Quinton de Kock has burst into the consciousness of cricket fans around the world after scoring three centuries in three consecutive ODIs for South Africa against India.
De Kock, still a week away from turning 21, crunched 135 from 121 balls to open the series. He followed it up with 106 in the second ODI, and passed three figures once again in the final encounter.
He was bowled by Ishant Sharma for 101 trying to push the run rate along for the Proteas, but it meant that his series stats stood at 342 runs from 359 balls.
|Quinton de Kock vs. India, 2013 ODI Series|
|1st ODI||5 December||135||121|
|2nd ODI||8 December||106||118|
|3rd ODI||11 December||101||120|
The left-hander has been tipped for greatness for some time, but the trio of innings has catapulted him into the limelight in style. Coming against the current world champions, who are also the top ODI side around, he could certainly not be accused of having done things the easy way.
He joins an exclusive list of just five people to reel off three centuries in as many ODIs. One of them, AB de Villiers, was both de Kock's captain and his batting partner when he reached the landmark.
The others on the list are:
|3 Centuries in 3 Straight ODI Matches|
|Zaheer Abbas||118, 105, 113||Pakistan||India||1982/3|
|Saeed Anwar||107, 131, 111||Pakistan||Sri Lanka, West Indies||1993|
|Herschelle Gibbs||116, 116*, 153||South Africa||Kenya, India, Bangladesh||2002|
|AB de Villiers||114*, 102*, 102||South Africa||India, West Indies||2010|
|Quinton de Kock||135, 106, 101||South Africa||India||2013|
Remarkably, de Kock is not in South Africa's Test plans at present—although that perhaps says more about the strength of South Africa's batting in that format of the game than any lack of ability on de Kock's part.
In any case, there will certainly be opportunities ahead for de Kock, in the Test arena and beyond.
Scoring runs against India is a fine way to get yourself noticed by IPL teams. Although he did have a stint in the IPL in 2013 at Sunrisers Hyderabad, he was on just a $20,000 contract and was understudy to Kumar Sangakkara. Expect the offers to be considerably more substantial next time around.