Landmark-the 4000th Test century

During the long break between Test matches between mid-May and early August, one can look back at the landmarks passed during the 2016-17 season. Practically any Test series which starts between May and September is considered to be the 2017 season.

One landmark which went unnoticed was the neat round figure of 4000 Test centuries which was achieved by Roston Chase in his ultimately futile 101* in the fourth innings at Roseau.

Here are the landmark centuries, which can be easily identified through Statsguru. Here we have included the Aus v ICC World XI Test which started on 14/10/2005. And Matthew Hayden scored 111 in this match. Some may feel that this should not be counted as a “real” Test. That correction can also be made.

For the moment, we do include Hayden’s century in the list.

100th: J.Sharp, 105, Eng v Aus, match starting 09/08/1909

500th: RN Harvey, 178, Aus v SA, 31/12/1949

1000th: WM Lawry, 205, Aus v WI, 26/12/1968

1500th: GS Chappell, 115, Aus v Eng, 10/12/1982

2000th: ME Waugh, 137, Aus v Eng, 05/08/1993

2500th: RT Ponting, 144, Aus v Eng, 16/08/2001

3000th: W Jaffer, 100, Ind v Eng, 01/03/2006

3500th: KC Sangakkara, 168, SL v SA, 26/12/2011

4000th: RL Chase, 101*, WI v Pak, 10/05/2017

Note the high proportion of Australian batsmen in these landmark centuries.

Now if you disregard the ICC XI Test and Hayden’s century, the numbers from 3000 onward will change:

3000th: AN Cook, 104*,Eng v Ind, 01/03/2006 (and Jaffer moves to 2999. This was Cook’s Test debut)

3500th: TT Samaraweera, 102, SL v SA, 26/12/2001 (Sangakkara moves to 3499)

4000th: Chase moves to 3999, and this landmark will be the next century, perhaps in the next test between Eng and SA starting on 06/07/2017

Review of Tests between the West Indies and Pakistan-1

Pakistan’s tour of the West Indies in 2016-17 was historic in more than one way. Besides the overly sentimental last Test series for Younis Khan and Misbah-ul-Haq, this was the first time that Pakistan had won a Test series in the West Indies. Pakistan had won series in Pakistan and neutral venues before. But their best results in the West Indies had been draws; 1-1 in 1987-88, 2005 and 2011. Until their 2-1 victory this time.

Here is a summary of all Tests between the two countries:

P-WI overall

As we can see, Pakistan has consistently done better at home and in neutral venues, but not in the West Indies. There was a long gap between 1959 and 1975 when these teams did not meet.

We start with the batting records:

Most runs (500 and above):

P-WI Runs

Among current players, Younis Khan has the highest with 1030 followed by Azhar Ali, Misbah-ul-Haq and RL Chase.

M. Yousuf has the most centuries (7) followed by Inzamam and Lara with 4. M. Yousuf also has the most scores of 50-plus (10) while several others have 9. The most by a West Indies player is 9 by Viv Richards.

Highest individual scores (125 and above):

P-WI innings

While Gary Sobers’s former world record has pride of place, it is followed by Hanif Mohammad’s ultra-defensive 337 from the same series. From the current series only Chase (131) and Azhar Ali (127) qualify.

Best batting averages (minimum 20 innings, all instances):

P-WI average

Wasim Raja surprisingly tops this, while only Younis Khan is here from current players. Many prominent players such as Mohammad Yousuf, Gary Sobers and Misbah did not play enough innings. But you can see their averages in the first table above.

Enough for now. Will look at bowling, fielding and all-round records in the next post.

 

Little-known facts about Bangladesh cricket-1

A common question asked is “Was there any East Pakistani who played in Tests for Pakistan?” and most cricket fans, even from that part of the world, are not sure of the answer.

As Bob Dylan might say: the answer, my friend, is not blowing in the wind, but can be found after some research on the internet.

