Review of Pakistan-Sri Lanka Tests

The 2-Test series in the UAE ended in a 2-0 win for Sri Lanka, which was the first defeat for Pakistan in the UAE since they moved there in 2010. The earlier series between Pakistan and Sri Lanka in the UAE have had an 1-0 win by Pakistan in 2011-12 and an 1-1 draw in 2013-14.

Here is the summary of all Tests between these teams:

Overall results

As we can see, the teams have been quite evenly matched-particularly in the UAE which has seen an equal number of wins by Pakistan, wins by Sri Lanka and draws.

We now look at individual statistics.

Batting: Most runs (750 and above):

Pak-SL runs

Sangakkara is far ahead of Younis who is also far ahead of the next (M. Jayawardene). Among those who played in this series, Azhar Ali is the only one with above 1000 runs although Asad Shafiq and others are catching up.

The most centuries are 10 by Sangakkara, followed by 8 by Aravinda and Younis.

The most scores of 50+ are 22 by Sangakkara, followed by 14 by Younis.

Highest individual scores (150 and above):

innings

This includes a triple century and several double centuries. This series was  somewhat low-scoring as the highest score was “only” 196 by Karunaratne. Note the Test at Faisalabad in October 1985 where two Pakistani batsmen scored double centuries in the same innings which were almost equal (203* and 206).

Batting averages (Minimum 20 innings, average 30 and above):

Batting average

Sangakkara is well ahead of the others, while the next two Inzamam and Mathews have almost identical averages. Among those who played in this series, the highest averages are by Azhar Ali, Asad Shafiq and Kaushal Silva.

Now for bowling:

Most wickets (20 and above):

Wkts

Herath has moved ahead of Muralitharan (like he has done against a few other teams). Saeed Ajmal has the most by Pakistan. Other current players here include Yasir Shah and Dilruwan Perera.

Herath has the most fivers (8) while three others have 5.

Herath is also the only one with more than one tenner.

Best innings bowling (all instances of 6wi and above):

innings bowling

Herath and Yasir Shah appear from the current series.

Best match bowling (all instances of 9wm and above):

Match bowling

Herath’s 11-wicket haul is the only one from the current series.

Bowling averages (Minimum 2000 balls, all instances):

Bowling average

The two Ws lead this table followed by Muralitharan and Herath.

To be precise, the best bowling averages are by Akram followed by Younis.

The best economy rates are by Akram followed by Abdur Rehman.

The best strike rates are by Younis followed by Akram (a reversal of the rankings for bowling average).

Now for fielding:

Most dismissals (15 and above):

Dismissals

Moin Khan has the most dismissals. However the fielder M. Jayawardene has more catches than him (37 to 35). Sarfraz Ahmed has the most stumpings (8). Younis Khan also has more catches (33) than any keeper other than Moin.

Note that several Sri Lankan players have played significant numbers of Tests as keepers and non-keepers. One of them (Dilshan) even took a few wickets as a bowler which theoretically makes him second to Walcott among the “triple all-rounders”.

Most innings dismissals (4 and above):

Innings fielding

Chandimal is the only keeper with 6 dismissals. Two fielders have 4 dismissals.

Most match dismissals (6 and above):

match fielding

The lesser-known of the Jayawardenes (the keeper, not the fielder) has 9 dismissals followed by K. Akmal and Chandimal with 8. However, Sarfraz Ahmed has the best innings and match performances in the current series.

Highest dismissal rate (Minimum 20 innings, 0.450 and above):

Dismissal rate

Headed by Moin Khan followed by Tillakaratne. Azhar Ali and Kaushal Silva appear from the current players, although Sarfraz Ahmed has not played enough in this series. However, he is soon likely to head this list.

Best overall all-round figures (see table for criteria):

AR-overall

The two best all-rounders of their teams at that time.

Best all-round match figures (fifty and fiver):

AR-match

Includes Saqlain (not really an all-rounder) and Dilruwan Perera from the current series, apart from Akram.

 

 

 

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Pakistan-a bastion crumbles.

