Review of Tests between India and South Africa-2

Hope you have read part 1:

Continuing with individual performances in

Fielding:

Most dismissals (12 or more):

Boucher leads by a large margin (60) followed by de Villiers (40).

de Villiers has the most catches by a fielder (25) besides 15 catches as a keeper. Next among fielders is Kallis with 23. Note that K Verreyne has 14 in just 2 Tests.

Current players here include Saha, de Kock, Pujara and Rahane.

Most dismissals in an innings (5 or more):

Saha (twice), de Kock and newcomer Verreyne represent the current players.

Most dismissals in a match (7 or more):

Saha has the most, with 5 catches in each innings. Other current players are de Kock, Pant and Verreyne.

Most dismissals per innings (Minimum 20 innings, 0.60 or more):

Boucher leads by a large margin over Dhoni.

Apart from the “hybrid” de Villiers who played both as a keeper and fielder, GC Smith has the highest dismissal rate among fielders.

Rahane is the only current player here.

Finally: All-round performance:

Overall performance (see criteria in table):

Only SM Pollock can be called a genuine all-rounder. Kallis is not here as he bowled less than 2000 balls against India.

Match performance (at least 50+ and 5wi+):

The best of these match performances seems to be by N Boje.

Tail piece:

AK Markram has now played 29 Tests. 18 of them were won by SA and 11 were lost. None were drawn. He thus continues to hold the record for playing in the most Tests without a draw. Next is England’s GA Lohmann of long ago who played in 18 Tests (15 wins, 3 losses).

Review of Tests between India and South Africa-1

The series in 2021-22 resulted in a 2-1 win for South Africa, after India won the first Test. India has failed to win a Test series in SA, although they have won at least one series in all other countries. The best India has done there is an 1-1 draw in 2010-11. The 2021-22 series followed the pattern of 2006-07 where India won the first Test but lost the next two.

Here is an overall summary of Tests between these two countries:

SA leads India 17-15 overall. Both sides appear to have strong home advantages.

We now look at individual performances, starting with

Batting:

Most runs (500 or more):

Led by Tendulkar and Kallis.

These two have the most centuries (7)

Amla, Kallis and Tendulkar have the most 50+ scores (12).

From the above table, the best by current players is 1236 by Kohli, followed by Rahane, Pujara and Elgar with 800+. RG Sharma is further down.

Highest innings (125 or more):

The highest by current players are 254* by Kohli, followed by double centuries by MA Agarwal and RG Sharma. But no one crossed 125 in this series.

Highest batting averages (Minimum 20 innings, all instances):

Kallis has the highest average, followed by Kohli at some distance. Other current players here are Rahane, Elgar and Pujara.

Highest strike rates (Minimum 1000 balls faced, all instances):

Sehwag and Azharuddin lead here. Among current players there are RG Sharma (in 3rd place), Kohli and Rahane. Also note Dravid at the bottom of this list.

Bowling performances:

Most wickets (12 or more):

Led Kumble, followed by Steyn and Srinath at a distance. Ashwin (56) has the most by a current player, followed by Shami, Rabada and Jadeja. Also note M Jansen with 19 in his debut series.

The most 5-fors are 5 by Steyn and Ashwin. No one has taken more than one 10-for.

Best innings bowling (includes all 6wi and more):

The best performance was an 8-for by Klusener on his debut.

Current players here include SN Thakur, Ashwin and Ngidi.

Thakur’s 7-61 in this series is the best for India against SA, surpassing the earlier record of 7-66 by Ashwin (Nagpur, 2015) and 7-120 by Harbhajan (Cape Town, 2011) which was India’s best in SA.

Best match performances (includes all 8wm and more):

Led by Ashwin and Donald with 12-fors, and 10-fors by Steyn, Pollock and V Prasad.

Current players here include Ashwin, Jadeja and Ngidi.

Best bowling averages (Minimum 2000 balls bowled, all instances):

Headed by Donald and Jadeja (!) Current players here include Jadeja, Shami, Ashwin and Rabada.

The best economy rates are by Pollock and Jadeja.

The best strike rates are by Steyn and Shami.

To be continued.

