Friday, June 30, 2006

Test Records - Week Ending 25th June 2006

Test #1807 India in West Indies 2006 (3rdTest) at Warner Park, Basseterre, St Kitts

By drawing the 3rd test against West Indies, Indian team might come back home without a series win in Caribbean islands for the 6th time in a row, if they do not mange to win the fourth and final test at Kingston, Jamaica. It’s been 35 years since India won a test series in West Indies. Last time when they won an young lad named Sunil Gavaskar made his debut in a grand style by compiling 774 runs in just 4 tests he played in that Series. Since then he retired from Cricket after compiling highest number of centuries and runs in tests not only for India but also by any cricketer. Of course those tallies since then were overtaken by Tendulkar who made his debut two years later Gavaskar retired from international cricket, but no test series victory yet for India though they visited the Caribbean islands six times including the current tour. The current Indian team can at least become the second team ever from India to come back without losing a test series if they do not lose the last test. Every Indian team that visited West Indies, except the 1970/71 Wadekar lead victorious Indian team who won the 5-Test rubber with a 1-0 margin came back home with a test series loss.

Here are some of the Statistical highlights and records that were achieved in this test:

Ramanaresh Sarwan with his 6 boundaries in Munaf Patel’s over became only 14th player in cricket history to have scored 24 or more runs in an over n test cricket.

** L denotes leg byes, N for No ball and LN for leg bye of a no ball.

  • Botham’s 6th ball to Roberts was hit for one leg bye.
  • Sutcliffe and Blair (25), and Morrison (24) scored their runs in an 8-ball over
  • Caddick's 4th ball of the over was a no-ball from which a leg-bye was taken ( 2 extras)
  • Willis’ 3rd ball of the over was a no-ball of which a boundary scored off, no extra run added as per the cricket laws at that time.
  • Munaf Patel’s 6th ball was a no ball of which a boundary was scored and an additional extra run added as per the prevailing cricket laws.

During his 1st innings knock of 87 MN Samuels completed 1000 runs in test cricket to become 423rd cricketer and 45th West Indian to achieve the milestone. Chris Gayle while scoring his 1st innings 83 and Sewhag in his 2nd innings score of 60 became the 95th and 96th cricketers to have completed 4000 runs in test cricket. Chris Gayle is 15th West Indian and Virendra Sewhag is 11th Indian to do so.

At the end of the test their test records read as:

Finally a trivia fact: Playing in his 97th test Shivnarine Chanderpaul was left stranded on 97 while his team was all out. This provides 46th instance in test cricket that a batsman was left unbeaten in nineties in a completed innings. Allan Border & Steve Waugh of Australia and Ridley Jacobs & Shivnarine Chanderpaul of West Indies are the only batsmen to have suffered this fate more than once. Ridley Jacobs with 3 scores of unbeaten ninties in a completed test innings holds the record.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Test Records - Week Ending 18th June 2006

Test #1806 India in West Indies 2006 (2ndTest) at Beausejour Stadium, Gros Islet, St Lucia

For second time in a row, India failed to wrest the initiative they had for bowling out the West Indies on the final day for a victory as the carribeans escaped from losing the test match again with another drawn encounter. If it were their tailenders in the 1st test who saved the match, this time their skipper Brian Lara with a majestic and responsible innings of 120 from 307 balls and a match saving partnership of 129 with Chanderpaul enabled West Indies to save the test after they were reeling at 51 for 3.

India started the proceedings with a 350+ score on the opening day of the test match when they ended the day with an healthy score of 361/4 ( check my earlier posting on this statistic).Sewhag almost became the 5th batsman in test history to have scored century before lunch and fell just one run short. Only four batsmen Bradman, McCartney, Trumper and Majid Khan achieved this distinction till now and is one of the most coveted record any opening batsman , especially an aggressive bat like Sewhag would like to have. Mohammed Kaif at last registered a test hundred.

Here are some of the test records that took place in this test , which happens to be only third ever test match played at this venue and not surprisingly all of them ended in draws on this batting paradise.

