A landmark win for Bangladesh

Bangladesh has now completed 100 Tests. They marked the 100th Test with their 9th Test victory. Here are the 9 Test victories in chronological order:

BD wins

This can be summarized as:

Won 1-0 at home vs Zimbabwe in 2004-05

Won 2-0 away vs West Indies in 2009

Drew 1-1 away vs Zimbabwe in 2013

Won 3-0 at home vs Zimbabwe in 2014-15

Drew 1-1 at home vs England in 2016-17

Drew 1-1 away vs Sri Lanka in 2016-17

Today’s win was their first Test victory against Sri Lanka (and in Sri Lanka).

At this point we can review the performances of Bangladeshi players in these 9 Test victories.

Runs: 100 and above:

BD batt-overall

Tamim, Shakib and Mushfiqur played in 8 of the 9 wins. They only missed the one in 2004-05. Tamim scored 4 centuries and 2 fifties in these matches, as you can see in the table below.

Highest innings (90 and above):

BD batt-innings

Bowling (5 or more wickets):

BD bowl overall

Shakib far ahead of the others with Taijul as a surprise second, with newcomer Miraz rapidly moving up.

Best innings bowling (5wi and above):

BD bowl innings

The one-Test heroes Taijul and Enamul head the list. Otherwise there is mainly Shakib, but do not forget Mahmudullah’s fiver on debut as well as the emergence of MH Miraz.

Best match bowling (7 or more wickets):

BD bowl-match

Headed by Miraj and Shakib. Shakib scored a century in the same match.

Most fielding dismissals (5 and above):

BD field-overall

Headed by Mushfiqur who kept in all but the 2005 match. Khaled Mashud was the keeper then. Mahmudullah and Mominul have the most catches as non-keepers.

Innings fielding dismissals (3 or more):

BD field-innings

Mainly Mushfiqur, though Soumya Sarkar has the most (4) catches by a non-keeper.

Match fielding dismissals (4 or more):

BD field-match

As above, headed by Mushfiqur for keepers and Soumya for non-keepers.

All-round performance (minimum 250 runs and 5 wickets):

BD AR overall

Shakib followed by Mahmudullah (who was dropped for the current match).

All-round performance in match (fifty and five-for):

BD AR match

Includes M. Rafique, the only all-rounder in the early Tests and two efforts by Shakib. This includes the century and ten wickets at Khulna, which puts him on the same level as Botham and Imran.

You can also see this piece written at the time of the victory over England a few months ago:

https://abn397.wordpress.com/2016/10/31/bangladeshs-greatest-test-win/

Tests between Bangladesh and India: the records

The story of Tests between these countries is simply told. A total of 9 Tests have been played between these teams, all but one in Bangladesh.India won 6 of the 8 Tests in Bangladesh and the only one in India. Weather probably prevented a clean sweep.

In these 9 Tests, Dravid, Zaheer and Tendulkar played the most Tests-7.

We now proceed to Batting:

Most runs (200 and above):

bd-v-ind-runs

Tendulkar and Dravid have scored considerably more than others. Next comes Ashraful.

The most centuries are 5 by Tendulkar and 3 by Dravid. For 50+ scores, it is 5 by Tendulkar and 4 by Dravid and Ganguly. Tendulkar converted all his fifties to centuries.

Highest innings (90 and above):

bd-v-ind-innings

2 double centuries, including Tendulkar’s career-best 248*. 4 centuries were scored in the recent Test, including another 200 by V Kohli.

Highest batting average (minimum 10 innings batted):

bd-v-ind-batting-average

Only these 4 qualify. Interesting that Dravid is followed by 3 Bangladeshis. Also note that Ashraful has the highest strike rate of 69.67

Now for Bowling:

Most wickets (8 and above):

bd-v-ind-wkts

Zaheer Khan leads by a large margin, followed by Irfan Pathan’s 18-wicket haul in 2 Tests in 2004. Also note Mohammad Rafique’s contribution as their leading spinner in the early years.

Best innings bowling (all instances of 5wi):

bd-v-ind-innings-bowling

Zaheer and Pathan dominate again. Pathan has the most 5wis with 3, followed by Zaheer with 2.

Best match bowling (7 or more wickets):

bd-v-ind-match-bowling

The same pair again have the only 10wms. Next comes SB Joshi in the first Test between these teams.

