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):


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):


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):


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):


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

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


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





Pink-ball Test records

A total of five day-night Tests (or pink-ball Tests) have been played until now. All 5 have had results:


It can be seen that all 5 Tests have been won by the hosts (if you consider Pakistan to be the host at Dubai).

While we do not have enough of a sample set to seriously look at aggregates and averages, we can certainly look at innings and match performances. We start with

Batting: Highest innings (50 and above):

Innings above 50

There are already an impressive array of centuries including a double and a triple.

Bowling: best innings bowling (4wi and above):


Bishoo’s 8-for did not help his side to win, though Hazlewood’s 6wi did.

Bowling: best match bowling (6wm and above):


Bishoo and Hazlewood lead once again. Bishoo has the only 10wm so far.

Fielding: best innings fielding (3 dismissals or more):


Wade and Nevill have the most dismissals (5 and 4) while a few non-keepers have 3 catches.

Fielding: best match fielding (6 dismissals or more):


Nevill and Wade both made 7 dismissals, while SPD Smith has 4 catches as a non-keeper.

All-round: 50 and 4wi in the match:


Only one instance, with Starc making 53 and 4-80.



Tests between Australia and Pakistan-1

With this 3-0 sweep by Australia in Australia, this is the final record for Tests between the two countries:


What is more important is that Pakistan has lost 3-0 in 4 successive test series in Australia, namely in:





In between, on neutral venues Australia won 3-0 in SL and UAE in 2002-03, drew 1-1 in England in 2010, and Pakistan won 2-0 in UAE in 2014-15. No matches were drawn in these series.

We now look at the statistics for individual players:


Most runs (750 and above):


The first few places are predictable. Miandad, Border, Greg Chappell and Ijaz Ahmed scored 6 centuries apiece. The most 50+ scores were 14 by Border and Zaheer Abbas. followed by 13 by Miandad. Current players in this list include Younis Khan and Azhar Ali.

Highest scores (160 and above):


Among current players there are Azhar Ali, MT Renshaw, Younis Khan and SPD Smith.

Azhar Ali’s 205* is the highest for Pakistan in Australia, surpassing Majid Khan’s 158 in Melbourne in 1972-73. Younis Khan with 175* also surpassed this later in the series.

Batting averages (Minimum 20 innings, complete list):


Interesting that Mark Taylor has a much higher average than the second-placed Ponting. Younis Khan is the only current player who has played 20 innings. He has the highest average among Pakistani players. This list goes down to McGrath and his likes with single-figure averages. Wasim Bari has a surprisingly low average.

Now for bowling performances:

Most wickets (20 and above):


The first few are predictable. Mohammed Amir and Yasir Shah are the only current players here.

The most fivers were by Warne (6) and Lillee (5).

The most tenners were also by Warne (2).

The best innings bowling (including all hauls of 7 or more wickets):


None from the recent past. The table is headed by Sarfraz Nawaz’s freak performance in 1978-79, where his spell of 7 for 1 reduced Australia from 305/3 to 310 and defeat.

Best match bowling (including all hauls of 9 wickets and above):


Again, nothing from recent years. Fazal Mahmood’s record 13-114 in the first Test between these teams has remained a record since 1956, while Imran’s 12-165 in 1977 brought Pakistan it’s first victory in Australia.

Bowling averages (Minimum 2000 balls bowled, all instances):


Fairly predictable, with no one from recent years.

It can also be seen that the best economy rates were 2.23 by Tauseef Ahmed, 2.25 by Iqbal Qasim and 2.40 by Imran. The best strike rates were 45.0 by Warne, 47.9 by McGrath and 59.8 by Wasim Akram.

To be continued.



Test batting performances of 2016

These tables cover all Test matches in the calendar year 2016.

This post concentrates on batting.

Most runs (500 and above):


As many as 7 with over 1000 runs (including 4 from England). Root just edged out Bairstow.

4 centuries each by V Kohli, S Smith and MM Ali.

The most scores of 50+ are 13 by JE Root and 11 by JM Bairstow. Three others have 9.

Highest innings scores (140 and above):


Headed by a newcomer KK Nair and a relative veteran in Azhar Ali. This was Nair’s maiden Test century. V Kohli had three scores of 200 and above. BA Stokes’s 258 was the highest by any No 6 batsman in Tests, surpassing KD Walters’s 250 in 1976-77.

Highest batting averages (Minimum 15 innings, 20.00 and above):


Also note the highest strike rates for a minimum of 15 innings: Warner (86.87), Sarfraz (70.33) and Stokes (66.76).

To be continued