Part-time wicket keepers in Tests

Here we take up the cases where someone was not the nominated keeper in a Test, took over when the nominated keeper was unfit or unavailable and took one or more catch or stumping while doing so.

Catches as keeper while not nominated keeper:

These are all the 38 players who took at least 1 catch in their careers.

The number of Tests here are those when they were not nominated keepers. Some, notably de Villiers and Bairstow in recent years, have been nominated keepers in some Tests. These are not included in the above table.

Stumpings while not nominated keeper:

Similarly, these are the 15 players who have taken at least 1 stumping in their career as a non-keeper.

These lists overlap. It is better to consolidate them into a single list.

Consolidated list of players who have taken at least one catch as keeper and/or one stumping in Tests where they were not nominated keepers:

Among these 43 players, AB de Villiers has the most catches and most dismissals (12 each) followed by KC Sangakarra and TWM Latham (7 each).

The most stumpings are 2 by Tillakaratne, M Wasim and Christiani.

This also lists the total number of dismissals (as a fielder) in these Tests. The highest is 133 by de Villiers followed by 96 by Collingwood with a few others in the 90s.

Although it is not mentioned here, de Villiers played another 24 Tests as nominated keeper and took a further 89 catches and 5 stumpings there. Similarly, Collingwood never played any Test as a nominated keeper, so his career total of catches is 96 as shown above. Sangakkara played a further 48 Tests as nominated keeper and took 124 catches and 20 stumpings, to give him a total of 202 dismissals.

From the first two tables above, we can see that the most dismissals in a match by these keepers is 5 by Imrul Kayes, followed by 4 for several others. The case of Majid Khan’s 4 catches is particularly interesting, and deserves a separate post.

Analyzing Test captaincies – 5

Today we look at captains whose tenure included:

Only wins

Only losses

Only draws.

Only wins (complete list):

16 instances here. Bacher and Lord Hawke had the best stretches of 4 wins out of 4. In the former case all 4 wins came in a single series against Australia. In the latter case they were part of 5 wins out of 5 in his Test career, although he was a specialist (?) batsman with a single-figure batting average.

Those with 2 wins out of 2 are mainly stand-ins (Rahane and Jacobs) in recent times. Similarly for those who won their only Tests as captain (eg Shastri, Harvey, WA Brown).

Rahane is the most recent player here.

Only losses (2 or more):

Headed by the Bangladeshi duo of Khaled Mashud (12) and Khaled Mahmud (9) in their team’s early years.

However, there is also KC Brathwaite (5) from WI in recent years along with Porterfield who has led Ireland in all 3 of its Tests. DK Gaekwad, now India’s oldest living player, has 4 losses. (In that series Pankaj Roy captained for 1 Test, which was also lost).

Some other well-known players found here are AJ Lamb, AR Morris, JE Emburey and RS Madugalle.

And FL Reifer, captaining the WI third XI against Bangladesh at home. When he talked of winning the series, local journalists asked “Are you smoking something # which sounds like your name?”

# Reefer, a term for marijuana or ganja

Only draws (complete list):

The list of 21 is headed by Srikkanth (all 4 in a single series against Pakistan in Pakistan). Majid and Saeed also drew all 3 Tests in a single series.

There is no one here since BA Murphy (1 Test in 2001). Well-known players not mentioned so far include DL Murray, G Kirsten, GA Headley, MA Butcher, RR Lindwall and TW Graveney. Practically all of the 1 or 2-Test captains were stand-ins.

Srikkanth and Adhikari are the only ones from India. This did not help Srikkanth much as he was promptly replaced by Azharuddin. And Adhikari stopped a sequence of 3 heavy losses with a draw where his team narrowly escaped defeat.