for Hampshire in eight matches, including the ongoing game, during the Specsavers County Championship matches, which will take place throughout May, June and July. (ALSO READ: Momentum and consistency will be important for India at the World Cup: Rahane)

Rahane, who was not picked in India’s 15-man World Cup squad, has scored 3488 runs in 56 Tests for India in addition to his runs in ODIs and T20Is.