Warner’s triple century and others

First, a list of all Test scores of 300 and above;

Triple centuries-1

David Warner’s 335* was the 31st instance of 300+ in a Test, and the first at Adelaide. Incidentally the previous highest was 299* by DG Bradman vs SA in 1931-32.

It is also the highest in any day-night Test, surpassing¬† Azhar Ali’s 302* at Dubai in 2016-17.

Highest in day-night Test

However, it is the second highest score by an Australian player and in Australia, where ML Hayden’s 380 is in first place.

Coming back to the list of 300+ scores above, 27 players have made 31 such scores.

Lara, Gayle, Sehwag and Bradman have 2 such scores each. Bradman and Sehwag came close to getting a third, getting up to 299* and 293 respectively.

It is instructive to see the list of 300+ scores in chronological order.

Triple century-2

The first such score was by Andrew Sandham in 1929-30. He remains relatively unknown now:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/england/content/player/20058.html

Prior to this tour of the West Indies, he had played in 10 Tests without a century, He made 152 in the first Test, and rounded this up with 325 and 50 in what was to be his last Test. England made 849 and later set WI over 800 to win. As in the better-known timeless Test at Durban a decade later, the match was called off as England had to catch their ship home.

https://www.espncricinfo.com/series/17590/scorecard/62579/west-indies-vs-england-4th-test-england-tour-of-west-indies-1929-30

This record of 325 only lasted for a little over 7 months, as Bradman made 334 at Leeds during the 1930 tour. (His only other triple (304) also came at Leeds in 1934).

Another of Sandham’s records was more durable; his 375 in the match was not surpassed until Greg Chappell made 380 (247* and 133) in 1973-74.

In England’s customary add-on series with New Zealand after the bodyline series of 1932-33, Hammond made 336*. The captain (RES Wyatt) appears to have declared once he crossed Bradman’s record of 334. Even so, there was not enough time to win the Test.

So the record was back with England. Bradman got up to 304 at Leeds in 1934.

At the Oval in 1938, Hutton made sure it remained with England with 364. England’s total of 903/7 dec was the record until the Sri Lankans made 952/6 in 1997.

https://www.espncricinfo.com/series/17544/scorecard/62652/england-vs-australia-5th-test-australia-tour-of-england-1938

A famous picture from that Test:

Bossers Pet

That record of 364 lasted a little less than 20 years, when a relatively unknown all-rounder named Garfield Sobers marked his first Test century with 365*. There was, expectedly, a crowd disturbance when he passed the old mark. But the captain Gerry Alexander declared after this, correctly guessing that there was enough time to bowl out Pakistan twice.

A more detailed account of this innings can be seen here:

https://abn397.wordpress.com/2015/05/05/make-mine-a-double-no-a-triple/

This record stood for just over 36 years, when another West Indian batsman Brian Lara made 375 at St John’s in 1994. An account of this innings:

https://www.espncricinfo.com/story/_/id/21525184/brian-lara-375-world-record-nearly

The West Indies won the series 3-1 with this final Test drawn.

In the second half of the 1990s, there were two determined efforts, with Sri Lanka’s Jayasuriya making 340 in what is still a Test record total of 952/6, and the puzzling score of 334* by Australian captain Mark Taylor who declared at this point. The official story then was that he did not want to go past Bradman’s Australian record. Both these Tests ended in dull draws.

By late 2003, Matthew Hayden got a chance against Zimbabwe. Admittedly its bowling was somewhat better than what it was later, but he did not stop at crossing 375 and made 380 at Perth, still a record for Australia and in Australia. Steve Waugh declared as soon as Hayden was out at 735/6.

https://www.espncricinfo.com/series/15140/scorecard/64048/australia-vs-zimbabwe-1st-test-zimbabwe-tour-of-australia-2003-04

Hayden’s record lasted only for 6 months, when Lara reclaimed it again at St. John’s:

https://www.espncricinfo.com/series/15068/scorecard/64080/west-indies-vs-england-4th-test-england-tour-of-west-indies-2003-04

As in 1994, this score was not enough for West Indies to win the Test even though England had to follow on. However, England had won the first 3 Tests and thus won the series 3-0. Lara’s 400* was therefore relatively unimportant to the result.

