Shane Watson’s Test career

Although Shane Watson‘s Test career was not extraordinary, he fulfilled the role of a batting all-rounder for some years. His contribution to limited overs cricket was more striking, as he holds the record for Australia’s top score in ODIs (185*) and second highest in T20Is (124*).

Leaving out the Test against the ICC XI, he played 58 Tests, scoring 3697 runs and taking 75 wickets. If we compare his all-round performance in those of other Australians who had a minimum of 1000 runs and 50 wickets, it is above average but not outstanding (9th out of 22). The only other Australian of that time who might be called an all-rounder was Mitchell Johnson, who was a considerably better bowler but certainly a worse batsman.


However, Watson does have one claim to fame in that he is one of only 4 players to feature on the “neutral” honours board at Lord’s. More about the honours boards here:’s_honours_boards

Only two neutral Tests have been played here. One was between Australia and South Africa as part of the experimental triangular Test series of 2012:

Australia easily defeated South Africa by 10 wickets. In general it was felt that the triangular Test series was a bad idea and it was not repeated. The nearest revival it got was the interlocking tours of England and West Indies to Australia in 1979-80.

Then there was the Test between Australia and Pakistan in 2010:

The neutral honours boards thus have these entries:





(There is also a board for ten wickets in a match, which does not have any entries yet).

The actual board being “unveiled” with the new entries:


This Test marked the Test debuts of Steve Smith (1, 12 and 3-51) and Azhar Ali (16 and 42). Watson got the first of his three fivers  while North got his only one here. This match marked Shahid Afridi’s only Test as captain; after this he retired from Tests altogether.

In the second neutral Test at Leeds, Salman Butt’s ill-fated captaincy began with a 3-wicket victory over Australia.

Watson recorded his career-best 6-33 in this Test, while the two As (Asif and Amir) combined to bowl Australia out for 88.



Overall T20WC records as on March 23

As we pause for breath after the last over against Bangladesh, here is a snapshot of major records in all T20WC matches from 2007 to March 23.

Most matches (25 and more):

T20WC-most matches

Dilshan, Afridi and Dhoni look set to add a few more matches-though they probably will have retired by the next World Championship. Note that the previous record of 31 was shared by three Sri Lankans.

Most runs: (500 and more)

T20WC-most runs

M. Jayawardene’s record is under threat from Gayle and Dilshan.

Of those who scored more than 500 runs, Kohli has by far the highest average (67.33). The next is Gayle with 45.35

The highest strike rate here is 153.31 by Afridi, followed by 148.33 by Pietersen.

Most wickets (20 and more):

T20WC-most wickets

Afridi (39) has taken over the record from Malinga. Next among current players is Shakib with 30.

The record of 6-8 by Ajantha Mendis has not come under threat this time as no one has taken more than 4 wickets in an innings.

From those listed above, Mendis has the best average of 15.02, Vettori the best economy at 5.83 and Mendis the best strike rate of 13.4

Fielding (12 or more dismissals):

T20WC-most dismissals

De Villiers (31) has the most dismissals and is set to add to his record. Most of his catches were as a fielder. Dhoni (29) and Ramdin (26) have a chance of catching up.

Kamran Akmal has the most dismissals (30) among the “pure” keepers. Guptill and Warner with 15 lead among the pure non-keepers, although de Villiers has 22 catches as a fielder along with 7 catches as a keeper and 2 stumpings.


Best all-round performance (Minimum 100 runs and 10 wickets):


Using this criterion, Kallis ranks the highest, followed by Shakib and Mathews from the current players.

As we can see, a few of these records may be broken before the end of the 2016 World Championship.



Test captains-quantitative studies (2)

Continued from

Captains who won all their Tests:

All win

These are all the 16 who fall in this category. The record of 4 is jointly held by Bacher and Hawke whose own careers were nothing special. And 11 of them made the most of the one Test they got to captain, including big names like WA Brown, Shastri, Neil Harvey and Graveney. Mortaza was in fact injured for most of the match while Tamim officiated.