See this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/East_Pakistan_first-class_cricket_teams

and a list of East Pakistani cricketers here:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_East_Pakistan_first-class_cricketers

Note this extract:

“These included six Test cricketersMahmood Hussain, Mohammad Munaf, Mufassir-ul-Haq, Nasim-ul-Ghani, Naushad Ali, and Niaz Ahmed[6] No native East Pakistanis, Bengali or otherwise, represented Pakistan’s national side at Test level. The closest was Raqibul Hasan, who was twelfth man against the touring New Zealanders during the 1969–70 season, and the following season represented a full-strength Pakistan side against a Commonwealth XI.[7] Raqibul went on to serve as Bangladesh’s inaugural captain in the 1979 ICC Trophy, and later played two One Day International (ODI) matches for the team.[8] Two other East Pakistan players went on to play for Bangladesh in ICC Trophy matches—Ashraful Haque and Shafiqul Haque.[9][10]”

However, the information in this extract is not quite correct. The first 5 Pakistani players mentioned were indeed from West Pakistan and appear to have spent some time in East Pakistan for employment or other reasons. Mahmood Hussain and Nasim-ul-Ghani were fairly prominent in their time.

However, the case of Niaz Ahmed is different.

http://www.espncricinfo.com/pakistan/content/player/42069.html

and https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Niaz_Ahmed

The Wikipedia entry is more detailed than the one on Cricinfo. Niaz Ahmed was born in Benares in the United Provinces (now Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh) and his family moved to East Pakistan after Partition. He appears to have spent his early life there, when he made his two Test appearances in 1967 and 1968-69. He and his family then moved to Pakistan after the liberation of Bangladesh and settled in Karachi. He died there in 2000.

While he appears to have been originally from UP and not a Bengali, he did spend his early life in East Pakistan and started his cricketing career there. Thus, although he did not achieve much in his Test career (2 Tests, 17 runs and 3 wickets) we have to consider him as the only permanent resident of East Pakistan to have played in official Tests for Pakistan.

Then there is Raqibul Hasan:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/bangladesh/content/player/56070.html

and https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raqibul_Hasan_(cricketer,_born_1953)

He was indeed a Bengali, born in Dacca in 1953. He was also 12th man in the P v NZ Test at Dacca in 1968-69, though those outside the playing XI are ignored in the records. However, he did play in what might be called an unofficial Test side, for the BCCP  XI vs International XI in early 1971, just before the Liberation War began:

Scorecard of this match:

http://static.espncricinfo.com/db/ARCHIVE/1970S/1970-71/INT-XI_IN_PAK/INT-XI_BCCP-XI_26FEB-01MAR1971.html

The BCCP  XI seems to be practically a full-strength Pakistani team, as most of the players did play in the Test series in England later in 1971-the same season in which India recorded its first Test and series win in England.

Note that the International XI consisted mainly of English players (essentially fringe and former Test players). Probably the best known members would be wicketkeeper JT Murray and the Australian bowler Neil Hawke. It is not clear how Pakistani test player Younis Ahmed and another Pakistani first-class player Wahid Yar Khan were playing in this team.

(Wahid Yar Khan, like Asif Iqbal, had grown up in Hyderabad in India and started his cricket career there before moving to Pakistan in the 1960s).

After this, Raqibul, like most Bengalis in East Pakistan, underwent a lot of hardships when the war resulted in  the deaths of many of his family and friends. He went on to be Bangladesh’s first cricket captain in the initial stages, and even played in two ODIs in the Asia Cup in 1985-86 besides a number of other limited-over matches (such as those in the ICC Trophy in 1979) which did not have ODI status. At that time Bangladesh was classified as an Associate and only their Asia Cup matches had ODI status.

So the question is now answered. Niaz Ahmed was the only permanent resident of East Pakistan who played for Pakistan in Tests.

And Raquibul Hasan was the only Bengali who played for Pakistan in what can be described as an unofficial Test.

 

More on Misbah-ul-Haq and the 99ers.

A follow up of the earlier posts:

https://abn397.wordpress.com/2017/04/25/unbeaten-scores-of-99199-and-299/

and

https://abn397.wordpress.com/2017/04/26/more-on-test-nineties/

Some more points of interest:

Those who scored 99 and 0 in the same Test:

99 and 0

No one has done this on debut. But Misbah is the only captain to achieve this rare feat.