First have a look at the entire history of Tests involving Pakistan at neutral venues:

Pakistan neutral

The 1999 match was part of the Asian Test championship which had the final played in Bangladesh, which was not a Test country at that time.

Apart from 9/11, an attack near the hotel where NZ’s team was staying in Karachi in early 2002 resulted in matches being moved out of the country. This began with a 3-Test series against Aus (with the first Test at Colombo and the next two at Sharjah). Australia won this 3-0.

After this, serious cricket returned to Pakistan for some years before the Lahore incident involving the SL team in Lahore in 2009 made it the last Test to be played in Pakistan.

Here are the matches played IN Pakistan since 1999:

Pakistan home

In this period Pakistan lost 2-1 to Sri Lanka in 2000, 1-0 to England later in 2000, 2-1 to India in 2004, and 1-0 to SA in 2007 before the end came in early 2009. The UAE become Pakistan’s adopted home from 2010 onwards, after one neutral series against Australia in England.

Although some series were drawn, Pakistan did record a 3-0 victory against England in 2012, and a 2-0 victory against Australia in 2014. While they beat WI 2-1 in late 2016, they lost 2-0 to Sri Lanka in the just concluded series. This involved their first loss at Abu Dhabi, and the first series loss in the UAE since 2010. And their last 3 Tests in the UAE have resulted in successive losses at Sharjah, Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

Certain venues like Bridgetown and Karachi were regarded as “fortresses” where visiting teams hardly ever won there. There are even such fortresses in domestic cricket including the IPL.

But the UAE may not be a fortress any more-which resulted in Pakistan moving from 1 to 7 in the rankings quite rapidly.

 

More about the honors boards at Lord’s-1

The feats of scoring a century, five wickets in an innings and ten wickets in a match in Test matches are documented on the boards at Lord’s. There are separate sets of boards for the home team (England), visiting teams and (more recently) teams in neutral Tests.

A total of 135 Tests have been played at Lord’s from 1884 to 2017. 133 involved England and only 2 were neutral. They were: Aus v SA in 1912 as part of the Triangular Tournament, and Aus v Pak in 2010.

3 Tests (including one neutral Test) were played in 1912 and 2010. From 1928 onwards (except in 1940-45) Lord’s has always had at least one Test. When England started hosting two visiting teams in 1965 (starting with NZ and SA) Lord’s always had a Test for each side. Since 2000 there have always been two teams and thus two Tests at Lord’s, except in 2010 when there were three.

Neutral Tests at Lord’s:

Neutral at Lord's

We first look at the scanty entries on the boards for neutral Tests:

Centuries:

Neutral at Lord's-Batting

Two from 1912 and none from 2010.

Five wickets in an innings:

Neutral at Lord's-Bowling

In contrast, there are two from 2010 and none from 1912. Watson and North recorded their first five-fors. In North’s case, he was an occasional bowler and this was his only five-for in Tests.

Ten wickets in an innings:

No instance. The two best match bowling figures are 6-55 by MJ North (as above) and 6-140 by Pakistan’s Mohammed Asif in the same match.

To be continued:

 

 

The triple clean sweep

The triple clean sweep in all 3 formats of cricket has been recorded once before, when Pakistan visited Australia in 2009-10. Australia won the Tests 3-0, the ODIs 5-0 and the single T20I (admittedly by only 2 runs). You can see the details here:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/series/index.html?season=2009%2F10;view=season

The second Test was won by the comparatively narrow margin of 36 runs.

Then came the ODIs:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/series/index.html?season=2009%2F10;view=season

The first 4 ODIs were rather one-sided although Australia won the 5th one by 2 wickets.

And finally:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/series/index.html?season=2009%2F10;view=season

Australia won this by just 2 runs, making it a 9-0 sweep. Remember that this was in their home country.

Nothing like this was achieved until India visited Sri Lanka in 2017:

Tests 3-0 with Sri Lanka losing by big margins:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/series/index.html?season=2017;view=season

ODIs 5-0, all by handsome margins except one win by 3 wickets:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/series/index.html?season=2017;view=season

And the T20I by a good margin:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/series/index.html?season=2017;view=season

Thus India emulated Australia’s 9-0 triple clean sweep, with somewhat bigger margins of victory. But unlike Australia, they achieved this away from home.