Captains who lost all their Tests:

All loss

A total of 33 captains lost all their Tests. The above list of 17 excludes those who captained in one Test.

As one may guess, the list is headed by two of the earlier captains of Bangladesh with 12 and 9 Tests, and it is followed by DK Gaekwad with 4. His son AD Gaekwad had a much better Test career, although he never got to captain India. A few well-known players here are Lamb, Prince, Arthur Morris and Emburey.

Captains who drew all their Tests:

All draw

This list of 19 is headed by Srikkanth (4), followed by Majid Khan and Saeed Ahmed with 3. A little odd, considering that the first two were known to be particularly aggressive batsmen. 15 of these captained in only one Test, including HR Adhikari who ended a sequence of three heavy defeats by the West Indies (and 3 Indian captains in 4 Tests).

Captains who never won a Test (for 5 or more Tests):

Never won

There are a total of 92 captains who never won a Test. The above table gives only the 20 who captained in 5 or more Tests. Big names include Saleem Malik, Botham, Asif Iqbal, Jeff Crowe, Vinoo Mankad, Aravinda de Silva, Wasim Bari and Venkataraghavan.The current West Indies captain JO Holder is also here. In some cases (notably Botham) their individual performances dipped sharply once they became captain. Others (such as Mankad) were stopgap captains towards the end of their careers.

Captains who never lost a Test: (for 3 or more Tests)

Never lost

A total of 48 captains feature here. The above table shows the 18 who captained in 3 or more Tests. Note that the current Australian captain Steve Smith just edged into the top spot with 11, breaking the old record of another Australian WW Armstrong. Our old friends Bacher, Hawke, Srikkanth, Majid and Saeed are duly mentioned.

And finally

Captains who never drew a Test: (for 5 or more Tests)

Never drew

A total of 75 captains are in this category. Here we have the 16 who captained in 5 or more Tests. It would naturally include those in the all-win and all-lose category, such as the two Khaleds of Bangladesh. Some, like Waqar Younis and Shrewsbury have a good win-loss ratio.



Test captains-quantitative studies (1)

It is T20 season, and the IPL juggernaut starts moving practically the day after the World Championship gets over and ends on May 29. In the mean time the break in Tests ends with the start of the England-Sri Lanka series in mid-May.

This gap makes it a good time to update some Test statistics, since we are now confident that they won’t need to be updated for a few weeks.

Here is a table of the wins, losses and draws of everyone who captained in at least 10 Tests:

Captaincy-all over 10 Tests

In this Excel sheet we have ranked the captains by

  1. Tests in decreasing order, then
  2. Wins in decreasing order, then
  3. Losses in increasing order, and then
  4. Draws in decreasing order.

There are also columns for percentages of wins, losses and draws as well as the win-loss ratio, for those who would like to play around further.

I am now giving a few more spreadsheets for some other indices of performance. Hereafter we are considering all Test captains, even if they have captained in only one Test.

Highest win-loss ratio:

Win-loss ratio

The first 50 positions are for those who have either zero wins or zero losses. The highest win-loss ratio is 9.0 for Jardine, followed by Bradman, Steve Waugh, Brearley and Chapman.

Highest win percentage:

Highest win percentage

There are as many as 16 captains who have an 100 percent win record-but none of them captained more than 4 Tests. This list is headed by the unlikely pair of Ali Bacher and Lord Hawke. Moving downwards, the highest for at least 5 Tests is Close (6 wins out of 7 or 85.71 %). For at least 10, it is Warwick Armstrong (8 on 10 or 80%) and for at least 50  it is Steve Waugh (41 on 57 or 71.93%)

To be continued.

The easternmost points of India

We start with this map (which appeared in the Economist some time ago ) to see the various disputed areas involving India, Pakistan and China.

Disputed areas

While the LOC in Kashmir is basically a result of Pakistan grabbing whatever it could in 1947-48, the borders with China are somewhat more complicated, involving treaties by various entities controlling Kashmir, the former NEFA and Tibet over the past two centuries.

