Shane Watson’s Test career

Although Shane Watson‘s Test career was not extraordinary, he fulfilled the role of a batting all-rounder for some years. His contribution to limited overs cricket was more striking, as he holds the record for Australia’s top score in ODIs (185*) and second highest in T20Is (124*).

Leaving out the Test against the ICC XI, he played 58 Tests, scoring 3697 runs and taking 75 wickets. If we compare his all-round performance in those of other Australians who had a minimum of 1000 runs and 50 wickets, it is above average but not outstanding (9th out of 22). The only other Australian of that time who might be called an all-rounder was Mitchell Johnson, who was a considerably better bowler but certainly a worse batsman.

Watson1

However, Watson does have one claim to fame in that he is one of only 4 players to feature on the “neutral” honours board at Lord’s. More about the honours boards here:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lord’s_honours_boards

Only two neutral Tests have been played here. One was between Australia and South Africa as part of the experimental triangular Test series of 2012:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62391.html

Australia easily defeated South Africa by 10 wickets. In general it was felt that the triangular Test series was a bad idea and it was not repeated. The nearest revival it got was the interlocking tours of England and West Indies to Australia in 1979-80.

Then there was the Test between Australia and Pakistan in 2010:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/426394.html

The neutral honours boards thus have these entries:

Batting:

watson2

Bowling:

Watson3

(There is also a board for ten wickets in a match, which does not have any entries yet).

The actual board being “unveiled” with the new entries:

Watson4

This Test marked the Test debuts of Steve Smith (1, 12 and 3-51) and Azhar Ali (16 and 42). Watson got the first of his three fiversĀ  while North got his only one here. This match marked Shahid Afridi’s only Test as captain; after this he retired from Tests altogether.

In the second neutral Test at Leeds, Salman Butt’s ill-fated captaincy began with a 3-wicket victory over Australia.

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/426395.html

Watson recorded his career-best 6-33 in this Test, while the two As (Asif and Amir) combined to bowl Australia out for 88.

 

 

Summary of T20Is between Australia and India

With India’s 3-0 sweep of the T20I series, India has made its first clean sweep in a bilateral series in Australia in any format of cricket. It has been pointed that no other visiting team has clean-swept Australia* in any format since international cricket began in 1877. Savour the moment.

*Mayukh Ghosh points out that this is true for all series with 3 or more matches, although England did win both Tests of 1886-87.

At the end of this series, this is the record of all T20Is between the two countries:

Overall record

India had led 5-4 at the start of the series and extended their lead to 8-4.

Most runs (100 and more):

Total runs

Note that Watson has scored the only century here. Kohli, Watson, Yuvraj and Rohit each have three scores of 50+.

Rohit and Dhoni are the only ones to have played in all T20Is between the two countries.

Highest individual scores (50 and more):

Best innings scores

Both Watson and Kohli made the record scores for their teams in this series.

Highest batting averages (for all those who batted in at least 5 innings):

Batting avg and SR

You can also see that Yuvraj (166.87) and Watson (162.28) have the highest strike rates.

Most wickets (4 and more):

Total wkts

Best innings bowling (3wi or more)

Best innings bowling

Ashwin is the only one to take 4 wickets in an innings. Young Bumrah recorded the best for India vs Aus in Aus at Adelaide during this series.

Best bowling averages (15 overs or more):

Bowling average etc

Watson has the best average, Harbhajan the best economy and Watson again has the best strike rate.

Most dismissals (4 and more):

Total dismissals

Note that Jadeja has the most catches by a fielder.

The most dismissals in an innings is 3 by Dhoni on two occasions. Several fielders have taken 2 catches in an innings.

Best dismissal rate (for 5 or more innings fielded):

Dismissal rate

Here too Jadeja has the highest dismissal rate for non-keepers.

Best overall all-round performances:

All-round overall

Here Yuvraj comes out on top, admittedly with less bowling but a good bowling average.

Best all-round match performances (Minimum 20 runs and 2 wickets):

All-round match

Watson’s feat is clearly the better one.