The honors board at Lord’s are well known-anyone who scores a century or takes a fiver or a tenner gets his name on them, even if it is a neutral Test not involving England. If you need to brush up, see
and for Indian players featured there, full details are here:
However, note this extract from the Wikipedia article:
“A number of very distinguished players such as Sachin Tendulkar, Ricky Ponting, Shane Warne, Curtly Ambrose and Brian Lara are not named on the honours boards.”
It may be recalled that there was much heartbreak when Sachin failed to score a century in 2011, which was generally understood then to be his last Test there.
We now look at the aspect of prominent players failing to reach a board-worthy performance at Lord’s despite several opportunities. And there are some visitors who simply did not get to play enough at Lord’s.
Many English players whose career lasted about 5 years would have played 10+ Tests at Lord’s. Visiting players with long careers usually manage 4 Tests, unless they miss one Test or series. So we begin by identifying those who batted in at least 8 innings there. A further stipulation is that their batting position is 1 to 8, to eliminate tailenders without much batting ability.
So we have this for Most innings/matches at Lord’s without a century:
Atherton, Thorpe and Gatting played the most innings there without a century-particularly odd as Gatting played for Middlesex. Atherton did score 99 there and has the most fifties (7).
Visitors are led by Gavaskar and Tendulkar, followed by Azhar Ali, Faulkner, AW Nourse, Ponting and R Taylor. Lara played in only 3 Tests and 6 innings. The highest averages here are by Dexter (51.62) and FS Jackson (47.71).
Apart from Atherton’s 99, there are 90s by TE Bailey, JM Parks and FS Jackson.
Most innings/matches at Lord’s without a fifty:
While most of the batsmen here scored at least one fifty, some did not. They include Ramprakash (HS 40 in 13 innings), bowling all-rounder Emburey, Brearley, wicketkeeper Downton, Tendulkar, Faulkner and Ponting. The lowest average here is 10.38 by Ramprakash who was a specialist batsman, unlike some of the others. Then comes all-rounder Pringle (16.11) and another famous batsman Ponting (16.87). Tendulkar at least got into the 20s.
Next, we take up bowlers who bowled at least 1000 balls (while bowling at no 1 to 5) and never took a five-for:
Hoggard has the most Tests (11) and innings (20) here with a best of 4-27. However Edmonds has the best bowling figures of 4-6 followed by Laker with 4-13, while Hoggard has the most wickets (37).
Lillee (17 wkts), Kumble and Gibbs are the only visitors here.
Ambrose and Warne did not bowl enough balls here.
The best bowling average here is Laker’s 24.43, followed by Wardle’s 26.78.
And one gets similar results if we look for those who made the same effort and never took a ten-for:
Here, Anderson has the most wickets (110) with a best of 9-43. He may, of course, play a few more Tests at Lord’s. He also has the most 5-fors (7). CM Old has 9-88. Oddly enough Anderson has more than twice the wickets of the next bowler Willis with 47. Bedi, Kapil and Kumble represent India. The best bowling average is by Willis with 18.76 followed by Illingworth with 19.85.
Sir Richard Hadlee has the most wickets by a visitor (26).
For a short time between the second and third Tests in the current series, KL Rahul shared an obscure Test record with Ravi Bopara-they were the only batsmen to make 3 Test centuries with no fifty (i.e. no score between 50 and 99). As Rahul got out on 50, the record now goes back to Bopara. More details in my earlier post: https://wordpress.com/post/abn397.wordpress.com/2052
As we see, there are numerous players who scored one century and no fifty (including Agarkar and Ratra from India in recent years). A small number made two centuries and no fifties.
No one has scored 4 or more centuries with no fifties. The least number of fifties for the 4-century men is 3, shared by several including Shikhar Dhawan, Kambli and current players Dean Elgar and Usman Khawaja:
There is another statistical quirk which shows up whenever someone makes 163 or more runs on his debut (including both innings). The long-term record for the most runs in an one-Test career belongs to RE Redmond who made 107 + 56 = 163 in early 1973. Since then, over 20 players had scored over 163 runs on their debut and this held the record for the most runs in an one-test career (but only until they played their second Test). Another Kiwi JD Neesham was the last to hold this record, making 33 and 137* (170) on his debut against India in early 2014. But he soon played more Tests. Before that there was Rohit Sharma with 177 and Shikhar Dhawan with 187. Here is a list of the temporary record-holders who equalled or bettered Redmond’s record since 1973:
A few of these players, notably those from Pakistan, vanished from the scene almost as quickly as the hapless Rodney Redmond did. At least he had the satisfaction of seeing his son Aaron play 8 Tests, with two fifties and a top score of 81.
As many as 34 names here. But it includes some whose Test careers are not over, essentially everyone from Mushfiqur Rahim downwards excluding McCullum and now Misbah. So we remove Mushfiqur, Kohli, Mathews, AN Cook and SPD Smith.
So we are left with 29 who scored a fifty in their last Test when they were captaining. In some cases their retirement was known in advance, in other cases they may not have known they were playing their last Test.
McCullum has scored the most runs in the match (170) among these, though a few others have crossed 100 without making a century. The WI player RK Nunes is the only one to score two fifties in this category.
We may as well see the list of all those who scored centuries in the last Test of their career, regardless of captaincy:
Here we have a total of 42. We remove current players who are likely to keep playing for a while: Hafeez, Rahane, SE Marsh, Amla, SC Cook, de Kock, Burns and SPD Smith. This leaves 34 who scored centuries in their last Test (unless McCullum makes a comeback). In contrast, 100 players scored 102 centuries on debut (Remember Rowe and Yaseer Hameed).
Naturally our old friends AG Ganteaume and RE Redmond are there, as their first and last Tests were the same. Others who scored centuries on debut and last Tests are Duff (104 & 146), Ponsford (110 & 266), Greg Chappell (108 & 182) and Azharuddin (110 & 102). In case SE Marsh does not play another Test he will also join this club with 141 & 182.
Centuries in their last Test include those by Sandham (325, the first Test triple century) and double centuries by Ponsford, Nurse, Aravinda de Silva (last f-c match) and (strangest of all) night-watchman Gillespie making his only Test century.
CAG Russell is the only one to score centuries in both innings of his last Test. He was the first English player to score centuries in both innings of a Test.