Pedro Collins, during his 1st innings haul of 4/116 became the 17th West Indian and 138th player to capture 100 or more wickets in a test career. He took 30 tests to complete this milestone. At the end of this test match his bowling figures read as

During India’s innings 3 batsmen Virendra Sewhag, Rahul Dravid and Mohammed Kaif have all hit centuries and took their scores into 140s. This provides only 4th such instance in 130 years history of test cricket of 3 players of one side scoring 140 or more runs in the same innings .

Captains of both the teams in this test have scored a century providing only 34th such instance. Following is the list of all such instances

On the 3rd day of the test match Chris Gayle’s was the first wicket to fall for 46 caught behind by Dhoni of the bowling of Kumble. When West Indies was asked to follow on , he was the last batsman out for the day, again caught by Dhoni of Pahtan for 2 thus providing a rare occurence of same player getting out both first and last on the same day of a test match.

Same batsman getting out twice on the same day did happen several times, in fact 454 times including Chirs Gayle’s instance, but same batsman becoming both the first and last wicket to fall in a day’s play is very rare in test cricket as shown in the list below. Same bowler took the wicket of the same batsman thrice ( Imtiaz Ahmed by Roy Gilchrist, Devon Malcom by Merv Hughes and Alec Stewart by Geoff Allot), but getting out caught by the same player either fielder or wicket keeper never happened before till Mahendra Singh Dhoni caught Chris Gayle both times off the bowling of Anil Kumble in the 1st innings and Irfan Pathan in the 2nd.

Finally a trivia fact : Virendra Sewhag's score of 180 is his seventh score of 150 or more in a row when he hit a century. His last seven century scores were 309, 173, 155, 164, 201, 254 & 180.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006


Rex Sellers of Australia played his only test in the country of his birth, India. Playing against India at Calcutta in the 3rd test of the 1964/65 series, he did not make a single run in the only innings he batted and was clean bowled by RF Surti for a duck. He could not pickup a wicket either, in the 5 overs he bowled conceding 17 runs. His only contribution in this test for Australia was a catch he held to dismiss RF Surti of the bowling of Bob Simpson.

Farooq Hamid of Pakistan, considered as one of the fastest and wildest bowler with not much control with his temperament made his debut at Melbourne in the only test played against Australia during the 1964/65 series. He took just one wicket that of another fellow debutante, Ian Chappell in Australia’s 1st innings, getting him caught by his skipper Hanif Mohammed. While bowling 19 overs in the 1st innings and another 4 in the 2nd, he conceded 82 & 25 runs. He did not make any impact with the bat either, making just 0 & 3 coming at the last in Pakistan’s innings.

Glen Gordon Hall of South Africa became the next OTW when he played against England at Cape Town in the 3rd test of the 1964/65 Series. Glen Hall, though made a by taking 9 wickets for 122 runs in the first innings he bowled in first class cricket, did not live up to the promise and clean bowled Peter Parfitt to claim his only test wicket to record a final bowling analysis of 31-7-94-1. He was clean bowled for a duck by Ken Barrington, who in contrast to Hall has registered his career best innings analysis of an unbelievable 3.1-1-4-3. Hall committed suicide on June 26th, 1987 at an age of 49 years.

In the 3rd test of the 1964/65 series between New Zealand and Pakistan, played at Christchurch, two cricketers Pakistan’s Mufasir-ul-Haq and New Zealand’s Peter Truscott made their single test appearances. Mufasir made 8* in the only innings he batted and took 2/50 and 1/34 while opening the bowling in both the innings. Truscott made 3 & 26 while opening the batting for New Zealand and did not get a chance to bowl.

In the 5th and final test match between England and South Africa, played at Port Elizabeth, which started on the same day, on 12th February, as the one in which Truscott and Mufasir made their debut, two other players, MJ Macaulay of South Africa and Ken Palmer of England made their test debut and never played in tests again. Macaulay made 21 & 12 and had bowling figures of 1/63 and 1/10. Ken Palmer, who later became an umpire of very high repute and officiated in 22 Tests and 23 ODIs, made 10 while coming to bat no.11 position. He also bowled in both the innings returning with figures of 1/113 and 0/76. None of them could get a chance to hold a catch.