Cape Town in the 4th innings (Revised on Jan 12, 2022)

As there is a lot of interest in my earlier post from 2020, I am giving a list of all 4th-innings scores of 150 and above at Cape Town for all Test teams. This may help you to assess the chances of SA (and India) in the ongoing Test.

All scores of 150 and above in the 4th innings of Tests at Cape Town:

From this table, we can see that:

The highest winning score is 334/6 by Australia in 2002.

The highest drawn score is 354/5 (chasing 441) by the West Indies in 2004.

The highest losing score is 335 (chasing 408) by South Africa against New Zealand in 1962.

Summary of Test matches in 2021: Debutants : Part 6

Here we cover the better performances by those who made their debut in the calendar year 2021.

Batting:

40 or more runs in an innings:

Note the double centuries by KR Mayers and DP Conway. Only 7 players have made a double century on debut.

Mayers and Bonner combined to enable the West Indies to chase down 395 in the last innings:

https://www.espncricinfo.com/series/west-indies-in-bdesh-2020-21-1244017/bangladesh-vs-west-indies-1st-test-1244025/full-scorecard

SS Iyer and Abdullah Shafique scored 50+ in both innings.

80 or more runs in a match:

Bowling:

4 or more wickets in an innings:

Headed by SM Boland’s 6-7 at the end of the year. There are others who have made 7wi and 8wi on debut, but these would probably be the most influential bowling figures by a debutant-as it reduced England to 68 all out and secured the Ashes for Australia.

7 or more wickets in a match:

P Jayawickrama took 11 wickets on debut, while Boland had the best figures of those who took 7 wickets.

Fielding:

2 or more dismissals in an innings:

Note AT Carey’s 5 and 3 in the same match.

3 or more dismissals in a match.

AT Carey took 8 dismissals, equalling the record by HB Taber and CMW Read.

However, Carey is the only one to take 8 catches on debut, as the others had 7 catches and a stumping.

Several fielders (including Boland again!) took 3 catches in a match.

All-round performance:

50 runs and 4 wickets in match:

Only one instance, and he has not played for the past few months.

50 and 3 dismissals in match:

Note that Abdullah Shafique made two fifties in the match, besides taking 3 catches.

Notes from the Johannesburg Test

This was the 6th Test played by India at this venue and their first defeat:

It is however difficult for South Africa and other teams to chase 200 or even 150 at this venue. Their 243/3 is their highest winning chase here. These are the only times it has happened:

Winning chases over 150 at Johannesburg:

The SA captain Dean Elgar was left on 96 not out at the end. There are several instances of being stranded in the 90s in a winning chase:

While there is only one 99 here, there are 98s by several including SC Ganguly and other famous names such as Hutton, GS Chappell and Atherton.

AL Wadekar was another Indian player who got up to the 90s when the target was reached.

Onwards to Cape Town:

India has never won at this venue. But if one fortress fell at Johannesburg, perhaps another can fall at Cape Town:

India vs SA at Cape Town:

India has 2 draws and 3 losses here.

Shardul Thakur’s record:

Here are the best innings bowling performances in India-South Africa Tests:

SN Thakur’s 7-61 in SA’s first innings was the best for India v SA. The previous best was 7-66 by R Ashwin at Nagpur in 2015. The previous best for India v SA in SA was 7-120 by Harbhajan Singh at Cape Town in 2011.

His match bowling figures of 8-108 were not so impressive.

Markram again

AK Markram has played 28 Tests. 17 were won by SA, 11 lost and none drawn.

His 28 Tests are the most played by anyone who has not seen a draw. Next is GA Lohmann from 19th-century England, whose 18 Tests included 15 wins and 3 losses.

Summary of Test matches in 2021: All-round performances: Part 5

Hope you have seen the earlier sections such as https://abn397.wordpress.com/2022/01/06/summary-of-test-matches-in-2021-fielding-records-part-4/

Now we look at all-round performances in the calendar year 2021.

All-round performances for the year: No one has met the minimum requirements of 20 innings batted and 2000 balls bowled.

All-round match performances in a match: At least one fifty+ and one 5+wi.

Here we get:

Only two instances. Ashwin with a century and 5wi has clearly done better than Nauman Ali.

In the last of these studies, we will look at the best performances of debutants in 2021.

