On 23rd January 2006, MS Dhoni registered his first century in Test matches, scoring 148 off 153 balls against Pakistan in the second Test of the series at Faisalabad.
Pakistan had scored a massive 588 in the first innings, with Shahid Afridi and Inzamam-ul-Haq getting centuries. India started their innings well, with Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman combining to add 197 runs for the second wicket. The home side got right back into the game, with the wickets of Dravid, Laxman, Sachin Tendulkar and Yuvraj Singh falling within a short spell of time. In walked the new wicketkeeper, whom many were excited about. Having already made an impact in the limited overs format, expectations were high from the 24 year-old.
Playing just in his fifth match, MS Dhoni made full use of the favourable conditions on offer on Day 3. He took on Shoaib Akhtar from the very first over. A short delivery was cut away fine of third-man to get him off the mark. The next over, the fast bowler was smashed for a six, as Dhoni pulled a short delivery over midwicket. Those two shots set the tone for the rest of the innings.
Dhoni and Irfan Pathan added 210 runs for the sixth wicket, getting India’s score close to 500. While the all-rounder was dismissed for a well made 90, the 24 year-old went on to score his first century in Test matches, coming off just 93 balls. He went on to add 48 runs more to his score before he was stumped trying to smash the ball over Danish Kaneria’s head. He finished on 148, the same number of runs he had scored for his first ODI hundred, with 19 boundaries and four maximums.
India were finally bowled out for 603, taking a 15-run lead. Eventually, the match ended in a draw as Mohammad Yousuf and Younis Khan hit centuries in the second innings and played out the majority of the final day.