Making sense of the T20 qualifiers for the 2020 Championship

First, a quick look at the T20 World Championship which will take place in Australia in October-November 2020:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2020_ICC_T20_World_Cup

It is a 16-team championship. These 10 are already in:

1.Australia

2. Pakistan

3. India

4. England

5. South Africa

6. New Zealand

7. West Indies

8. Afghanistan

9. Bangladesh

10. Sri Lanka

9 and 10 still have to fight for a place in the Super 12, with the 6 qualifiers.

The T20 qualifying tournament is being held in the UAE from 18 Oct to 2 Nov 2019. 14 teams are in the fray. Zimbabwe was to be one of them. Despite their late reprieve, they have already been replaced by Nigeria for the qualifiers.

Warm-up matches in the UAE start from Oct 15.

The 14 teams contesting for 6 places in the tournament are:

1. Bermuda

2. Canada

3. Hong Kong

4. Ireland (including the Irish Republic and Northern Ireland)

5. Jersey (nominally part of the UK)

6. Kenya

7. Namibia

8. Netherlands

9. Nigeria

10. Oman

11. Papua New Guinea

12. Scotland (UK again).

13. Singapore

14. United Arab Emirates

Who will be the 6 qualifiers? Predicting a tournament like this was notoriously difficult in the past. We now have some basis in the form of the T20I ranking tables.

This was how it stood on Oct 10, 2019:

T20I Ranking Oct 10 2019

Remember to leave out Zimbabwe for the moment. The top 6 ranks among the qualifiers would be 1. Scotland 2. UAE 3. Ireland 4. Oman 5. PNG 6. Netherlands

(Next in the rankings are Namibia and Hong Kong, though their ranking points  seem to be somewhat less than that of the Netherlands and the other teams listed above). Nepal, despite its higher ranking, did not get through the earlier qualifying rounds.

These 6 will join Bangladesh and Sri Lanka for 4 places in the Super 12. While there may be stray upsets over these “senior” teams, I doubt very much if the qualifiers would replace them in the Super 12s. Thereafter it could be anyone’s game. But more predictable than the FIFA Cup.

Also see: https://www.espncricinfo.com/story/_/id/27858401/all-need-know-men-t20-world-cup-qualifier

for more details.

The Indian tail also wags

Data as of 14 Oct 2019:

Having seen how batsmen of no 8 and below have fared against India, we see how India’s tailend batsmen have done in Tests:

Innings of 90 and above by Indian batsmen at No 8 and below:

Indian tail innings

Dhoni and Ashwin are among the main contributors here. It is often forgotten that Saha has scored centuries (also two more while batting at 7 or higher).

There are relatively few newcomers here. RH Shodhan is the only debutant here, while Ratra, Ashwin and Pandya made their centuries at the start of their career. J Yadav soon dropped out of the Test reckoning. Kumble and Harbhajan made their centuries at a late stage of their careers.

It should be noted that Kapil usually batted at 7 or higher.

We now look at averages of those batting at 8 and below, subject to a minimum of 10 innings:

India tail averages

Dhoni expectedly has the highest average, while Saha is surprisingly second and Prabhakar third. Prabhakar also played many of his matches higher in the order.

Sandhu seems to have been better as a batsman than a bowler during his brief career. He still holds the record of the highest score by a debutant (71) at no 9.

Dhoni, Kapil, Ashwin and Harbhajan all have two centuries here. The most 50+ scores are by Kapil (15), Harbhajan (11) and Jadeja (10). Harbhajan did make rapid progress as a batsman since his debut.

Kumble has over 2000 runs here, while Kapil and several others have over a thousand. Saha, Ashwin and Jadeja are among the current players here.

Finally we look at centuries for the 8th to 10th wicket:

Indian tail partnerships

There are some large partnerships here, some of which were in a losing cause (such as the one between Azhar and Kumble). One which was significant was the 122 by Prasanna and Sardesai, which helped India to impose the follow-on on the West Indies and gain a psychological advantage which lasted till the end of the series.

The partnership between Tendulkar (248*) and Zaheer Khan (75) was then the record for the 10th wicket, until Root and Anderson overtook it against India. Both Tendulkar and Zaheer made their highest scores here. Another useful 10th-wicket partnership was the one between B Kumar and Shami, in which both scored fifties.