Summary of Test matches in 2021: Fielding records : Part 4

Hope you have read the earlier summaries such as https://abn397.wordpress.com/2022/01/04/summary-of-test-matches-in-2021-bowling-records-part-3/

We now continue with Fielding records in Tests during the calendar year 2021.

Most dismissals (15 or more):

The most dismissals were 42 by JC Buttler, followed by 39 by RR Pant. The most catches by a keeper were 41, also by Buttler. The most stumpings were 6 by RR Pant. The most catches by a fielder were 21 by JE Root.

Most dismissals in an innings (5 and above):

This list includes 4 keepers (including AT Carey on debut) as well as a fielder (Thirimanne). Thirimanne became one of several fielders to take 5 catches in an innings. Unusually, all these catches came off a single bowler (L. Embuldeniya). This is probably a record in all Tests.

Most dismissals in a match (6 and above):

8 dismissals were made by several keepers, including AT Carey on debut. Fielders MM Ali and SPD Smith took 6 catches each.

Highest dismissal rate (Minimum 20 innings, 0.5) :

RR Pant has by far the best dismissal rate of 1.695. No other keeper qualifies here. Among the fielders, JE Root is next with 0.750, followed by V Kohli and RG Sharma.

To be continued.

Summary of Test matches in 2021: Bowling records : Part 3

Hope you have read the earlier parts, such as :https://abn397.wordpress.com/2022/01/02/summary-of-test-matches-in-2021-batting-records-part-2/

We now proceed to study the Test bowling performances during the calendar year 2021.

Most wickets (minimum 20):

Led by R Ashwin, with SS Afridi a little behind.

The most 5wis are 5 by Hasan Ali and AR Patel.

No one has taken more than one 10wm.

A number of newcomers did well, such as AR Patel and M Siraj (Ind), OE Robinson (Eng) and RTM Mendis (SL).

Best innings bowling (including all 6wi and above):

Pride of place would go to AY Patel’s 10-119 although his team still lost. This was the 3rd 10wi in all Tests, and the best innings bowling for New Zealand. SM Boland’s 6-7 was one of the best figures on debut. JE Root’s occasional bowling got him 5-8.

Best match bowling (including all 9wm and above):

AY Patel and Sajid Khan again have the top 2 positions. And AR Patel’s 11-70 is the best match bowling in a day-night match.

Bowling averages (Minimum 2000 balls bowled):

Only 3 bowlers make the cutoff of 2000 balls. R Ashwin has the best average and strike rate, while JM Anderson has the best economy rate.

To be continued:

Summary of Test matches in 2021: Batting records : Part 2

We now look at individual Batting performances in 2021:

Most runs (500 or more):

Root leads by a large margin with 1708 runs.

Next are RG Sharma (906) and FDM Karunaratne (902).

Pant (748) and Pujara (702) are next. Kohli (536) is further down.

The most centuries were 6 by Root and 4 by Karunaratne.

Similarly, the most 50+ scores were 10 by Root and 7 by Karunaratne.

Back to Root: His 1708 is the 3rd highest in all years until now, and the best for England.

1500 or more runs in a calendar year:

The previous record for England was 1481 by MP Vaughan in 2002.

Highest innings scores (125 or more):

Several double centuries, including two by debutants (210* by KR Mayers and 200 by DP Conway). And two by Root, along with two 180s as well.

Conway’s 200 is the highest by anyone making his debut, that match being at Lord’s. The previous record was 136 by SC Ganguly in 1996.

The best for India is 161 by RG Sharma, followed by 150 by MA Agarwal.

Highest batting averages (Minimum 20 innings, all instances):

Led by Root (61.00). Next are RG Sharma (47.68) and RR Pant (39.36). Pujara and Rahane are further down, and JM Anderson with an average of 4.10 is at the bottom.

Finally, Strike Rates: (Minimum 1000 balls faced, SR 40 or more):

Led by Pant (67.44) and followed by newcomer KR Mayers (61.98).

Other Indian players here include RG Sharma, V Kohli, KL Rahul and AM Rahane.

Root is in 4th place here, after Pant, Mayers and Liton Das.

To be continued with bowling statistics in Part 3.