Bowling averages (Minimum 1000 balls):

bd-v-ind-bowling-average

Only three qualify for this cutoff. Zaheer’s average is much better.

Now for Fielding:

Most fielding dismissals (5 or more):

bd-v-ind-fielding

Dhoni leads, as you expect, although he has played only 3 Tests in this series. He is closely followed by Kartik who kept in some Tests. Dravid has the most dismissals among non-keepers.

Most innings dismissals (4 and more):

bd-v-ind-innings-fielding

Most match dismissals (5 and more):

bd-v-ind-match-fielding

Here Dhoni is far ahead. Das and Ganguly have the most dismissals for non-keepers.

Dismissal rate (minimum 10 innings fielded, all instances):

bd-v-ind-fielding-average

Kartik has a large lead over Dravid, who has the highest dismissal rate among non-keepers.

All-round overall performance (see criteria below):

bd-v-ind-ar-overall

Though Shakib is considered as one of the leading all-rounders today, Zaheer Khan happened to bat well here and thus has a better difference.

And finally, there is the best all-round performance (50 and 5wi in the same match):

bd-v-ind-ar-match

Only one entry here, by a lesser-known player in the first Test between these teams.

Score 500 and lose

From Journalism 101: “When a dog bites a man, it is not news.

When a man bites a dog, it is news”

Similarly: When Bangladesh loses a Test, it is not news.

When Bangladesh scores almost 600 and loses a Test, it is news.

Here is a list of instances where a side scored 500 or more and still lost a Test:

500-and-lose-a

It can be seen that Bangladesh now has the record score in a loss, surpassing the 586 by Australia well over a century ago.

All of these instances came in the first or second innings of the match, except for the 510 by India in 1967. That was in a follow-on, and the Test is remembered partly for Pataudi’s 64 and 148 and more for Boycott being dropped for excessively slow scoring on the way to his Test best of 246*: http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/63004.html

We also look at scores of 450 or more in the 3rd and 4th inning in losses:

500-and-lose-b

The highest 3rd-innings score in a loss is 510 as mentioned above. For the 4th innings it is 451 by NZ in 2001-02, which Pakistan just failed to cross earlier this season.

Taking another look at the scorecard of Bangladesh’s recent loss:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/new-zealand-v-bangladesh-2016-17/engine/match/1019985.html

We see that Bangladesh’s innings included 217 by Shakib, which is the highest Test individual score for Bangladesh. The only other double centuries are 206 by Tamim and 200 by Mushfiqur. Incidentally, Shakib is one of the few to score a double century and duck in the same Test (regardless of the result). The highest such score is 245 by Shoaib Malik vs England in 2015-16.

There are, however, many instances of double centuries being scored in innings of sides losing Tests:

200-and-lose

The record continues to be with RT Ponting with 242. Other greats including Lara, Graeme Pollock, Harvey  and Hayden also appear here.

All of these efforts came in the first or second innings except for Astle’s 222 which figured in New Zealand’s 451 mentioned above:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/63981.html

We also look at individual scores of 175 and above in the 3rd and 4th innings for losing teams:

175-and-lose

The highest such score in the 3rd innings is 199* by Andy Flower. Numerous other well-known players also appear here.

An afterthought-we look at combined scores in both innings by a batsman in a losing side:

match-total-in-lost-test

Although there are numerous instances of centuries in both innings of a lost Test, Lara is the only one to make a double century and a century. Andy Flower just missed it with his 142 and 199*. Also note Ponting’s 242 and 0.

 

 

 

Bangladesh’s greatest Test win

While Bangladesh has made good progress in limited-over cricket in recent years, the just-concluded Test at Mirpur is historic. To understand this clearly, we look at the the team’s 8 Test victories:

bangladesh-test-history

This is their first victory against a full-strength “regular” team, not a fellow minnow such as Zimbabwe-even if it was a 3-0 sweep as in 2014.

And we don’t count the two wins against a West Indies third XI which included many debutants who (apart from Kemar Roach) vanished without a trace. The stand-in captain Floyd Reifer witnessed clean-sweep losses in the Test as well as the ODI series. In the course of the series he talked about his team improving. A journalist asked him, “Have you been smoking something that sounds like your name?”

(Those familiar with American crime novels would know that “reefer” is one of the numerous synonyms for marijuana).

It should be remembered that Bangladesh came very close to winning their first Test back in 2003, but were thwarted by the last-wicket pair of Inzamam (138*) and debutant Yasir Ali (1*): http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/64045.html

Yasir Ali never played a Test again, but much was heard of another debutant Salman Butt in years to come.

