Arise, Sir Ravindra!

When we write about the exploits of Sir Ravindra Jadeja, we would later have to describe the exploits of Baron Ravichandran Ashwin, Lord Cheteshwar Pujara, the Honourable Virat Kohli and Prince Ajinkya Rahane (not to forget the evil Duke Rohit Sharma).

Today, however, we take up the all-round feat of scoring a fifty-plus and a five-plus in the same Test. This is not such a big deal, as it has been achieved on 197 occasions in all Tests, and several players including most of the famous all-rounders have done it more than once.

For the moment, we look at the 22 occasions where this was achieved by India in Tests:

jadeja1

Virtually every Indian all-rounder of note is there, including Kapil (4 times), Ashwin (3) and Bhuvaneswar Kumar (2). Also note the gallant efforts by Vinoo Mankad (1952) and Umrigar (1962) which did not prevent defeat. Note who is the most recent entrant.

However, only 7 of these efforts resulted in an Indian victory:

jadeja2

and you can see who the latest entrant was.

Now let us see the list of these performances in India-New Zealand Tests:

jadeja3

Only 5 occasions, 3 by NZ and 2 by India. And how many of these resulted in victory?

jadeja4

Only 2 such occasions, one featuring the nearly forgotten John Bracewell (who nevertheless brought New Zealand its second and last Test win in India). And Sir Jadeja, who got the man of the match award to go along with his knighthood.

 

Advertisements

Cricketing coincidences-2

A well-known one pertains to the very first Test at Melbourne in March 1877 and the Centenary Test a hundred years later. In both cases Australia won by 45 runs.

See the scorecard of 1877:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62396.html

and of 1977:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/63189.html

Although the story-lines of the two Tests are somewhat different, the end result was the same. Note that one performance in the 1877 Test remains a Test record even today.

Now here is another lesser-known one involving two brothers-Tony Greig (58 Tests) and the lesser-known Ian Greig (2 Tests). Tony had one of the best all-round debuts including 4-53. His brother also took 4-53 on debut.

Tony: http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/63084.html

Ian:   http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/63317.html

Finally another one including two Tests, which had somewhat more similarities than the two Tests at Melbourne.

Our story begins at the India-Australia Test at Kanpur in 1959-60, which you will remember as India’s first victory over Australia:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62869.html

Jasu Patel’s figures of 9-69 and 14-124 stood as records for a long time. The first one was bettered only by Anil Kumble in 1998-99, and the second was bettered only by Narendra Hirwani in 1987-88.

Other points to note are:

  1. India won by over 100 runs after conceding a first-innings lead
  2. An Australian left-arm pace bowler (Davidson) took 12 wickets (5 and 7)

Almost 20 years passed. Kanpur saw 7 drawn Tests in succession, and got the reputation of being the deadest Test pitch in the world. These Tests were generally dull draws, with some highlights like GR Viswanath’s duck and century on debut in 1969-70 and India’s then highest total of 644/7 in 1978-79. Then came another Australian team in 1979-80, admittedly a rather weak team without the Packer players.

This was the result:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/63243.html

There was no record-breaking bowling like that of Jasu Patel, but still

  1. India won by over 100 runs after conceding a first-innings lead
  2. An Australian left-arm pace bowler (Dymock) took 12 wickets (5 and 7)

Add to this the fact that both Australian bowler’s names started with a D, and there are certainly more coincidences than in the better-known Tests at Melbourne.

India and Australia have met only three times in Tests at this venue, in 1959-60, 1969-70 and 1979-80 but the 10-year cycle was broken in the next decade.