Summary of Test matches in 2021: Overall summary: Part 1

Here we look at the performance of teams in the calendar year 2021:

There are various ways of ranking. We start with this one, which is transparent in calculation and where data is correct as on 31 Dec.

Ranked by win-loss ratio:

Pakistan is first, followed by Australia and New Zealand tied for second. Next is India, with Bangladesh predictably at the bottom with Zimbabwe just above.

A more sophisticated method is the ICC ranking table. See this live link:

https://www.icc-cricket.com/rankings/mens/team-rankings/test

When I checked this on Jan 1, 2022 it had been updated only up to Dec 8, 2021.

Here the rankings were:

  1. India (124)
  2. New Zealand (121)
  3. Australia (108)
  4. England (107)

Here the rankings take into account a period of more than 1 year.

Zimbabwe is at the bottom and Bangladesh just above it.

It is difficult to say what the latest rankings would be.

And finally, the points table for the World Test Championship (2021-23):

The live link: https://www.espncricinfo.com/series/icc-world-test-championship-2021-2023-1268315/points-table-standings

On Jan 1, 2022 the ranks (according to percentage of points) were listed as:

  1. Australia and Sri Lanka (100)
  2. Pakistan (75)
  3. India (64.28)

Of course, these can change considerably before the final is held in mid-2023.

Tallest and shortest international cricketers

If you google for this question you will get several lists from different sources.

For the tallest, one such list is:

To this list we can list SA’s newcomer Marco Jansen who is 2.06 M (6’9″), which would make him second to Mohammad Irfan (7’1″), who is the only Test player to top 7 feet.

While many of these tall men (almost exclusively fast bowlers, except the spinner Suleiman Benn) had long and successful careers, some did not (e.g. Mohammad Irfan, Boyd Rankin, Chris Tremlett). However, Irfan is still playing domestic cricket when he is almost 40:

https://www.espncricinfo.com/player/mohammad-irfan-429981

And here is the listing for Marco Jansen, now playing his first Test:

https://www.espncricinfo.com/player/marco-jansen-696401

Now for the shortest Test players:

https://www.kreedon.com/shortest-cricketer/

This lists the shortest Test player as Kruger van Wyk (born in SA, played Tests for New Zealand). At 4’9″ (1.45 M), he is clearly the shortest Test player (and perhaps the shortest adult cricketer of standard). He played his 9 Tests as recently as 2012, but there was not much comment on his height at that time.

https://www.espncricinfo.com/player/kruger-van-wyk-47780

The next shortest Test player was, like van Wyk, a wicketkeeper. WL “Tich” Cornford, considered to be 5 feet tall, played 4 Tests for England in 1930:

https://www.espncricinfo.com/player/tich-cornford-10817

There are several short players among the all-time greats, such as Gavaskar, Tendulkar and Viswanath besides other fairly well-known players such as Kallicharan, Taibu and Mushfiqur Rahim.

This we have identified most of the tallest Test players (including one over 7 feet) and the shortest (5 ft and 4’9″).

Sometimes we get to see the very tall and the very short in the same match. At the time of writing we have Mushfiqur Rahim (1.60 M) playing against Kyle Jamieson (2.03) or Temba Bavuma (1.62) in the same team as Marco Jansen (2.06).

Note: There is no authentic list for these figures. Various websites may mention different names and heights.

A century of not-out innings

While England’s chances of winning the current Ashes series look increasingly bleak, one of their players achieved a landmark in becoming the first to make 100 not-out innings in Tests. Who else but the Burnley Lara?

https://www.espncricinfo.com/player/james-anderson-8608

Here we see the list of those players who have made the most not-out innings in Tests:

(This does not include the Aus vs ICC XI Test of 2005, which makes a minor difference to the figures for some players such as Muraltharan and Kallis.)

Anderson is followed by CA Walsh (61) and several others in the 50s. The best for India is 47 by I Sharma

While Anderson has usually batted at No 11, he has an 81 and over 1200 runs. The first 6 in this list are tailenders, while the first regular batsman is S Chanderpaul followed by SR Waugh and AR Border with other tailenders intervening.

This is a true test of longevity for Anderson. And Lancashire players were known for their tenacity.