With the summer season of 2020 out of the way, we review Test captaincies up to Aug 31, 2020:
Headed by Tendulkar with 200. Anderson (156) and Broad (143) are unlikely to come near, although they may challenge Cook for the England record of 161.
Most Tests as captain:
GC Smith leads with 108. Kohli (55) will probably overtake Dhoni (60) but is unlikely to come near GC Smith. Root (44) is probably the only other captain who will move up a bit-but may not pass Cook’s England record of 59.
Most Tests not as captain:
Tendulkar again, with Anderson and Broad some distance behind.
The next logical question is to find who has played the
Most Tests without ever being captain:
The record was held by Warne for a long time. He has now been overtaken by Anderson with Broad just behind him. Other potential candidates like Ishant Sharma and Lyon are unlikely to come near. VVS Laxman has the India record of 134.
Those who were captains in all their Tests:
Many of them were from the glorious days of amateurs ruling the roost, although that does not apply to the first few names here. Germon and Poterfield are the only ones from recent times.
Also note the 5 who captained their sides in their only Tests. CA Smith was the only to have won their Test, and ultimately settled in Hollywood.
Also note the father-son duo of FT Mann and FG Mann.
Vizianagram or Vizzy joins his amateur English friends here.
Before we get into bowling records in England-Pakistan Tests, we note the achievement of JM Anderson who became the first pace bowler to reach 600 wickets. Comparing with others who have crossed 500 wickets:
Here we have disregarded the ICC XI vs Aus Test, so the figures for Murali and Warne are less than what you will see in some sources.
Note that Broad with 514 has some chance of crossing 600.
Continuing with the main Bowling records:
Most wickets (25 or more):
Anderson and Broad follow Abdul Qadir, and may cross his record. Yasir Shah and Mohammad Amir are a little below.
Qadir has the most 5wi (8) as well as the most 10wm (4). No one else has more than one 10wm. Imran and Underwood have 4 5wis.
Best innings bowling (includes all cases of 7wi):
Qadir is the only one with 9wi. Botham’s 8-34 came along with a century.
Anderson also appears here.
Best match bowling (includes all cases of 10wm):
This time Underwood has the best figures followed by Qadir. Anderson, Woakes and Yasir Shah are also here.
Best bowling average (minimum 2000 balls, all cases):
Anderson leads this table with Broad somewhat below.
Mohammad Amir and Yasir Shah are also here.
The best economy rates are by Iqbal Qasim and DA Allen.
The best strike rates are by Waqar Younis and Anderson.
Now for fielding records:
Most dismissals (20 or more):
Led by Wasim Bari and followed by Kamran Akmal.
Wasim Bari and Sarfaraz Ahmed have the most stumpings (4).
Root has the most catches by a non-keeper (22) although 3 others have 20.
Most dismissals in an innings (5 or more):
A few non-keepers have 4 catches in an innings.
Most dismissals in an match (7 or more):
Bari and Akmal again lead this. The best by non-keepers are 6 by Greig and Hick.
Most of those who follow Test cricket know about the double of a century and 5wi in a match. This has been done 32 times, with the last occasion being the present WI player Roston Chase in 2016.
The lesser-known double is that of 50 and 10wm, which is slightly rarer and has been done on 30 occasions. Stuart Broad joined this list in the 3rd Test against West Indies in 2020.
This seems to be a little harder to achieve compared to the other double. Sir Richard Hadlee is the only one to do it 3 times and Shakib Al Hasan the only one to do it twice. Kapil, Botham and Imran duly appear here. “Sir” Jadeja is the only other player from India here.
In a mirror of Bruce Taylor’s 100 + 5wi against India on his debut in 1965, only one player John Lever has managed 50 + 10 wm also against India in 1976. Oddly enough S Venkataraghavan was in India’s team on both occasions.
There are some odd cases here involving players who were not generally considered all-rounders, such as Qadir, Border, Bevan and Steyn. And others who had short careers such as Lever, Nash and Craig. But most of the big names of the past few decades are there.
The elite group with a century and 10-for includes Botham, Imran, Shakib and honorary member Davidson with 100 runs and 10-for.
Broad achieved this in the nick of time, taking the last wicket of the match to complete his tenner.
In the 5th T20I in the recently concluded India-New Zealand series, Seifert (17) and Ross Taylor (17 including a no-ball) took 34 runs off an over from Shivam Dube. That was his first and only over in the innings. It was the second highest in T20Is, surpassed only by Yuvraj Singh’s 6*6 off Stuart Broad in the 2007 world championship.
Previously the worst such misfortune to an Indian bowler was Evan Lewis taking 32 (including a wide) off another Stuart (Binny) in 2016. Suresh Raina had conceded 26 against South Africans Ontong and Albie Morkel in 2012.
New Zealand won the 2-Test series 1-0. as they had in 2017-2018. This series was not part of the World Test Championship.
The overall summary of Tests between these countries:
New Zealand is slowly beginning to show better performances at home.
Looking at individual performances:
Most Runs (1000 and above):
MD Crowe has the most centuries (5) while several others have 4. The most scores of 50+ are 11 by JG Wright while several other have 10. R Taylor (1145) has the most runs among current players.
Highest innings (150 and above):
Root and Watling scored double centuries in this series.
Best batting average (Min 20 innings, all instances):
Cowdrey has the highest average here. Root and Taylor have the highest averages among current players. Williamson has not played enough against England.
Best strike rate (Min 1000 balls faced, 45.00):
McCullum leads by a large margin. Taylor, Root and Watling represent current players.
Most wickets (25 and more):
Sir Richard leads by a large margin, although current player Broad is next. Southee, Boult and Wagner are also moving up.
Best innings bowling (includes all instances of 7wi):
No instances from the last few years.
Best match bowling (includes all instances of 10wm):
Note the duopoly at the top from Underwood and Lock who have the 5 best performances. Nothing from recent years.
Best bowling average (Min 2000 balls bowled, all instances):
Underwood and Willis have the best bowling averages, Underwood and Illingworth the best economy while Underwood and Anderson have the best strike rates. Boult and Wagner have the best averages among current players.
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:
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.
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.
Now imagine the concept of a Dishonour Board. For batting, this would be anyone who gets a genuine pair (dismissed for a duck in both innings) at Lord’s:
Dismissed for a duck at Lord’s:
India contributed Murali Vijay and Kuldeep Yadav in the 2018 Test. Earlier that season, Stuart Broad was dismissed for a silver pair (out second ball in each innings). No instance could be found of a golden pair (first ball in each innings) and bronze pair (third ball).
As you may guess, most of these players are not specialist batsmen (though Prior, Stokes and Murali Vijay are exceptions).
Botham’s pair in 1981 was the final trigger to his dismissal from the captaincy, when England trailed 0-1 in the second Test of an Ashes series. Brearley came back as captain, and the rest was history as England won three Tests in a row to win 3-1.
Now we look at those who bowled in each innings of a match and had match figures of 0-100 or worse:
The most runs conceded are 143 by West Indian Fidel Edwards and 142 by Australian AC Agar. The only instance from India is that of Shastri, who came up against Gooch’s 333 and 123 in 1990.
And finally, we look at wicket-keepers who did not make a dismissal after fielding in both innings of a match:
Leslie Ames appears here three times in the 1930s. A number of other prominent keepers ranging from Waite to de Villiers are here.
Now someone like Andy Zaltzman can take this up further and put up the Dishonour Boards at Lord’s.
After covering general results and batting figures in the first part, we move on to bowling figures:
Most wickets (25 and above):
Qadir has by far the most wickets and Anderson is unlikely to overtake him. Broad and M. Amir are next among current players
Best innings bowling (including all 7wi and above):
Qadir again at the top. No good performances in the last few years. In fact the 2018 series did not see anyone take a five-for.
Best match bowling (including all 10wm and above):
Underwood and Qadir lead. Nothing from the current series, though Woakes and Yasir Shah are there from 2016.
Bowling averages (Minimum 2000 balls, all instances):
Anderson has by far the best bowling average, followed by his partner Broad. Qadir is somewhat further down. M. Amir is also there from the current series.
The best economy rates are by Iqbal Qasim (1.82) and DA Allen (1.90). The best strike rates are by by Waqar Younis (48.5) and almost the same by Anderson (48.6).
Most dismissals (15 and above):
Wasim Bari has by far the most dismissals, followed unexpectedly by Kamran Akmal. Bari and Sarfraz Ahmed have the most stumpings. Cook, Miandad and Younis Khan share the record for non-keepers.
Best innings fielding (5 or more dismissals):
Sarfraz Ahmed has done this in 2015, 2016 and 2018.
Best match fielding (6 or more dismissals):
Wasim Bari and Kamran Akmal (!) have the record of 8 dismissals. Bairstow had 7 in 2016. Greig and Hick have the most catches (6) by non-keepers.
Best dismissal rate (Minimum 20 innings, 0.500 and above):
Knott and Taylor lead, while Asad Shafiq and Cook have the most among current players. Trescothick and Atherton have the best rates for non-keepers. Sarfraz Ahmed has not played enough.
Overall all-round performances (see criteria):
Botham and Broad lead, followed by Intikhab Alam at a distance. Imran Khan does not seem to have played enough.
All-round match performances (50 and 5wi):
Imran and Botham appear here twice apiece, along with some unexpected appearances by Abdul Qadir and others. Qadir has one of the rare doubles of a fifty and ten-for in a match, while Botham had a century and 8-34.
We now look at the honors boards in England’s dressing room.
A total of 129 centuries were made for England:
The most centuries by an English batsman are 6 each by Gooch and Vaughan.
Centuries in both innings were made by Gooch (333 and 123 v Ind in 1990) and Vaughan (103 and 101* v WI in 2004). Gooch’s 333 is also the only Test triple century at Lord’s. This was also the first instance of a triple century and century in a first-class match. Some years later Sangakkara repeated this in a Test against Bangladesh.
The next highest score for England here is 240 by Hammond v Aus in 1938.
Those who scored a century on debut were Hampshire (107 v WI, 1969), Strauss (112 v NZ, 2004) and Prior (126* v WI, 2007).
Next we look at the 95 five-fors by England:
The most five-forsare 8 by Botham followed by 5 each by Anderson and Trueman. Anderson may yet add to this.
The best performance here is 8-34 by Botham vs Pakistan in 1978, and he also scored a century in that match. Eight-wicket hauls have been made on 4 occasions by Botham (twice), Verity and Underwood.
There are numerous cases of five-fors in both innings. The most recent instance was by Woakes vs Pak in 2016.
It seems to be easier for debutants to take a five-for than to score a century at Lord’s. Here are those who took a five-for on debut:
Cork has the best figures here. No one has taken five-fors in each innings on debut.
And finally, we look at the rather shorter list of the 17 who took 10wm for England:
Underwood is the only one to do so twice.
Verity’s 15-wicket haul is the best here.
Bedser is the only one to do so on debut.
And MM Ali is the only English player to score a fifty and take a ten-for in a Test at Lord’s. He finished the match with a hat-trick.
There are some who have scored both a century and a five-for at Lord’s (though not always in the same Test):
Botham (108 and 8-34 v Pak in 1978) is the only one to do so in the same Test.
Those who scored both a century and ten-for at Lord’s:
None of them scored a century and took 10 wickets in a match (in fact, this has happened only 3 times in all Tests, Botham being the first to do so.) Oddly enough, Allen and Broad scored their only Test centuries at Lord’s.
Finally, in the third part, we will look at the boards for visiting teams.