 

Unbeaten scores of 50+ on debut

Predictably, England won the first Test at Chittagong. Less predictable was the narrow margin of victory. Had they won, this would have been Bangladesh’s first Test win against a major team. We should not count the two victories against the West Indies third XI in 2009.

Sabbir Rahman made an unbeaten fifty on his debut. We now look into all those who achieved this feat on their debut.

For convenience, we break these instances into three sections, depending on whether the debutant’s team won, lost or drew/tied the match. There are a total of 73 such instances (including two cases where the debutant scored unbeaten fifty-plus scores in each innings).

We start with instances of unbeaten 50+ when the debutant’s team won:

unb-50-debut-win

27 such instances, including the first-ever Test century and a double century (Rudolph). That is the highest unbeaten innings by a debutant, and DSBP Kuruppu (see below) is the only other batsman to score an unbeaten 200+.

SG Law and MN Nawaz were playing their only Tests. Van Zyl and Voges had contrasting careers after their debut.

We will later try to see which of them may have hit the winning runs.

Next, we consider instances of unbeaten 50+ when the debutant’s team lost:

unb-50-debut-loss

18 such instances, including two innings by GC Grant. He was also captaining the West Indies on his debut. Barrett and Javed Omar carried their bats through the innings. Some famous names of the recent past are topped off by Sabbir Rahman and his 64*. Southee added a five-for to his 77*, thus becoming one of the handful of debutants to score a 50+ and 5wi.

We will later identify those who were left stranded at the end of the fourth innings.

Finally, we consider instances of unbeaten 50+ when the debutant’s team drew or tied:

unb-50-debut-draw-tie

28 instances, including two innings by Azhar Mahmood. He is the only one to scoore an unbeaten hundred and unbeaten fifty on debut. Rowe is here as well, having scored 214 along with the 100* mentioned here. And Kuruppu has an unbeaten double century. Again, a few famous names from the recent past who are still going strong.

Coming back to our original query, we isolate those who scored their unbeaten fifty-plus in the 4th innings, and were thus batting at the time of victory:

unb-50-debut-win-4th

Only 8 such instances, including Gavaskar besides Gimblett, Lloyd and Lewis against India. In some cases they may have hit the winning runs. This could be checked from the ball-by-ball commentary if available, or from contemporary match reports.

Finally, we look at those who were left unbeaten with 50+ in the 4th innings when their team lost:

unb-50-debut-loss-4th

Naturally, Sabbir Rahman tops off this list. India was not involved in any of these instances.

There might have been cases of remaining unbeaten on 50+ in the 3rd innings when their team lost by an innings. The possible candidates are:

Barrett, Ranjitsinhji, Grant, Howarth, Javed Omar and Henriques.

A look at the scorecard shows only Howarth and Javed Omar being left unbeaten in the third innings, when their team lost by an innings. Howarth was at the other end when fellow debutant No 11 Ewan Chatfield suffered a potentially fatal injury when struck by a ball from Peter Lever.

They only saw defeats in Tests-updated

After covering those Test players who only saw victories in their careers of over 5 Tests, we move to the other extreme of those who only saw defeats. There are 16 such players who are listed below as on May 15, 2016. The record is held by Alok Kapali of Bangladesh.

Allloss1

As you may guess, Bangladesh has the most representatives here but there are some from other major cricketing countries (but not India). An interesting case is that of JG Dewes who scored 1 and 10 on his debut which was a heavy loss for England. But this match is remembered more for a duck by another player in his last Test:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62689.html

Coming back to Alok Kapali and runner-up Mohammad Sharif, they were unlucky to miss Bangladesh’s first Test victory against Zimbabwe in 2004-05. The former was a batting all-rounder who was the first Bangladeshi (and only Hindu, if that matters) to take a Test hat-trick. That hat-trick (with innings figures of 3 for 3) accounted for half of his Test wickets. http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/player/56251.html

The only one who may play Tests again is RW Chakabva.

If we list all those who witnessed defeat in more than 90 percent of their Tests, we get this list of 22:

Allloss2

The 6 players added are all from Bangladesh. It looks as if Kapali’s record will stand for a long time, even though he was probably a better player than most of his teammates (or even players from other countries) who appear in these lists. Contrast this with Eldine Baptiste and his friends from the earlier post.