99 and 0 Capt

99 and hundred in the same Test: This has occurred only twice:

G Boycott 99 and 112, E v WI, 1973-74

RT Ponting 101 and 99, A v SA, 2008-09

Boycott never made centuries in each innings of a Test. Ponting did so thrice, a Test record he shares with SM Gavaskar and DA Warner. Unlike the others, he did so thrice in a single season (2005-06), once against WI and twice against SA.

There have been a total of 90 scores of 99 in a Test, including 6 not outs. The list can be seen here, in chronological order:

http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/stats/index.html?class=1;filter=advanced;opposition=1;opposition=2;opposition=25;opposition=3;opposition=4;opposition=5;opposition=6;opposition=7;opposition=8;opposition=9;orderby=player;qualmax2=99;qualmin2=99;qualval2=batted_score;size=200;team=1;team=2;team=25;team=3;team=4;team=5;team=6;team=7;team=8;team=9;template=results;type=batting;view=innings

Misbah is the only one to make THREE 99s in Tests, which included one not out.

From this list, you can see that 9 others have made two 99s. Of these, Boycott is the only one to get a not out.

Full list of captains who made 99:

Captain 99

Misbah did so thrice. No other captain has more than one 99. There are some like Atherton, Ganguly and Salim Malik who had one 99 as captain and another 99 while not captain.

The full list of unbeaten 99s:

99 not out

No one has done this on debut, though three (Chipperfield, RJ Christiani and Asim Kamal) scored 99 on debut. This 99 remained Asim Kamal’s highest Test score.

Pollock and Misbah are the only captains to score an unbeaten 99.

Of these 6 scores of 99*, only one (Tudor) occurred when a batsman was left on 99 while his team was chasing a target. In all other cases the team was bowled out.

Finally, here is a list of all unbeaten 90s in Tests which ended when the team won in the 4th innings:

Unbeaten 90 while chasing

Next to Tudor’s 99, there are 98s by Hutton, Greg Chappell, Atherton and Ganguly.

Boycott’s 99* came when his team was bowled out in the 4th innings and lost. He had carried his bat through the innings.

In the 4th innings of drawn matches, the highest unbeaten 90 is 95* by McCosker, at Leeds in 1975. There was no play on the final day due to deliberate sabotage of the pitch for reasons unconnected with cricket. See:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Davis_(robber)

 

 

 

More on Test nineties

Hope you have read the previous post about 99s.

Nineties in both innings:

90 both innings

Clem Hill was particularly fond of 90s as he scored 99 followed by 98 and 97 mentioned above.

Nineties on debut:

90 debut

While Chipperfield and Christiani later scored centuries, Asim Kamal finished with his 99 on debut as his top score. VH Stollmeyer made 96 in his only Test innings, which was unfortunately just before WW2 broke out. His younger brother Jeff Stollmeyer had a longer run and captained the West Indies.

Another point of interest is LJ Tancred’s 97 which was the highest score on debut by a South African-until Kepler Wessels scored a century on debut  for Australia in 1982-83. The first “genuine” century on debut by a South African was 163 by AC Hudson in the comeback Test against WI in 1991-92.

A number of famous names narrowly missed a century on debut. They include Redpath, Worrell, Ponting, Dravid, SP Fleming  and FS Jackson. Many lesser names scored a century on debut and did nothing much afterwards.

PA Gibb (93 and 106) and CG Greenidge (93 and 107) scored a 90 and 100 on debut.

Several players have made two 99s. The latest addition to this club was Musbah-ul-Haq.

If you take all scores between 90 and 99, the record of 10 is shared by Dravid, Tendulkar and Steve Waugh. Next is MJ Slater with 9, with de Villiers, Inzamam and Kallicharan with 8.

Unbeaten scores of 99,199 and 299

Test scores of 99 are more common than one may imagine. Misbah’s score of 99 in the ongoing Test at Kingston was the 89th such instance. The first such score was by Clem Hill against England in early 1902.

