ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 / Features
When Sangakkara was faster than Bradman
Batsmen who reached 2000 runs against a particular team in the fewest Test innings
June 27, 2012
During his unbeaten 199 in Galle, Kumar Sangakkara scored his 2000th Test run against Pakistan in his 26th innings against them. He was the fastest to that landmark against a particular team, quicker than even Don Bradman, who scored his 2000th run against England in his 29th innings. While Bradman had once held the record, it had been taken from him 33 years ago, when Sunil Gavaskar went past 2000 against West Indies in his 28th innings, a feat later matched by Brian Lara against England.
Lara had two record-breaking innings against England, but while his 375 at St John's in 1994 contributed to his first 2000 runs against them, his 400, also at St John's, was in 2004. He had passed the landmark by then. After scoring 798 in the home Tests against England in 1993-94, Lara made 765 in England in the summer of 1995 and had an aggregate of 1563 in 18 innings. He took another ten innings to score the remaining 437.
Gavaskar's contests against West Indies had the ideal start. His 774 runs in the Caribbean in 1970-71 remains the record for the most runs in a series by a debutant. He reached 2000 against West Indies with an average of 83.50 and ten centuries and six fifties.
Bradman wasn't done at 2000 runs against England. He wasn't done at 4000 either. He went on to make 5028 in 63 innings against them, averaging nearly 90. He is by far the highest run-scorer against a particular team.
The only batsman to score 2000 runs in 40 innings or less against two teams is Wally Hammond, who also ensured Bradman would never hold the record for the highest run-scorer in Tests. Hammond passed 2000 in 38 innings against Australia and 40 innings against South Africa.
|KC Sangakkara (SL)||v Pak||2002-2012||14||26||3||2029||230||88.21||8||7|
|SM Gavaskar (India)||v WI||1971-1979||16||28||4||2004||220||83.50||10||6|
|BC Lara (WI)||v Eng||1994-2000||18||28||2||2030||375||78.07||5||9|
|DG Bradman (Aus)||v Eng||1928-1934||17||29||2||2275||334||84.25||8||5|
|IVA Richards (WI)||v Eng||1976-1986||23||30||2||2019||291||72.10||7||7|
|H Sutcliffe (Eng)||v Aus||1924-1932||19||31||3||2191||194||78.25||8||10|
|L Hutton (Eng)||v Aus||1938-1953||19||34||6||2013||364||71.89||5||11|
|DCS Compton (Eng)||v SA||1947-1956||20||34||1||2000||208||60.60||7||9|
|GS Sobers (WI)||v Eng||1954-1966||20||34||3||2032||226||65.54||7||6|
|Javed Miandad (Pak)||v India||1978-1989||25||35||6||2027||280*||69.89||4||14|
|KF Barrington (Eng)||v Aus||1961-1968||21||36||5||2016||256||65.03||5||13|
|SR Tendulkar (India)||v Eng||1990-2008||23||36||3||2031||193||61.54||6||10|
|AR Morris (Aus)||v Eng||1946-1954||21||37||2||2010||206||57.42||8||8|
|JH Kallis (SA)||v WI||1998-2008||21||37||9||2073||177||74.03||7||11|
|RT Ponting (Aus)||v SA||1997-2009||20||37||3||2018||143*||59.35||8||10|
|DPMD Jayawardene (SL)||v Eng||1998-2012||21||37||3||2038||213*||59.94||8||8|
|WR Hammond (Eng)||v Aus||1928-1936||22||38||3||2069||251||59.11||8||3|
|CH Lloyd (WI)||v India||1966-1983||25||39||2||2042||242*||55.18||6||11|
|JB Hobbs (Eng)||v Aus||1908-1925||23||40||3||2151||187||58.13||8||8|
|WR Hammond (Eng)||v SA||1927-1939||23||40||7||2024||181||61.33||5||14|
|AD Nourse (SA)||v Eng||1935-1951||22||40||6||2016||208||59.29||7||9|
|S Chanderpaul (WI)||v India||1994-2011||23||40||9||2038||140||65.74||7||10|
Everton Weekes did not play India enough, otherwise he might have got to 2000 against a team faster than anyone else. Weekes holds the record for hundreds in the most consecutive innings - five - and four of them were in his first four innings against India. He nearly had a fifth but was run out for 90 in Madras in 1949. Weekes went on to bring up his 1000th run against India in his ninth innings. No one has got there quicker.
