We now look at the fielding figures for Test captains. This includes both keepers and non-keepers.
Most dismissals (35 and above):
Led by Dhoni (211) followed by non-keepers GC Smith (152) and Fleming (132) and current keeper Paine (101)
A Flower and AJ Stewart had captained both as keepers and as non-keepers. Sangakkara and AB de Villiers never captained as a keeper.
Most catches by WK: 187 by Dhoni, almost double the next (97 by Paine).
Most stumpings: 24 by Dhoni, followed by Sherwell (16 from long ago)
Most catches by non-keeper: 152 by GC Smith, 132 by Fleming. The highest for India is 59 by Kohli
Most dismissals in an innings (5 and above):
Rashid Latif and Dhoni have the most dismissals (6).
Among non-keepers, the highest is 5 by VY Richardson, Fleming, GC Smith, Sammy and SPD Smith.
5 is still the world record for catches by a fielder in an innings. It is shared by several others. VY Richardson was the first to achieve this. He is better known as the (maternal) grandfather of the Chappells.
Most dismissals in a match (7 and above):
Here the record is 10 by Sarfaraz Ahmed, who had a relatively short spell as captain.
For non-keepers, it is 7 by Fleming. This was a share in the world record until AM Rahane took 8 catches.
And the most stumpings appear to be 3 by Dhoni in 2010.
Highest dismissal rate (Minimum 20 innings, and 0.65):
Here the results are a little surprising: Paine (2.244) followed by Sarfaraz (2.200) and Alexander. Dhoni is next.
Among fielders, the leader is SPD Smith(1.187) followed by DJG Sammy (1.075). Dravid (0.702) has the most for India.
You may also like to see this, which has the same dateline in May 2021.
And Australia’s captain TD Paine is presently the only Test captain who is a wicketkeeper. His Pakistani counterpart has been dropped since January 2019:
NZ set an unwanted record during this series-their 256 in the first innings of the 3rd Test is the lowest top score by a team in a Test series of 3 or more matches:
The previous record was set by South Africa in their tour of Australia in 1993-94. That was a somewhat less one-sided series than this and was drawn 1-1.
A summary of New Zealand’s totals:
Even the top score of 256 included a 5-run penalty after DA Warner was found to be running on the pitch during Australia’s second innings.
And the World Test Championship saw Australia getting a full 120 points and New Zealand none. Here is the WTC points table on 06 Jan 2020 which included this series as well as the first Test between South Africa vs England, which was won by the former giving them 30 points.
See how Australia is creeping up towards India’s total.
The recently concluded 2-Test series ended with Pakistan winning 1-0 and gaining 80 WTC points and Sri Lanka gaining 20. More importantly, the series showed that international cricket could be held without mishap in Pakistan, even though less than two days play could be completed in the first Test.
Here is a summary of all Tests between the teams:
Pakistan has a slight lead both at home and away. However the teams have been evenly matched 3-3 in the neutral Tests since 2009.
This sums up the Tests between these teams since the ill-fated tour in 2009:
Note that Sri Lanka won 2-0 in the UAE in 2017. Before that Pakistan had won 2-1 in Sri Lanka in 2015.
Coming to individual performances, starting with
Most runs (750 or more):
Mathews and Azhar have the most runs among current players.
The most centuries are 10 by Sangakkara, and the most 50+ scores are 22 also by him.
Highest innings (175 or more):
Nothing from the current series, although there have been many 200s and a 300 in the past.
Best batting averages (min 20 innings, all instances):
Sangakkara has by far the highest average, ahead of second-placed Inzamam and Mathews at no 3. Mathews and Azhar have the highest averages among current players.
Highest strike rates (Min 1000 balls, 50.00 and above):
Here the top position is by Sarfaraz Ahmed who lost his captaincy as well as his place in the side. Next is Dilshan. Karunaratne just makes the cut here, being the only current batsman to be included.
Q de Kock and Mohammad Rizwan became the latest of the relatively few wicket-keepers to have captained in a Test. Here is the full list (as on 15 May 2021):
Relatively few keepers have had extended runs as captains. However the top three on this list are current players, even though MS Dhoni retired from Tests a few years ago and from the captaincy of ODIs and T20Is more recently. Paine recently crossed 100 dismissals as captain and now has 101.
There are some like Gilchrist, Boucher and Jacobs who captained only when the regular captain was temporarily unavailable. Some, like DL Murray and IDS Smith, had long Test careers but captained their side in precisely one Test.
The only current WK-captains are TD Paine (23 Tests as captain) and Q de Kock (4). Sarfaraz Ahmed (13) was replaced after his last Test as captain in January 2019.
It remains to be seen how long Paine continues as captain. But he should be around for a few more Tests.
Dhoni has the most dismissals, followed by Paine and Alexander at a long distance.
Dhoni has the most stumpings (24) and is followed by PM Sherwell with 16.
Lee Germon is a special case as he captained his side in all his 12 Tests. He is the only player from an established side to have captained in a Test on his debut in recent years. The last before him was Tony Lewis in 1972. (Obviously we do not count Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe, Bangladesh, Ireland, Afghanistan and the returning South Africa).
Germon is second on the list of those who captained their side in all their Tests.
The leader in this category was also a keeper:
Long ago PM Sherwell led South Africa in all his 13 Tests, a record for all countries. He was keeper in all these 13 Tests.
A few such as AJ Stewart played numerous Tests as keeper and non-keeper. The above list only includes the Tests where he was keeper. He also opened the batting in some of these matches. He captained England a total of 15 times, 12 as keeper and 3 as non-keeper. BB McCullum captained New Zealand 31 times, but was keeper in only 1 of them.
Other examples include KC Sangakkara (captained in 15 Tests, never as a keeper), AB de Villiers (captained in 3 Tests, none as keeper), R Dravid (25 Tests, none as keeper) and LD Chandimal (captained in 10 Tests, none as keeper). But they have captained in ODIs and T20Is as keepers.
Note that Taibu somehow took one catch as a fielder when he temporarily relinquished his keeping duties. He has also bowled and taken a wicket while a designated keeper.
Here we summarize the batting performance of these captains. The batting average is for those who batted for 20 innings:
The highest batting average for long-term captains is Andy Flower’s 49.28, followed by Mushfiqur and Dhoni in the low 40s. Paine and Sarfaraz are in the middle, while Moin Khan did not play enough to reach 20 innings.
Note the double centuries by Mushfiqur and Dhoni.
The dismissal rate, for those who fielded in at least 20 innings:
While Sarfaraz is no longer captain, his dismissal rate as captain is second only to that of Paine’s. But he has been dropped altogether from the team. Moin Khan and Mushfiqur are at the bottom, while Dhoni is in the middle.
Flower is the only one here who never made a stumping, while Dhoni has the most.
And finally we look at their performance as captains, considering the win/loss ratio. This is for those keepers who captained for at least 10 Tests:
Interesting. We saw that Moin Khan performed worst as a keeper, but he did best as a captain. Similarly for FCM Alexander who did not do too well as a batsman. Next are Dhoni and Paine.
Taibu and Khaled Mashud failed to win a Test as captain, while Germon and Flower were just ahead with one Test win apiece.