Thirimanne’s record

So England ultimately won the series against Sri Lanka 2-0, but there were some periods in both Tests where it seemed that the hosts had a chance of winning.

In the second Test, Lasith Embuldeniya took 7 wickets in the first innings and went on to take his first “tenner” in the match. It may have escaped notice that Lahiru Thirimanne took 5 catches as a fielder in the first innings, all of them off Lasith’s bowling.

See the scorecard: https://www.espncricinfo.com/series/england-in-sri-lanka-2020-21-1242951/sri-lanka-vs-england-2nd-test-1243016/full-scorecard

There are several instances of non-keepers taking 5 catches in an innings:

However, Lahiru Thirimanne is the only one who took all 5 catches off the same bowler.

There are a few instances of a fielder taking 4 catches off the same bowler, as that of J Blackwood doing so against Sri Lanka off the bowling of KC Brathwaite. (That was a fluke instance as he never took 4 wickets in an innings in any other Test).

There is at least one instance for India. AL Wadekar took 4 catches off BS Bedi in an innings at Christchurch in 1967-68.

While Lasith took a further 3 wickets in England’s second innings, Thirimanne failed to take another catch. However, his 5 catches off the same bowler may also be a match record in all Tests.

The Test debutants of 2019

Good performances by those who made their Test debut in 2019:

Batting:

40 or more in an innings:

Highest innings-40

One century was made by Pakistan’s Abid Ali. He scored another century in his second Test.

The next highest was by I Zadran of Afghanistan.

DJ Mitchell did not play in the Aus-NZ series which followed his debut.

van der Dussen scored another fifty (68) in his second Test. He had also done well in the World Cup before his Test debut.

Muthusamy played only 2 Tests and does not seem to be in the running now.

80 or more in the match:

80 runs in match

Zadran also scored over a hundred on debut. Muthusamy scored 82 without being dismissed.

Bowling:

4 or more wickets in an innings:

Wkts-4wi

Embuldeniya has added a 4-for to his 5-for on debut.

Linde has not played in a Test after his debut.

Amir Hamza’s team has not played a Test after his debut. He also made 34.

6 or more wickets in a match:

Wkts-6wm

While JA Richardson (with the curious forename of Jhye) did well on debut, he was not considered for Australia’s Tests later in the year. He is a regular for 20 and 50 over cricket.

Embuldeniya is now a regular, while Adair and Hamza await their side’s infrequent Tests.

Fielding:

3 dismissals in an innings:

3 dis in innings

Not much heard about them, although Klaasen had been a regular in 20 and 50 over cricket.

5 dismissals in an match:

5 dis in match

Alikhil still awaits another Test for Afghanistan, and has played in 50-over cricket.

Patterson also scored a century in his second Test, but does not find a place in the current Australian side.

All-round:

40 runs and 4 wickets:

40 runs and 4 wickets

Only Linde, who is not in the current SA team.

30 runs and 3 dismissals:

30 runs and 3 dis

I Zadran did well as a fielder, although Patterson may not add to his 2 Tests for a while.

The most promising of the newcomers seem to be Abid Ali, van der Dussen, Embuldeniya and Amir Hamza. Others have not done much, particularly as some teams have limited opportunities.