Slowest scoring rates in Tests

The ongoing Test between Zimbabwe and Bangladesh could be considered as a contest for No 9 in the Test rankings, but has had moments of statistical interest. First there was a 191-run stand for the 9th wicket which is the second highest in all Tests. Now there was another weird score by Zimbabwe’s debutant opener Takudzwanashe Kaitano  . We may need to remember his first name in the years to come.

He started off with 87 off 311 balls, which had a scoring rate of 27.97.

In the second innings he opened again, with Zimbabwe needing to make 477 in over 4 sessions. This time he scored 7 off 102 balls, and was out at 132/3.

What are the slowest scoring rates for innings over 100 balls?

Kaitano’s 6.86 is the third slowest here, with only JT Murray and today’s N Wagner ahead of him. India’s Yashpal Sharma did a little better with a scoring rate of 8.28.

Let us also look at the real batting marathons for innings over 500 balls:

These are all the scores above 500 balls where the number of balls were recorded. They were not recorded in some triple centuries such as Sobers’s 365*, Hanif’s 337 and Hammond’s 336*. It would be particularly interesting to see Hanif’s scoring rate.

Chanderpaul, Hammond and the lesser known Radley have the first three places here. Pujara has the slowest for India.

Finally, we look at the slowest scoring rates for careers exceeding 1000 balls faced. Again, full data is missing for many of them.

The slowest undisputed career scoring rates are for tailenders Morrison, Hoggard and JK Lever.

NS Yadav has the lowest (estimated) rate for India. His batting did help in saving at least a couple of Tests.

Jardine has the slowest scoring rate for frontline batsmen, unless you want to include TE Bailey in this category.

Batting recoveries 3: Doubling the score by the 8th wicket partners

The last post in our series on great batting recoveries covers cases where the 8th-wicket pair doubled the score after the 7th wicket fell. There are 24 such instances; 13 resulted in losses, 4 in draws and 7 in wins.

These matches are tabulated below:

Doubling the score after the 7th wicket fell


The highest such 8th-wicket partnership of 332 by Trott and Broad in that tainted Lord’s match of 2010, where it is very likely that Pakistan’s bowlers deliberately allowed them to add runs to satisfy the requirements of the fixers. The “genuine” highest partnership would then be the 313 by Akram and Saqlain in the only Test ever played at Sheikhpura.

The highest ratio of (8th wkt partnership)/( sum of 1st to 7th wicket partnerships) is 3.255 by Trott and Broad (102/7 to 434/8) followed by 2.423 by Absolom and Lord Harris (26/7 to 89/8). The lowest here is 1.053 by debutants Morkel and Vincent who went from 38/7 to 78/8.

Absolom and Harris did this as early as 1879, unlike the 9th wicket recoveries starting from 1946 and 10th wicket recoveries starting from 1980.

Soon afterwards Absolom became the first (and only?) Test player to be killed by sugar bags (or bananas?) falling from a ship’s crane.Also see

Lord Harris went on to bigger things, not necessarily in cricket. He did, however see England win in all his 5 Tests although he hardly contributed to these victories.

If you look at the ratio of (innings total)/(sum of 1st to 7th wicket partnerships) the highest is 4.333 where Blunt and Dickinson started the recovery from 21/7 to 64/8 which went on to 112. This was New Zealand’s first ever Test and noted for debutant MJC Allom’s hat-trick and 4 wickets in 5 balls. Next is 3.474 by Morkel and Vincent, who started with 38/7 and went to 78/8 and finally 170. This is a little better than 3.255 by Trott and Broad, 102/7 to 434/8 and finally 446.

The lowest is the anemic 1.250 by Pakistan in 2017, going from 36/7 to 78/8 and 81.

Of special note was the England-WI Test of 1966 which witnessed a 200+ stand for the 8th wicket (Graveney and Murray) as well as a 100+ stand for the 10th wicket (Higgs and Snow), taking them from 166/7 to 383/8, 399/9 and finally 527. This ended a series of heavy defeats by the West Indies, and marked the start of the short reign of the maverick captain DB Close.

When the tail wagged (Aug 2019)

In the ongoing Test at Kingston, India registered a somewhat rare triumph of a fifty at No 9 along with a century partnership.

Fifty plus by No 9 batsmen from India:

Fifty by no 9 from India

Ishant Sharma’s 57 is a little below the middle. There are several Indians above him, led by J Yadav who vanished as quickly as he got into the team. Even a century at no 9 does not help.

Century partnership for the 8th wicket by India:

Indias 8th wicket century partnership

Again, the partnership of 112 by Vihari and Ishant is a little below the middle. There is one against WI a little higher (120* by Dravid and Sarandeep in 2002).

For the sake of comparison, we also look at:

Fifty plus at No 9 against the West Indies:

Fifty by No 9 against WI

Here, too, Ishant is a bit lower than the middle. The highest for India is 79 by Kunderan in 1966-67. The highest for India in the West Indies is 68 by BS Sandhu. Oddly enough, Sandhu’s 71 against Pakistan in 1982-83 is the best on debut by a No 9 in all Tests.

Century partnerships for the 8th wicket against the West Indies:

cent parnership for 8th wkt against WI.

The Vihari – Sharma partnership is the 8th highest here, while the 120* by Dravid and Sarandeep is the 6th highest. The highest partnership of 217 was part of one of the more remarkable comebacks in all Tests, when Brian Close captained for the first time:

This involved a recovery from 166/7 to 527 and fifty-plus from the No 9, 10 and 11 batsmen (Murray, Higgs and Snow).