Salute Virat Kohli and his men.

Kohli captained all 9 matches, but faced a bewildering array of captains:

Tests: Herath, Chandimal, Chandimal

ODIs: Tharanga, Tharanga, Kapugedara, Malinga, Tharanga

T20I: Tharanga

In contrast, the Australian captain Ponting faced M. Yousuf in the three Tests and 4 of the 5 ODIs, when Afridi came in for the last one. In the T20I it was Clarke vs Shoaib Malik.

Tail piece:

Earlier, India won a T20I series 3-0 in Australia in early 2016 which was believed to be the only clean sweep by a visiting team in Australia in any format of cricket in a series of at least 3 matches:

https://abn397.wordpress.com/category/australia-t20/

Looking ahead to the Champions Trophy semi finals

Here we shall see that predicting on the basis of long-term form can be misleading.

This is being written after Pakistan beat England on Jun 14.

Let us look at all ODIs between England and Pakistan in 5 years up to Jun 13, 2017:

England led 7-2 in this period

In England, England led 4-1 (all in the summer of 2016). And the only match Pakistan won was at Cardiff.

No matches in Pakistan. On neutral grounds (UAE), England led 3-1.

So, on paper, it looked like Pakistan had no chance. But the result was something else.

Now let us do the same analysis for India and Bangladesh in the 5 years up to Jun 14, 2017

India led 5-2 with 1 no-result.

In India there were no matches.

In Bangladesh, India led 4-2 with 1 no-result

In neutral grounds (in Australia in the 2015 WC), India won 1-0

But it should be noted that the last series between India and Bangladesh was in Bangladesh in 2015, when Bangladesh won 2-1. Forgotten that already? See the series summary (and scorecards if you want):

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/series/870723.html

The key here was the “shock value” of  Mustafizur Rehman who made his debut here, with 5,6 and 2 wickets in the 3 matches. He was deservedly Man of the Series.

But then, he has not done too well in this tournament. See the details of his recent matches here: http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/player/330902.html

So we see that India does have a strong record over Bangladesh in the last 5 years. Just like England had over Pakistan. India should not be overconfident (remember the World Cup of 2007?)

 

The jinx in India-Pakistan matches

Note: This was written before the start of the 2017 Champions Trophy.

It is often said that India dominates Pakistan in ICC tournaments. Hence the “Mauka Mauka” ads which aired at the beginning of the 2015 World Cup.

Let us see take a closer look at the history of these encounters. First, the World Cup:

I v P World Cup

India and Pakistan never met in the World Cups of 1975, 1979, 1983 and 1987. They were somehow always drawn in different groups so they could have met only in the semi-finals or finals. It was not until 1992 that they met in the World Cup. In that tournament all teams played each other in the knockout stage.

They met in the quarter-finals in 1996, Super Six in 1999, and a pool match in 2003. India won all these matches so the feeling of a jinx over Pakistan kept growing.

In 2007, both India and Pakistan were jinxed and failed to proceed beyond the pool stage, being displaced by Bangladesh and Ireland respectively.

In 2011, India won in the semi-final and repeated this in a pool match in 2015. So India have won all 6 encounters.

If you want to see the scorecards, open this link and click on the blue square on the extreme right.

http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/stats/index.html?class=2;filter=advanced;opposition=7;orderby=start;team=6;template=results;trophy=12;type=team;view=results

Now we go to the T20 World Championship. We will come back to the Champions Trophy at the end.

I v P T20

The teams met twice in the inaugural championship in 2007. Though the match in the pool stage was a tie, India got the winner’s points as they won in the bowl-out which was then the method used to determine the winner of a tied match.

Then India won against Pakistan in the final. The teams did not meet in 2009 and 2010. India won the next three encounters in 2012, 2014 and 2016. All of these were in the group stages and not the semi-final or final. Thus India leads 5-0 (including the tie) in the World T20 Championship.