Viv Richards got to 1000 Test runs against England in ten innings, second fastest after Weekes. He reached 2000 against them in 30 innings, the fifth fastest. In one-day cricket, however, Richards is the tops. He sprinted to 1000 runs against England in only 15 ODI innings, averaging 101 with three hundreds and six half-centuries. The closest anyone has come since is Dean Jones and Gary Kirsten, who needed 19 innings to pass 1000 ODI runs against New Zealand and India.
|IVA Richards (WI)||v Eng||1976-1986||16||15||5||1009||189*||100.90||3||6|
|DM Jones (Aus)||v NZ||1986-1991||19||19||3||1005||107||62.81||2||9|
|G Kirsten (SA)||v India||1995-2000||19||19||2||1030||115*||60.58||3||7|
|BC Lara (WI)||v Aus||1991-1997||21||20||0||1019||139||50.95||2||9|
|SR Tendulkar (India)||v Aus||1991-1998||20||20||0||1119||143||55.95||4||6|
|SC Ganguly (India)||v SL||1996-1999||21||20||1||1001||183||52.68||4||4|
|ML Hayden (Aus)||v India||1994-2007||20||20||1||1040||126||54.73||3||5|
|ST Jayasuriya (SL)||v Ban||1990-2009||21||20||2||1030||130||57.22||4||5|
|IVA Richards (WI)||v Aus||1975-1984||21||21||4||1068||153*||62.82||2||9|
|GA Gooch (Eng)||v Aus||1979-1989||22||21||1||1080||136||54.00||4||7|
|SC Ganguly (India)||v SA||1996-2001||21||21||2||1071||141*||56.36||3||6|
|V Sehwag (India)||v NZ||2001-2009||21||21||1||1028||130||51.40||5||3|
|CG Greenidge (WI)||v India||1979-1989||23||22||3||1101||117||57.94||3||7|
|NJ Astle (NZ)||v India||1995-2002||22||22||0||1029||120||46.77||4||5|
|BC Lara (WI)||v SL||1992-2003||22||22||2||1093||169||54.65||2||9|
|Mohammad Yousuf (Pak)||v Zim||1998-2008||24||22||8||1033||141*||73.78||3||7|
|MS Dhoni (India)||v SL||2005-2009||28||22||6||1029||183*||64.31||1||8|
|JH Kallis (SA)||v NZ||1996-2002||24||23||6||1010||111||59.41||3||7|
|G Kirsten (SA)||v Pak||1994-2002||23||23||5||1042||118*||57.88||2||8|
|Shoaib Malik (Pak)||v India||2000-2006||23||23||1||1039||143||47.22||2||8|
|JH Kallis (SA)||v India||1996-2006||25||23||7||1100||119*||68.75||1||8|
|CH Gayle (WI)||v Zim||2000-2007||23||23||5||1044||153*||58.00||2||8|
|RR Sarwan (WI)||v India||2001-2009||23||23||7||1028||115*||64.25||1||8|
While it's a surprise that Sangakkara is the quickest to 2000 Test runs against a team, it is less so that his former team-mate Muttiah Muralitharan is the quickest to 100 wickets against an opponent. And he's the second quickest as well. When Murali took 7 for 97 in the second innings against South Africa at the P Sara Oval in 2006, he broke a record that had stood since 1895.
