England v Sri Lanka, 1st Investec Test, Lord's, 3rd day June 14, 2014

Sangakkara breaks jinx, and Lord's run-fests

Stats highlights from the third day at Lord's, which was dominated by Kumar Sangakkara's maiden Test century at the ground

In six Test innings at Lord's before this game, Kumar Sangakkara had managed an aggregate of 140 runs, with a highest of 65. Given that this would almost certainly be his last Test here, he was on course to join a heady list of top-notch overseas batsmen who couldn't solve the Lord's puzzle: among them were Ricky Ponting, Sachin Tendulkar, Brian Lara, Jacques Kallis, VVS Laxman, Aravinda de Silva, Sunil Gavaskar, Javed Miandad, Zaheer Abbas, and several others. (Click here for a full list of overseas players who played at least three Tests at Lord's and didn't score a century.) Some of these players have very poor records at this ground: Miandad scored 63 in six innings, Kallis 54 in five, Ponting 135 in eight, Lara 126 in six, Tendulkar 195 in nine innings, while de Silva managed 188 in seven.

Sangakkara's Lord's stats weren't as dire as some of those numbers, but the average was well below his career average of 58.80 (before this Test). However, coming into this game, Sangakkara had already experienced the feeling of scoring a century here in an international game - he made 112 in the fourth ODI a couple of weeks back - and he started this innings as if he was merely continuing from 112. The first ball he faced was clipped through midwicket for four, and from there he hardly ever looked like getting out. His control percentage over the entire innings was 91.5%, which indicates he hardly played a false stroke. (By way of comparison, Joe Root's control factor was 85% when he scored his double-century, and Kaushal Silva's was 80%.)

Given Sangakkara's form over the last couple of years, it isn't a surprise that he has cashed in on the opportunity to get a big one at Lord's. In the last two years - since June 2012 - Sangakkara has scored 1916 runs in 15 Tests, at an average of 87.09, with eight centuries; the only other batsman averaging more than 70 during this period is Shivnarine Chanderpaul (79.76).

Highest Test averages since June 2012 (Qual: 1000 runs)
Batsman Tests Runs Average 100s/ 50s
Kumar Sangakkara 15 1916 87.09 8/ 7
Shivnarine Chanderpaul 12 1037 79.76 4/ 2
Hashim Amla 17 1750 67.30 7/ 4
Cheteshwar Pujara 16 1543 67.08 6/ 3
AB de Villiers 18 1711 63.37 6/ 6
Michael Clarke 22 2143 61.22 8/ 5
Angelo Mathews 16 1168 58.40 1/ 7
Misbah-ul-Haq 12 1045 58.05 2/ 9

During the course of his magnificent century, Sangakkara shared a century stand with a close friend, and a batsman who has always done well at Lord's. Mahela Jayawardene passed 50 for the fourth time in seven Test innings at Lord's - of which he has converted two into hundreds - and he averages 71.66 here. Only seven overseas batsmen have scored more Test runs at Lord's than Jayawardene.

The 126-run stand between them lifted their partnership aggregate to 6115, which is the third-highest on the all-time Test list, after Dravid-Tendulkar (6920) and Greenidge-Haynes (6482). They went past Hayden-Langer (6081) during the course of this partnership. This was also their 17th century stand, which is second only to 20 by Tendulkar and Dravid.

With Angelo Mathews getting a half-century as well, Sri Lanka have four batsmen who've topped 50 in this innings, a feat they've accomplished only six times in Tests outside Asia. Of these six instances when they've had four or more 50-plus scores in an innings, three have been at Lord's (the others here were in 2002 and 2006) and four in England. Overall, Sri Lanka's batsmen have averaged 37.90 in Lord's Tests over the years, the second-highest among all venues outside Asia where they've played at least two Tests; only in Bulawayo have they averaged more.

With England scoring 575 for 9 and Sri Lanka 415 for 7, this Test match so far has been a run-fest: 944 runs have been scored off the bat for the loss of 16 wickets, an average of 59 runs per wicket. That average will hopefully reduce over the next couple of days, but at the moment, that's the highest average ever in a Lord's Test.

S Rajesh is stats editor of ESPNcricinfo. @rajeshstats

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Pritam on June 16, 2014, 1:04 GMT

    Sangakkara is masterclass. A true champ of Tests who plays in present day. Love to see him bat. Congratulations on the century, its your 36th Test hundred. WOW !!

  • Dummy4 on June 15, 2014, 17:58 GMT

    @Herath-UK. Sanga has scored 4 centuries outside the subcontinent and Zimbabwe in his whole career. This includes his 192 in Bellerive Oval, Hobart, Australia, 119, at The Rose Bowl, SouthHampton, England, 108 in Durban, Kingsmead, South Africa and this century 147 at Lords. Sachin Tendulkar had scored 4 centuries outside the subcontinent, even before he was 20.

  • Dummy4 on June 15, 2014, 14:36 GMT

    Agarkar has scored hundred here if I am not wrong.

  • Dummy4 on June 15, 2014, 14:20 GMT

    @Herath-UK. Sachin Tendulkar had scored 4 centuries ( 1 in England, 2 in Australia and 1 in South Africa) even before he was 20. After that he scored dozens in these countries, whether it was summer, winter or raining. Sangakkara has scored a total of 4 centuries in these countries even after more than 15 years into his career. Where is the comparison?

  • Dummy4 on June 15, 2014, 4:13 GMT

    The match is not safe for SL yet. Another 75 runs or 30 overs batting is required minimum to push the match into safety zone. Thereafter ASAP should keep runs down to not more than 275 runs end of day 4. Then the game can be closer to saving. Right now England still n the game to win.

  • Dummy4 on June 15, 2014, 3:55 GMT

    Sanga..pure class, and most of the time he gets himself out,bowlers are given no chances

  • Dummy4 on June 14, 2014, 22:04 GMT

    sachin scored 00 50s and 00 100s in lords , wooooooooooooooow

  • Andy on June 14, 2014, 21:05 GMT

    It was a good century by Sangakkara but I fail to understand the hype of scoring a 100 at Lords. Its just another cricket ground or rather Mecca of cricket, that's it. Hyping about 100's in a particular ground isn't of my interest. The value of the century, circumstances & playing conditions matter for me, not the number of 100's & how many hundreds at a particular ground.

  • kevin on June 14, 2014, 20:55 GMT

    Sangaaaaaa I doubt he at first but he is pure class take a bow you beauty!

  • Ranil on June 14, 2014, 20:44 GMT

    It is amazing to note that Tendulkar could not score a century in nine attempts further enhancing Sanga's greatness.And mind you that does not come in your stats,Tendulkar's all innigns were with the Sun on his back in the summer whereas Sanga's in early May, even today under overcast conditions.

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