Australia v South Africa, 1st Test, Brisbane, 4th day

Clarke dominates run fest at the Gabba

Stats highlights from day four of the first Test in Brisbane

Madhusudhan Ramakrishnan

November 12, 2012

Comments: 43 | Text size: A | A

Michael Clarke calls out loud after playing a defensive shot, Australia v South Africa, 1st Test, 3rd day, Brisbane, November 11, 2012
Michael Clarke became only the third batsman after Don Bradman and Ricky Ponting to register three 200-plus scores in a single year © Getty Images
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On another day dominated by the bat, centuries from Michael Clarke and Ed Cowan enabled Australia to take the lead. Here are some top numbers from a day the South African bowlers would like to forget in a hurry.

  • Clarke became only the third batsman after Don Bradman and Ricky Ponting to register three 200-plus scores in a calendar year. Clarke had scored 329* and 210 in the Sydney and Adelaide Tests against India earlier in the year. Clarke's double-century is only the fifth one scored in Brisbane. Four of the five double-centuries in Brisbane have been scored by Australian batsmen. The last one, however, was scored by Greg Chappell in 1981.
  • Among captains who have scored at least 800 runs in a calendar year, Clarke has the second-highest average (111.11). Don Bradman is on top with an average of 113.88 in 1948. Clarke's aggregate of 1000 runs in seven Tests is by far the highest in 2012. Hashim Amla is second with 791 runs in eight Tests.
  • Clarke's century is his fourth in Brisbane and takes him joint-second with Matthew Hayden and Ricky Ponting on the list of batsmen with the most centuries at the Gabba. Greg Chappell is on top with five centuries. Clarke's average of 109.37 is second only to Chappell's 111.77 among batsmen who have scored 500-plus runs in Brisbane.
  • Clarke is now joint-sixth on the list of Australian batsmen with the most 150-plus scores in Tests (7). Bradman is on top with 18 150-plus scores followed by Ricky Ponting (15). Clarke's 218 is his highest score against South Africa surpassing his previous best of 151 in the first Test in Cape Town last year.
  • The 259-run stand between Ed Cowan and Clarke is the fifth-highest partnership for Australia against South Africa and the third-highest since South Africa's readmission. The partnership is also seventh on the list of highest fourth-wicket stands for Australia and the sixth-highest in Brisbane.
  • Cowan's century is his first in Tests. His previous best was 74 against India in Perth in January 2012. Cowan's hundred is also the first by an Australian opening batsman in Brisbane since Simon Katich's 131 in 2008. Cowan scored 71 of his 136 runs from backfoot shots hitting nine fours in the process. In contrast, Clarke scored 72 of his 218 runs from backfoot shots.
  • For the first time ever in Australia-South Africa Tests, four centuries were scored in the team first innings (1st and 2nd innings of the match). There have been nine other occasions when there have been three centuries scored in the team first innings.
  • The only wicket South Africa managed in the day was that of Cowan, who was run out. The last two occasions when South Africa had gone without a single wicket in a day's play came against Sri Lanka (2006 at the SSC) and against Australia (1997 in Johannesburg).
  • It is the fourth time overall and the second time this year (after the Sydney Test against India) that Australia have had two 150-plus stands for the fourth and fifth wickets.
  • The partnership run-rate of 5.17 is the second-highest for Australia in Tests against South Africa since 1992. The highest is 5.46 during the 182-run stand between Hayden and Ponting in Sydney in 2006 (150-plus stands only).

Madhusudhan Ramakrishnan is a sub-editor (stats) at ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by navinrajpal on (November 13, 2012, 4:16 GMT)

I watched both teams bowl closely during the first innings. Oz were bowling fast & furious & SA were simply bowling rubbish. Siddle, Hilfenhaus, Pattinson were very accurate with their off-stump lines & Amla/Kallis had to bat really hard to score their respective centuries. On the other hand, Morkel doesn't really capitalize on his height & was instrumental in releasing the pressure created by Steyn/Philander who weren't @ their best. The over in which Clarke hit him for three boundaries when they were recovering from 40/3 changed the momentum. Lyon looks average & without the pace trio it would be difficult for him to hold himself in the team. Amla is so strong with his defence (like Dravid) but attacks better.