Scores of 99* are somewhat rarer. Here is the full list of such scores in chronological order:

99 NO

The first such score was recorded only in late 1979. Boycott carried his bat through this innings.

Boycott had a special affinity for 99, as he was the first to score 99 and a century in the same Test:  http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/63121.html

That series-equalling win was also due to Tony Greig’s little-used off-spin which got him 13 wickets in the match.

RT Ponting (101 and 99) was the only other batsman to score a century and 99 in the same Test, which was against South Africa at Melbourne in 2008-09.

All the scores of 99* (except that of Tudor) ended when the team was bowled out. Tudor’s 99* remains the only one where the team was chasing a target. This Test, which immediately followed the 1999 World Cup, had a rather weird scorecard:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/63841.html

10 wickets fell on the first day and 21 on the second. At close England was 3 for 1 facing a target of 208. Alex Tudor, who normally batted at 8 or below, had come in as a nightwatchman at the fall of the first wicket. On the 3rd day it looked as if he would get a century but his fourth-wicket partner Graham Thorpe was in a hurry to finish things off, leaving Tudor stranded on his highest Test score of 99*. It was to be his only score above 50.

199s and 199*s are still rarer. Here is a complete list of the 11 instances:

199

The first 199 was scored in late 1984 by Mudassar Nazar, and the most recent by KL Rahul. Both the unbeaten 199s came when the teams were bowled out. Andy Flower scored 142 in addition to 199* in a follow-on as his side lost the Test. (That match ended on 9/11 in 2001).

Sangakkara was more fortunate as his team won.

And 299? Two such instances, the first one being unbeaten:

299

Martin Crowe’s 299 was the New Zealand record for over two decades until McCullum made 302.  Let us have a closer look at Bradman’s unbeaten 299:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62601.html

This was the 4th Test of Australia’s 5-0 whitewash of South Africa, who had not yet fully graduated from whipping boys. Bradman was stranded on 299 when the No 11 HM Thurlow was run out for 0 on his debut. Thurlow also failed to take a wicket in two innings. Predictably his first Test was his last.

Karun Nair’s Test records

You will remember the fuss about Karun Nair when he scored his triple century in his third Test at Chennai. We now look at his oddly skewed Test career after he has completed 6 Tests. This should be apparent from this sequence of scores:

KK Nair innings seq

He has a respectable average of 62.33. But he scored 303 of his 374 runs in one innings (81.0 %) and never made another score above 50. To be precise, his next highest score is only 26.

It is hoped that he will play at least a few more Tests and score more centuries. Until then, he holds a couple of records in all Tests. This does NOT include the highest maiden century, as Gary Sobers (365*) and Bob Simpson (311) are ahead.

Highest score by someone who scored only one century ( 150 and above):

Highest score with one century

KK Nair heads this list, ahead of England’s RE Foster who held the record for about 113 years. His 287 was the world Test record until early 1930 when Andy Sandham made 325 (in his last Test), though Bradman crossed it with 334 later the same year.

Foster, Kuruppu, Fawad Alam, K Ibadulla, C Bannerman and A Jackson  were making their Test debuts. Gillespie made his only century in his last Test while batting as nightwatchman. There are several other current players here led by MT Renshaw with 184.

Another quirky record is the highest Test score made by someone who never made a fifty (i.e. a score between 50 and 99). This gets a bit messy due to Statsguru’s limitations, but we get these figures:

Highest score by those who scored one century and no fifty (110 and above):

1 century no fifty

Highest score by those who scored two centuries and no fifties (all cases):

Two century, no fifty

And finally:

Highest score by those who scored three centuries and no fifties (all cases):

Three century no fifty

No one has scored more than three centuries without a fifty. For a short time KL Rahul shared the record with Bopara. But Rahul scored his first fifty soon after he scored his third century.

As we can see, KK Nair is the only one to score a triple century but no fifty. David Lloyd and Brendon Kuruppu are the only ones to score a double century but no fifty. And Ravi Bopara’s Test career may be over, but he also holds a record which may not be broken for a long time.

KK Nair is also the only current player with one or more centuries and no fifties.