A burly right-hander, Hamilton Masakadza was still at school when he became the youngest batsman ever to score a century on his Test debut, at 17 years and 254 days. That record was subsequently broken by Mohammad Ashraful, but 10 years and six days later he would set another one when he scored his second Test hundred: the fifth longest time between Test centuries, and the longest by a player whose career was not interrupted by a World War. Masakadza's game is based on patience and a sound defence, but he is solidly-built and can be a powerful hitter in the shorter forms of the game. Despite his early success, he chose to put his career on hold so that he could study at the University of the Free State. When the rebel player crisis hit Zimbabwe cricket he was recalled, and proved himself to be a sounder batsman than most of his young teammates. After finishing his studies he returned to Zimbabwe and in 2009 scored over 1000 runs in ODIs, with his 156 and 178 not out in the home series against Kenya making him the first batsman to make 150 or more twice in the same series. As captain of the Mountaineers he led them to the 50- and 20-over titles in 2009-10, but he suffered a slump in late 2010 which saw him miss out on World Cup selection the following year. He overcame that disappointment to become a key player in 2011, batting at the top of the order in all formats.