Posted by   on (November 13, 2012, 0:52 GMT)

@ EverybodylovesSachin are you suggesting Clarke's 300 was on a batting paradise? I'm not sure if you've ever seen the SCG....but batting paradise it is not

Posted by Meety on (November 12, 2012, 23:50 GMT)

@maddy20 on (November 12 2012, 17:00 PM GMT) - yet Patto bowled @ 144kph! BTW, Morkel bowled one ball @ 147kph! Wake up!

Posted by one-eyed-but-keepinitreal on (November 12, 2012, 23:48 GMT)

Fifteen out of the nineteen matches that Michael Clarke has scored centuries in, prior to the current, have been decided. Australia have won thirteen and lost two (including the match where the next two completed innings did not surpass his first innings total). How many of the true flat track bullies can say that 79% of their centuries were in a decided test match? Should drop to a paltry 75% today...but?

Posted by Sanj747 on (November 12, 2012, 23:22 GMT)

Funny how all the Indian supporters come into play here. Sad some can't appreciate good cricket and want to bring in irrerelevant stats.

Posted by crh8971 on (November 12, 2012, 22:36 GMT)

@Everybodylovessachin - and exactly how many test double centuries have been made on "bowlers paradise" pitches? Both the doubles against India resulted in wins to Australia so at least one group of bowlers found the pitches good to bowl on.

Posted by EverybodylovesSachin on (November 12, 2012, 22:18 GMT)

Every high score in test cricket got to be on batting paradise. Sad part of Cricket..when you look at the physics of the game..Now batting paradise may hold some bounce also.. Bounce does not mean it is difficult to bat on...It is much more easier to pull and hook and hit the ball over the fielder.

Posted by __PK on (November 12, 2012, 21:16 GMT)

There's nothing wrong with this track. The wicket block has been producing typical Gabba lively tracks all season so far - and has been criticised for it. This deck WAS spicy on day 1, but the Aus bowlers just didn't get it right. Day 2 was a washout, which refreshed the pitch so that Day 3 was effectively Day 1 or 2 again, and eventually the bowlers got it right, so we saw 11 wickets fall. Day 4 becomes Day 2 or 3 when the Gabba is always at its best for batting. Day 5 will be Day 3 or 4 so we should still see good batting conditions, maybe a little help for the spinners. It's rubbish to say Aus grounds are engineered against the opponents. If that was true we'd have played India at the Gabba and Hobart earlier in the year and SA at the SCG and MCG this season. We certainly wouldn't have given the Gabba and Hobart to NZ who love seaming conditions last season, nor would we have played India at the SCG. Australia traditionally selects venues which suits the visitors.

Posted by Raiden on (November 12, 2012, 20:06 GMT)

To all Indian supporters: Australia and South Africa are playing this series. Please stay out of it. Clarke's achievement has to be hailed no matter who he played against, scoring a triple hundred and two double hundreds in a year is not something that is done very often

Posted by Chan1966 on (November 12, 2012, 18:43 GMT)

Whatever the condition of the pitch, he scored his double hundred against the world number one side. At the moment SA is the best team in the world, no doubt. But Australia can overcome them. In the last two years or so we had a very poor number one sides of the world. But Clive Lloyd's and Viv Richards' West Indian teams were the true world beaters. They thrash Australia in Australia (1979/80,/1981/1984 &1988) England in England (1976/1980/1984/1988 - without losing a single match), India in India (1983 - they won 3/0 in tests and 5/0 in ODI's) and Pakistan in Pakistan (1980 - Pak led by Imran). No other team had achieved such a feat in the recent past (In the last 40 years). But I can still remember Tony Greig's English team defeated India in the sub continent in the 1977 series. John Lever was the architect of the first test victory)

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