Peter Allan of Australia, who became the first bowler to take all 10 wickets in an innings of any first class match at Melbourne by taking 10 for 61 for Queensland against Victoria, got a chance to represent Australia in tests in the same season in the 1st Ashes Test. Making his test debut along with Doug Walters, one of the greatest cricketers that Australia has ever produced, Allan took 2/58 and 0/25 and did not get a chance to bat as Australia declared their innings closed at 443/6 decl, which included a brilliant century from fellow debutant Doug Walters. Walters though brought into the side primarily as a batsman, had better bowling figures (1/25 & 1/22) than Allan. Walters went on to play 74 tests, whereas Allan with his single test appearance got into the record books as another OTW.

Ramesh Saxena, who announced his arrival in first class cricket with a splendid century on his Ranji Trophy debut, could not take it to the next level and became an OTW with his lone test appearance at Leeds in the 1st test of the 1967 series against England. Saxena opened the batting in the 1st innings and made just 9 runs and was demoted in batting order in the 2nd innings when India followed on. Coming into bat at 362/5 Saxena could not avail the opportunity and was clean bowled by John Snow for 16. Saxena also bowled 2 wicketless overs for 11 runs and was dropped from the test squad for the next test and never played in tests again. The only solace he might have had at that time was, even Geoffrey Boycott after making 246* in this test match was dropped from the 2nd test for his slow scoring.

In the same English season Pakistan’s Ghulam Abbas made his only test appearance in the 3rd test played at The Oval. He made 12 & 0 and did not get a chance to play in tests again.
Fourth test of the Australia Vs India series, played at Sydney has witnessed Les Joslin of Australia making 7 & 2 in his lone test appearance. Ajit Pai of India while making his test debut along with Chetan Chauhan and Ashok Mankad in the 1st test of the 1969/70 series against New Zealand at Bombay’s Brabourne Stadium bowled well and returned with figures of 2/29 and 0/2. Though Pai did well on his test debut, he was surprisingly dropped from the next test match and was never considered for a test position again.

Graeme Chevalier of South Africa has to blame his country’s apartheid policy more than anything else for becoming a member of OTW club. He made his test debut at relatively an older age of 33 years against Australia in the 1st test of the 1969/70 series at Cape Town and bowled well to return with respectable bowling figures of 2 for 32 & 3 for 68. He clean bowled the last batsman Alan Connolly in the 2nd innings to enable South Africa record a 170 run victory. He also caught Ian Chappell of Peter Pollock’s bowling in Australia’s 1st innings. In spite of his excellent debut, he was dropped from the side in favor much younger John Traicos and did not get a chance to play in that series again. It was the last test series that South Africa played before they were banned from playing test cricket for more than two decades.

Making his debut along with Kerry O’Keeffe, JRF ‘ Ross’ Duncan made his lone test appearance in the 5th test of the 1970-71 Ashes at Melbourne. He made 3 runs in the only innings he batted and failed to take a wicket in the only innings he bowled. Though he later appeared in unofficial tests between Australia Vs Rest of the World Series in 1971-72 season, he never played Test Cricket again. In the final test of the same series Australia’s Ken Eastwood made his only appearance in test cricket by opening the batting for Australia and getting out cheaply both times (5 & 0). He took the wicket of Keith Fletcher in England’s 1st innings getting him caught by his opening partner Keith Stackpole for 20.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Test Records - Week Ending 4th June 2006

Test #1804 Sri Lanka in England 2006 (3rd Test) at Trent Bridge, Nottingham

Everything else that happened in this test match was overshadowed by that magical 2nd innings bowling spell by Muralitharan which secured Sri Lanka's 2nd test victory in England and helped Sri Lanka level the test series 1-1. Muralitharan took first 7 wickets to fall in England's 2nd innings and was well on his way to become only 3rd bowler in cricket history to claim 10 wickets in an innings of a test till Kapugedera ran out Hoggard.