When the tail wagged against India

Indian bowlers have often been frustrated by lower-order batsmen. This happened in the first Test of this series as well as the first innings of the second Test.

Here we list all scores in Tests of 70 and above from No 8-11 (sorry, 12) against India:

Highest tailend scores against India

This includes several debut scores (including 137* by Neesham, 105 by BR Taylor, 103* by Samaraweera to begin with) as well as career-best scores of 173 by IDS Smith, 137* by Neesham, 107 by Christiani and numerous others such as MA Starc, MD Marshall, TT Bresnan and even Anderson and Muralitharan. The most recent entry is KA Maharaj with 72.

We also look at the averages (with a minimum of 10 innings) for those who batted at 8-12 against India:

Tail against India

Vettori, Broad and Starc have scored the most runs here. Starc, JO Holder and Broad have done well in recent years.

Finally, partnerships of 90+ from the 8th wicket onward against India:

Tail partnerships against India

Ironically the highest such partnership is for the last wicket, when Anderson scored his only Test fifty. From the current series we have Maharaj and Philander with 109 for the 9th, and Muthusamy and Piedt with 91 for the 8th.

 

 

Test scores of 200+ by Indians and others

Information correct as on Oct 11, 2019.

First we look at those who have made 5 or more scores of 200 or more:

Scores of 200+ 5 times

We can see that Kohli is now equal with Hammond and M Jayawardene in making 7 scores of 200+. The previous record of 6 for India was shared by him, Sehwag and Tendulkar. Kohli is also the only current player above.

The only other player with more than one triple century is CH Gayle, whose 4 scores of 200+ include 2 triples.

A total of 374 scores of 200+ have been made in Tests. This includes one quadruple century, 29 triples and 344 doubles.

All those who have made 200+ for India are tabulated below:

200+ for India

We also look at scores of 200+ in ODIs:

There are only 8 such scores.

RG Sharma has made 3, with a top score of 264 which is the ODI record.

Others who have made 200+ scores in ODIs are Fakhar Zaman, CH Gayle, MJ Guptill, V Sehwag and SR Tendulkar.

And for T20Is:

The highest score is 172 by AJ Finch. There are 2 other scores above 150, by AJ Finch again and H Zazai.

 

Five wickets in an innings and never again

So far, we have seen that

105 players scored a century on debut.

40 of them never scored a century again.

Of these 40, 19 never even scored a fifty again.

15 players took 10 wickets in a match on debut.

11 of them never took 10wm again.

Of these 11, 7 never even took 5wi again.

Now we look more closely at those who took 5wi on debut.

This seems more easy than scoring a century or taking 10wm on debut, since:

154 players took 5wi on debut. 9 of them took two fivers in the same match, making a total of 163 instances.

69 of them never took 5wi again.

Here is the list:

5wi on debut and never again

These include some (like Ganteaume and Redmond) who played only in one Test. Here we have WH Ashley (only one innings), DW Carr, MF Malone, CS Marriott, CA Smith and A Warren.

CS Marriott remains the only one to take a 10wm in his only Test. And there are several who played only 2 or 3 Tests.

In fact many did not even take 4 wickets in an innings (4wi) again.

There are 50 such players (amounting to 54 instances of 5wi). They are:

5wi on debut and never even 4wi again

Some current players such as L Embuldeniya, Mahmudullah, Nayeem Hasan and L Ngidi may yet take 4wi or 5wi in the future. Mahmudullah is now one of his team’s leading batsmen.

 

 

Muthusamy’s record, and the highest averages

At close on the Oct 10, 2019, which was the first day of the second India-SA Test at Pune, South Africa was yet to bat.

So Senuran Muthusamy temporarily holds the record of the most runs in a Test career without ever being dismissed:

Never dismissed in Tests

He is now ahead of the long-standing record of Afaq Hussain who made 66 (HS 35*) in 4 unbeaten innings in 2 Tests in 1961-64.

http://www.espncricinfo.com/pakistan/content/player/38975.html

Azhar Mahmood scored 128* and 50* on debut and thus scored 178 without being dismissed. He added another 19 in his third innings before he was dismissed for the first time.