There is even a small disputed area called Bara Hoti on the border between Uttarakhand and Tibet, but nothing much happens there. China claims most (but not all) of Arunachal Pradesh; the dark green part of the map is the undisputed part of that state. And Tawang was supposedly governed by Tibet until 1951 before India occupied it.

That bit about Arunachal is necessary to understand this extract from the Wikipedia article on “Extreme points of India”:

(disputed, administered)
Kibithu in Anjaw district Arunachal Pradesh Tibet, China 28.01744°N 97.40238°E [4][8]
East (undisputed) Near Kumki, in the Changlang district Arunachal Pradesh Kachin State, Myanmar 27.12622°N 97.16712°E [9]

Kibithu is in the disputed part of Arunachal while Kumki is in the smaller undisputed part.

You can click on the coordinates to get the location on Google Maps or other sites. The first one seems to be wrong as it shows a point in Myanmar. The second one shows a point in India near the border although no place name is given.

This map of Arunachal Pradesh may also be helpful:

Arunachal 2011

You can see Kibithu north of the better-known Walong in Anjaw district.

The place Kumki is not shown here, but would be east of Vijoyanagar (which, like Walong, has an Advanced Landing Ground which can handle medium transport aircraft such as the AN-32 and C-130J ).

As Wikipedia has got it wrong, let us explore Walong and its surroundings in Anjaw district on Google Maps:,97.0662292,11z?hl=en

We have

Walong listed as a cantonment and town, at longitude 97.0167 E

Dong   listed as the easternmost village in India, at longitude 97.04117 E

Kibithu listed as one of the easternmost towns in India and the easternmost             roadhead in India, at longitude 97.0156 E which is west of Walong and Dong.

Also note the tri-junction of India, China and Myanmar about 20 Km west of the Walong-Kibithu route, apparently without any inhabited place in between.

However, the curiously-named village of Dong would  be the easternmost civilian inhabited place in India-even though it consists of 3 huts. In spite of its remoteness it does attract a small number of tourists. Walong is reachable by road via Tezu (which was once served by Vayudoot flights, and now may have Pawan Hans helicopter services run by the state government). Otherwise one can start from Mohanbari airport or Tinsukia railway station.

As a formality, we also visit the “undisputed” easternmost point in the vicinity of Vijoyanagar in Changlang district:,96.9753302,11z?hl=en

There does not seem to be any civilian inhabited place between Vijoyanagar and the Myanmar border. This has a longitude of 96.9939 E which is west of Walong and its neighbours. Changlang district has numerous places of tourist interest (including the Miao sactuary) which can be reached from Mohanbari airport or Tinsukia railway station.

However, life in Vijoyanagar is hard, as you can read here:

That is based on an article written in 2009. Perhaps things have improved since then.

Fortunately the western and southern extreme points of India are not so remote, as we will see later.


The northernmost points of India

There are some countries like Britain whose extreme points are well documented. The little towns of Land’s End and John O’Groats are well-known tourist spots.

In many countries one or more borders and extreme points are in remote areas-particularly so in India’s northern and eastern borders. There is a difference between:

  1. What the Indian government says its borders are
  2. What area is actually controlled by the Indian government
  3. What area is disputed by other countries (though this is really of no concern to the Indian public, one has to see maps published from other countries which show a large area as disputed).

One can also look up the definitions of “de jure” and “de facto” if one wants to be further confused.

Anyway, this Wikipedia article claims to mention all the extreme points of India. For today we deal with the northernmost points, and we will return to the other points later.

We start with a typical map of Jammu and Kashmir from a school atlas:

If one was to take this seriously, the international borders shown here are the true borders of the India since Independence.

J and K 001

A point of interest is the thin sliver of Afghanistan (known as the Wakhan corridor) bordering India’s territory. Crossing this you enter Tajikstan, formerly part of the USSR.