You can see the scorecards from this link:

http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/stats/index.html?class=3;filter=advanced;opposition=7;orderby=start;team=6;template=results;trophy=89;type=team;view=results

For details of the bowl-out in the first match in 2007, see the commentary section rather than the scorecard.

But the story in the Champions Trophy is somewhat different:

I v P Chamions

India and Pakistan did not meet in 1998, 2000 or 2002 (when India shared the trophy with Sri Lanka). Pakistan won the first encounter in 2004 in the group stage. They did not meet in 2006. Pakistan won in 2009, also in the group stage. India finally won in 2013, in a group match on their way to the trophy.

So the jinx on Pakistan in ICC tournaments does not apply to Pakistan in the Champions Trophy, where they lead India 2-1. Let us see what happens when they meet on June 4. India currently has a higher ranking than Pakistan, but that has no bearing in high-tension encounters like these.

See the scorecards here:

http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/stats/index.html?class=2;filter=advanced;opposition=7;orderby=start;team=6;template=results;trophy=44;type=team;view=results

 

 

Review of Tests between the West Indies and Pakistan-2

Continuing our review of all Tests between these teams, after the conclusion of the recent series.

Bowling-20 or more wickets:

P-WI wickets

Imran and Akram top the list, with Walsh having the most wickets for the West Indies. Among current players there are Yasir Shah (46), Bishoo (36) and Gabriel (25). The most 5wi are 6 by Imran and 5 by Yasir Shah. No one has taken 10wm more than once.

Best innings bowling-all cases of 6wi and above:

P-WI innings bowling

While Croft and Imran have the best innings figures for their teams, Yasir Shah’s 7-94 and 6-63, Mohammad Amir’s 6-44 and Gabriel’s 5-11 are from the just-concluded series. The second best figures of 8-49 were by Bishoo in the series in the UAE last year.

Best match bowling-all cases of 9wm and above:

P-WI match

Gabriel and Yasir Shah recorded 9-wicket hauls in this series, although the overall record of 12-100 was set by Fazal Mahmood long ago. Bishoo and Yasir Shah had  10-wicket hauls last year in the UAE.

Bowling averages (Minimum 2000 balls)-all instances:

P-WI bowl average

Croft has the best bowling average with Marshall and Wasim Akram close behind.

Of current players, Yasir Shah and Bishoo can be seen here.

The best economy rates are 2.05 by Gibbs and 2.36 by Fazal Mahmood.

The best strike rates are 39.6 by Waqar Younis and 41.7 by Croft.

Fielding: 12 or more dismissals:

P-WI dismissals

The record of 29 dismissals was set by Alexander long ago, though Kamran Akmal and Moin Khan are second with 25. The most stumpings is by Imtiaz Ahmed (8) and most by non-keepers 23 by Viv Richards and Younis Khan. Dowrich and Sarfraz Ahmed are slowly moving up.

Best innings fielding: 4 or more dismissals:

P-WI innings dismissals

The record of 5 is shared by DL Murray, Moin Khan and Kamran Akmal (twice). The most by non-keepers is 4 by Mathias, Logie and Taufeeq Umar.

Best match fielding: 5 or more dismissals:

P-WI match fielding

The much-maligned Kamran Akmal has the record of 9 dismissals, while Imtiaz Ahmed holds the record of 3 stumpings. The most catches by non-keepers is 5 by Logie, Taufeeq Umar and Younis Khan. Younis achieved this in the 2nd Test of this series.

Best dismissal rate (20 or more innings):

P-WI fielding average

No wicket-keepers figure in this list as none of them played enough. The best dismissal rate is by Younis Khan followed by Viv Richards.

All-round performance (see criteria in table):

P-WI AR

Even with these modest criteria, only Imran Khan qualifies with a respectable total of 775 runs and 80 wickets.

All-round match performance (fifty and 5wi in match):

P-WI AR match

Oddly enough, Imran did not achieve this but the then captain Mushtaq Mohammad’s all-round performance is one of the finest for Pakistan. And we are reminded of Gayle’s lesser-known bowling capability.