Muralitharan with his final figures of 8 for 70 in the innings and 11 for 132 in the test became only the 2nd bowler in test history to have claimed 10 wickets in two consecutive tests on two separate occassions. If we consider his record breaking streak of 4 tests with 10 wicket hauls which he achieved earlier as two separate occassions. He surpasses Sydney Francis Barnes as the only bowler to have claimed 10 wickets in a match in two consecutive tests on 3 separate occassions.

His 8 for 70 is 100th time that he took 5 or more wickets in an innings in first class cricket.

Jon Lewis of England while making his test debut (634the player from England) took a Michael Vandort's wicket with the 3rd legitimate delivery he bowled (his first ball in test cricket was no ball) and joined another 92 cricketers who have all taken a wicket in the first over they have bowled in test cricket.

England's captain Andrew Flintoff dismissed Mahila Jayawardane , the Sri Lankan skipper, in both the innings of this test. This provides 12th instance of a captain dismissing the opposing side's captain in both the innings of a test match. Flintoff and Jayawardane also provides 13th instance of a captain scoring a duck in the same test

A piece of trivia : Do you know who topped the batting averages for both the teams in this series. Its Chaminda Vaas at 92.00

Test #1805 India in West Indies 2006 (1st Test) at Antigua Recreation Ground, St John's, Antigua

India's failure to take the one wicket they needed for victory in the 19 deliveries that they were left with to bowl one of the tailenders provides only 15th such instance of a test match ending in a draw after a side battled it out with the 10th wicket pair at the crease. This Antigua match provides only 5th occassion of no.10 and no.11 denying a victory for the opponents.

Ramaresh Sarwan completed 4000 runs in test cricket when he reached 50 during his first innings knock of 58. He thus becomes the 14th West Indian and 94th cricketer to have aggregated 4000 runs in a test career.

Wasim Jaffer while hitting a double century became only the 16th Indian and 151st cricketer to have recorded a double hundred in test cricket. His double century in this test also provides only 30th occassion of a batsman hitting a double century in a test match when no other batsman could hit even a century.

VR Singh became the 256th Indian and 2479th cricketer to have made a test appearance.

Here is an interesting fact: Do you know who has the best batting average in tests among the current team members of India. Sreesanth at 59.00

Friday, June 02, 2006

Test Records - Week Ending 28th May 2006

Test #1803 Sri Lanka in England 2006 (2nd Test) at Edgbaston, Birmingham

A breathtaking century by Kevin Pietersen ,and a superb bowling display by Muralitharan were the highlights of the 2nd test between Sri Lanka and England, which ended in a 6-wicket victory for the home team.

Pietersen's 142 of just 157 balls, his 4 th century in 13 tests, took him into the elite league of cricketers who have scored 1000 or more runs with a test batting average of 50+. At the end of the test Pietersen's Test Career record reads as 13 Tests, 25 Innings, 1203 runs @50.12. He is jut one of the 32 players to have such an average after aggregating 1000 or more runs.

Sri Lanka's Michael Vandort too hit a century , but in a totally contrasting style from Pieteresen to save an innings defeat. He was the last batsman out in Sri Lanka's 2nd innings and very narrowly missed achieving the distinction of carrying his bat throughout innings. Vandort , at the end of this test has scored 455 runs in 5 tests at an average of 65.00 with the help of two centuries.

Geraint Jones, who completed 100 dismissals as a wicket keeper in the previous test added 5 more catches to complete 100 catches. By the end of the test he took his dismissals tally to 103 catches and 4 stumpings.

Muralitharan with an outstanding bowling display took 6/86 and 4/29 to aggregate 10 wickets in a match for the 15th time in his career. He now has 624 wickets in 105 tests at average of 22.28 and have 52 five wkt hauls in an innings and 15 ten wkt hauls in a match.