But what is actually controlled by India? This map from Wikipedia sums it up:


Note the green area which has been controlled by Pakistan since shortly after independence, although minor changes have occurred in the 1965 and 1971 wars.

Then there is the Aksai Chin (in beige, like the rest of China and Tibet) which was taken over by China some time in the mid-1950s, without the Indian government or armed forces knowing about it. Also note that a portion of  south-eastern Ladakh is held by India and is marked as disputed.

The Siachen glacier (in white) was not permanently occupied by any government until the Indian armed forces occupied positions there in 1984.

Then there is the Shaksgam valley which is supposed to be in India, and was occupied by Pakistan and later transferred to China.

So you can see that the northern-most point actually occupied by India’s forces would be somewhere near the northern end of Siachen, on the border with Xinjiang province of China.

Now we look back to the Wikpedia article referenced earlier: If you click on the co-ordinates you will end up with a map showing the location. But it may take less time if you first open Google maps or Wikimapia etc and enter the coordinates yourself.

The borders will be shown differently if you are using  or, say, .


Heading Location Administrative entity Bordering entity Coordinates[nb 1] Ref
(disput-ed, govern–ed
Near Indira Col, Siachen Glacier Indian-administered Kashmir Xinjiang, China 35.674520°N 76.845245°E [3]
(disput–ed, claimed)
Dafdar in the Taghdumbash Pamir near Beyik Pass Xinjiang, China Wakhan Corridor, Badakhshan Province, Afghanistan 37°24′00″N 75°24′00″E [4]
(undis- -puted)
Near Dharwas, Chamba district Himachal Pradesh Indian-administered Kashmir 33.24902°N 76.82704°E [5]


The first point shows what may be the northernmost Indian military post at Indira Col in the Siachen, with latitude approximately 35.6745 N.

The second shows a place some distance along the Karakoram highway near Tashkargan, the first town in Xinjiang.

And the third shows the northernmost point of Himachal Pradesh (since the whole of J & K is disputed 🙂 )

This is all rather messy, so you may prefer the map referenced here:


which shows the location of Indira Col with reference to the Line of Control.

This article explains the significance of NJ 9842 and the line heading northeast from it:

Apart from the location above, there is a built-up area at Daulat Beg Oldi (DBO) airstrip: 

which is at 35.390 N . Note the comment:

“Other than Siachen Glacier military bases, it is India’s northernmost built-up area.” There is a nearby small town of Murgo, (35.0411 N) which is not yet connected by motorable road to Leh although some roads exist around DBO.

The northernmost town which can be visited by the Indian public is now Warshi:

Also see this map for the roads here:

Warshi’s latitude is 35.0629 N, while the previous northernmost accessible place was Turtuk with 34.8474 N. Turtuk was under Pakistan’s control until 1971.

Fortunately the extreme points in the west, east and south are not so confusing. We visit them next.

Footnote: here is another map of disputed territories, which seems to have appeared in “The Economist” at some point. We will meet it again when we come to the eastern extreme points.

Disputed areas


The extreme points of India

We hear the phrase “From Kashmir to Kanyakumari” or the next-door version “from Khyber to Karachi”. In Britain there is “From Land’s End to John O’Groats” which are supposed to be the extreme southwest and extreme northeast points of the British mainland. In contrast, the US gets by with “From sea to shining sea” in one of their patriotic songs.

Ever wondered about the extreme points of India? One may think that the question is answered in the Wikipedia article linked below. Actually it is not as simple as that as there are several different ways of deciding where India ends in the north. (Do you mean what the official atlas says, or the point actually under Indian military control? And since many countries think that Kashmir is a disputed territory, then what should be the “undisputed”northernmost point?)

Even the eastern border is disputed by China although it is firmly in Indian control. The western extreme is a point in the sea off the Gujarat-Sind border. And the southernmost point is not Kanyakumari on the mainland but a remote settlement on an island in the Nicobars, with a population of 27.

We shall be visiting these places over the next few blogposts. We also look at the nearest inhabited places (which are hard to find unless you are at Kanyakumari).

Read this first: