Clive Inman was born in Ceylon, played for their national team in the 1950s and later moved to England where he played county cricket. Cricinfo and other sources reported his death in England on Dec 7, 2022:
Oddly enough, the obituaries (and even Wikipedia) did not mention his batting record in first-class cricket which was mentioned in older books on cricket trivia, He had scored a fifty off 10 balls in 8 minutes in a county match in 1965. I finally located this from a Sri Lankan newspaper:
Niroshan Dickwella is sometimes the subject of jokes involving his surname, but has attracted the attention of cricket enthusiasts for his puzzling inability to score a century.
Let us first look at:
Most 50+ scores without a century (8 and above):
Dickwella tops this list with 22 fifties, going far ahead of the previous record held by India’s CPS Chauhan which stood since 1981 until the 2020s. MA Starc is the only other current player here, and may yet make a hundred near the end of his Test career.
Also note Shane Warne whom we will meet again in this post.
Now we look at the
Most runs without a century (1500 and above):
Dickwella is 2nd here after Warne. Chauhan is in 3rd place. Other current players here are Southee and Starc.
Next we look at:
Highest batting averages without a century (Minimum 20 innings and 30.00):
This is headed by the lesser-known Asim Kamal, who made 99 on his Test debut. Dickwella is further down this list, in 10th place. His neighbours include current players C Green (Aus), HE vd Dussen (SA) and Faheem Ashraf (Pak). S Gill (Ind) also has an average above 30.
Still, Dickwella has made 96 in a Test. But there is a surprisingly large number of Test players whose top score is between 96 and 99:
9 players have a top score of 99, besides AJ Tudor who was left on 99 not out in a winning 4th-innings chase. Similarly there are many with 96, 97, 98 and 99. There are a few current players here such as MA Starc (again !), van der Dussen, Nauman Ali and newcomer J Overton who made 97 in his debut innings. They are followed by W Sundar and N Dickwella.
But the current players who have not made a Test century yet should not lose heart. Some have made their maiden centuries after a long wait. (This list may not be exhaustive):
The 2-Test series was drawn 1-1. This is the overall summary:
Pakistan leads 21-17 overall. They also lead 9-8 for matches in Sri Lanka as well as 9-6 in Pakistan. However they are tied at 3-3 for matches in neutral countries.
We look at individual performances, starting with
Most runs (750 or more):
The most centuries are 10 by Sangakkara, followed by 8 by Aravinda and Younis Khan.
The most 50+ scores are 22 by Sangakkara, followed by 14 by Younis Khan.
Sangakkara has the most runs, followed by Younis Khan by some distance.
Mathews and Azhar Ali have the most runs among current players.
Highest innings (150 or more):
Matches between these teams have generally been high-scoring, with a triple century by Younis Khan and 250+ by Jayasuriya follwed by several other double centuries. The highest score in this series was 160* by A Shafique (that too in a 4th-innings chase).
The series was drawn 1-1, with sudden collapses on the final day of play in both Tests.
Summary of all Tests between these teams:
While Australia leads 20-5 overall, it leads only by 7-5 in Sri Lanka. And Sri Lanka trails 13-0 in Australia.
Coming to individual performances;
Most runs (500 or more):
Headed by M Hussey with 994 with Ponting and M Jayawardene close behind. Mathews (692) and Chandimal (579) have the most runs among current players.
The most centuries are 5 by Hussey, and the most 50+ scores are 8 by Clarke, Ponting and Sangakkara.
Highest innings (125 or more):
Chandimal’s 206* in the second Test is the highest for SL v Aus, surpassing Sangakkara’s 192 in Aus in 2007 and Kusal Mendis’s 176 in SL in 2016. This was a reatively low-scoring series, with the only other score of note being 145* by SPD Smith.
Highest batting averages (Minimum 20 innings, all instances):
Headed by Ponting and Sangakkara. The current players have not played enough.
Highest strike rates (Minimum 1000 balls faced and 40.00):
Headed by ST Jayasuriya and Hayden. Chandimal and Mathews are the only current players here.
Most wickets (12 or more):
Headed by R Herath with 66, followed by the better-known Warne and Muralidaran. Starc and Lyon have the most among current players. Newcomer P Jayasuriya makes this list after only one Test. The most 5-fors are 6 by Herath and Starc, and 10wms 2 by Starc and Warne.
Best innings bowling (6wi or more):
Headed by Kasprowicz and R Herath. P Jayasuriya’s 6-59 and 6-118 came on his debut.
Best match bowling (9wm or more):
Headed by R Herath’s 13-wicket haul in 2016 and P Jayasuriya’s 12 on debut in the second Test here.
That was the best match figures for any Sri Lankan player on debut. This is covered in more detail here:
Best bowling averages (Minimum 2000 balls bowled, all instances):
Headed by Herath and Warne, with Muralidaran just making the cut.
Herath has the best average and strike rate, while Vaas has the best economy rate. Muralidaran was relatively less successful against Australia.