JA Rudolph scored 222* on debut, and 71 in his next innings in his second Test.

The above table shows those with short careers who finished with no dismissal. SG Law scored 54* in his only innings, while his fellow debutant Ricky Ponting (96) went on to better things.

There are a few there who played in 3 Tests. However, the real achievement was that of Aijaz Cheema:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/pakistan/content/player/39821.html

In 7 Tests in 2011-12, he batted in 5 unbeaten innings for a total of 1 run.

We now move on to the related topic of the highest batting averages. Most statistics sources such as Cricinfo give this with a cutoff of 20 innings, as in this:

http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/records/282910.html

Which is headed by Bradman (99.94). followed by SPD Smith (64.56) and AC Voges (61.87). The only others with averages over 60 are Graeme Pollochk, George Headley and Herbert Sutcliffe.

But what if we do not have  a minimum number of innings? After Muthusamy and his unbeaten friends, we get:

(On Oct 10, 2019):

Highest batting averages (with no minimum number of innings):

Highest averages (unfiltered)

This is headed by current players KR Patterson and PP Shaw who are expected to play Tests in the future. Next is AG Ganteaume with his average permanently stuck at 112.00. Only then we have Bradman’s 99.94, followed by a couple of 1-Test players in the 90s.  Further down we have SPD Smith (64.56). AC Voges (61.87).

Soon we can expect Ganteaume to be back on top. And RE Redmond who is stuck on 81.50, followed by other 1-Test players such as JK Moss (60.00) and JA Morkel (58.00).

 

 

More records of the India-SA Test at Vizag

The fourth day was dominated by the second century by Rohit Sharma, where he achieved something which no other opener had done in Tests so far, by making twin centuries in the first Test where he had opened. That was something which CG Greenidge and AJ Strauss narrowly missed, and was not achieved by a galaxy of renowned openers from Hobbs and Sutcliffe to Gavaskar and Graeme Smith.

The final day appeared to be ready for a quick finish when 7 wickets fell rapidly before lunch. The batsmen finally put up some fight to take the score from 70/8 to 161/9 to 191-one of the relatively few innings where the score was doubled after the 8th wicket fell.

S Muthusamy (49*), the No 7 batsman and debutant put on 91 for the 9th wicket with DL Piedt (56, his first fifty). Finally Muthusamy put on 30 for the 10th wicket with K Rabada (18).

While India won by 203 runs, there were a number of statistical highlights by the South African batsmen:

Highest score by No 8-11 batsman against India in the 4th innings:

Highest by 8-11 against India in the 4th innings

Piedt’s 56 is the highest such score in India. The only other tailend fifty in India was NJ Astle’s 51* in 2003. Also note Griffith’s 40* which helped WI force a draw in 1967.

Then we look more carefully at S Muthusamy’s 33* (at no 8) and 49* (at no 7). He also took Kohli’s wicket.

Highest totals without a dismissal on debut:

Most runs on debut with no dismissal-1

His 82 is in the middle of this table. AG Kripal Singh and RG Nadkarni are also here.

Highest totals with two not out innings on debut:

Most runs on debut with no dismissal in two innings

He is in 5th position here. Azhar Mahmood is the only one with an unbeaten century AND fifty on debut, and GC Grant the only other one with two unbeaten fifties on debut. Muthusamy’s 82 is the highest such total against India, ahead of CM Old’s 50 in 1972. AE Trott also took 8-43 on his debut

Highest totals on debut without a fifty:

Most runs on debut without 50

Muthusamy is in 6th place here, though the topper LK Germon (89) and AJ Pycroft (85) scored more against India. The best by India is 74 by M Vijay followed by 73 by Akash Chopra.

Highest total in all Tests without a fifty:

Most runs in any Test without a fifty

This was, predictably, headed by someone with two 49s. No debutant reached 90 without a fifty, the record being 89 by Germon listed above.  G Kirsten of SA is second here.

Finally we look at the highest scores by No 10 against India:

No 9 against India

Piedt is 4th on this list and the highest in the 4th innings. His 56 is higher than Verity’s 55* in the first innings.