Since then, the closest anyone got was 374 by M Jayawardene in 2006. Warner might well have come close to the record except that rain was forecast for the remainder of the Test. It is yet unclear whether the captain TD Paine attached any special significance to 335 which was Warner’s score when the captain declared. There was enough time to dismiss Pakistan twice with over a day to spare.

 

 

 

Seymour Nurse’s odd record (Updated in Dec 2019)

Back to old-fashioned cricket.

Seymour Nurse passed away earlier this year: http://www.espncricinfo.com/westindies/content/player/52636.html

He was one of the reasonably strong members of the West Indies invincibles of the 1960s, playing 29 Tests between 1960 and 1969.

And he was one of the few to score a double century in his last Test, which was https://www.espncricinfo.com/series/17283/scorecard/63038/new-zealand-vs-west-indies-3rd-test-west-indies-tour-of-new-zealand-1968-69

These are the few who achieved this:

Century in last Test innings

As we can see, Warner, Sandham and Ponsford scored more than Nurse’s 258 in their final Tests.

Spare a thought for Sandham. He was the first to score a Test 300, and his match total of 375 was a record until 1974 when Greg Chappell overtook it. But an average cricket fan of today (or, indeed, from the 1940s onward) probably would not have heard of him unless they were deep into history.

http://www.espncricinfo.com/england/content/player/20058.html

Now we see that Sandham scored 325 and 50 in his last Test: https://www.espncricinfo.com/series/17590/scorecard/62579/west-indies-vs-england-4th-test-england-tour-of-west-indies-1929-30

And Ponsford likewise scored 266 and 22 in his last Test (with Bradman making 244 and 77): https://www.espncricinfo.com/series/17565/scorecard/62623/england-vs-australia-5th-test-australia-tour-of-england-1934

It was not often that Bradman made a double century but was outscored by a team-mate.

So we see that SM Nurse, who made 258 in his only innings in his last Test, holds the record for the highest last innings score in all Tests.

Others to score a double century in their last Test innings are:

Aravinda de Silva; 206 in his last first-class match.

JN Gillespie; 201* as a night-watchman batting at No 3 instead of his usual 9.

Warner and Root will be around for a while.

For India, the answer to this is VM Merchant, with 154 vs England in 1951-52. VS Hazare outscored him with 164*. Other Indians with a century in their last Test innings are VL Manjrekar (102* vs NZ in 1964-65) and M Azharuddin (102 vs SA in 1999-2000).

 

 

Review of West Indies-England Tests-1

The 3-Test series was won 2-1 by the West Indies, with all three matches ending in decisive results. West Indies won their first series against England since early 2009. They have not won a series in England since 1988, and did not win a Test in England between 2000 and 2017.

The overall results are:

Overall summary

The West Indies still enjoy an overall lead and at home, while England leads them in matches played in England.

We now come to individual performances:

Batting:

Most runs (1000 runs and more):

Batting-1000

A long list without much contribution from recent years. The only name from the past few years is AN Cook.

The most centuries are 10 by Sobers and 8 by Richards and Headley. The most from England is 6 by several players. The most scores of 50+ are 23 by Richards and Sobers, followed by 21 by Chanderpaul. The most by England is 20 by Boycott.

Highest innings scores (175 and above):

Innings-175

This list is led by Lara’s world records and is followed by Sandham’s score which was the first Test triple century. The only such score from this series is captain Holder’s 202*, while Cook scored 243 in the last series in 2017.

Highest batting averages (Minimum 20 innings and 35.00):

Batting avg-35

Yet again, Cook is the only representative in recent years with his 57.96. Hutton and Headley are far ahead of others, and they both played their last Test in this series in 1954.

Highest strike rate (Minimum 1000 balls faced, 50.00):

Batting SR-50

Here we have the recent player MJ Prior at the top, followed by Richards and Pietersen. Root is the only recent player here.

To be continued.