Australia's Charlie Turner had gone past 100 wickets in his 17th Test against England, and now Murali had done it in 15 against South Africa. The next year, Murali claimed 9 for 140 in his 14th Test against England, in Kandy, and took his tally against them to 102.
|M Muralitharan (SL)||v Eng||1993-2007||14||5915||1976||102||9/65||16/220||19.37||7||4|
|M Muralitharan (SL)||v SA||1993-2006||15||5908||2311||104||7/84||13/171||22.22||11||4|
|A Kumble (India)||v Aus||1996-2008||16||5529||2831||103||8/141||13/181||27.48||10||2|
|CTB Turner (Aus)||v Eng||1887-1895||17||5179||1670||101||7/43||12/87||16.53||11||2|
|SF Barnes (Eng)||v Aus||1901-1912||17||5377||2166||101||7/60||13/163||21.44||11||1|
|TM Alderman (Aus)||v Eng||1981-1991||17||4717||2117||100||6/47||10/151||21.17||11||1|
|RJ Hadlee (NZ)||v Aus||1973-1986||18||4609||2104||101||9/52||15/123||20.83||10||2|
|MD Marshall (WI)||v Eng||1980-1988||18||4106||1746||100||7/22||10/92||17.46||6||1|
|SK Warne (Aus)||v SA||1993-2002||18||6130||2257||101||7/56||12/128||22.34||6||2|
|WJ O'Reilly (Aus)||v Eng||1932-1938||19||7864||2587||102||7/54||11/129||25.36||8||3|
|AV Bedser (Eng)||v Aus||1946-1953||19||6529||2616||100||7/44||14/99||26.16||7||2|
|DK Lillee (Aus)||v Eng||1971-1979||19||5391||2115||102||6/26||11/165||20.73||7||2|
|CEL Ambrose (WI)||v Eng||1988-1995||19||5075||1931||100||8/45||11/84||19.31||5||2|
|GD McGrath (Aus)||v Eng||1994-2002||19||4499||2087||106||8/38||9/103||19.68||7||0|
|R Peel (Eng)||v Aus||1884-1896||20||5216||1715||101||7/31||11/68||16.98||5||1|
|SK Warne (Aus)||v NZ||1993-2005||20||5770||2511||103||6/31||9/67||24.37||3||0|
|JR Thomson (Aus)||v Eng||1974-1985||21||4951||2418||100||6/46||9/105||24.18||5||0|
|SK Warne (Aus)||v Eng||1993-2001||21||6365||2357||106||8/71||11/110||22.23||6||1|
|GD McGrath (Aus)||v WI||1995-2005||21||4899||1941||101||6/17||10/27||19.21||8||2|
|CV Grimmett (Aus)||v Eng||1925-1934||22||9164||3439||106||6/37||11/82||32.44||11||2|
|IT Botham (Eng)||v Aus||1977-1982||22||5611||2591||100||6/78||11/176||25.91||7||2|
|CEL Ambrose (WI)||v Aus||1988-1996||22||5428||2202||102||7/25||10/120||21.58||6||1|
|M Muralitharan (SL)||v India||1993-2010||22||7020||3425||105||8/87||11/110||32.61||7||2|
Sydney Barnes was quickest to 50 Test wickets against a team - he did it in five matches, taking 61 wickets at an average of 8.95 against South Africa between 1912-13. He finished his career with 83 wickets in seven Tests against them.
In one-day cricket, Waqar Younis needed only 20 matches against New Zealand to take 50 wickets at an average of 12.16. Bangladesh's Abdur Razzak is second quickest, having taken 53 wickets at 15 apiece in his first 24 matches against Zimbabwe.
|Waqar Younis (Pak)||v NZ||1990-1996||20||993||608||50||6/30||12.16||4||2|
|Abdur Razzak (Ban)||v Zim||2005-2010||24||1311||811||53||5/29||15.30||3||3|
|CEL Ambrose (WI)||v Pak||1988-1993||25||1349||878||50||5/53||17.56||1||3|
|GD McGrath (Aus)||v NZ||1993-2005||26||1345||951||50||5/37||19.02||1||2|
|B Lee (Aus)||v Eng||2001-2009||26||1417||1104||50||5/30||22.08||3||1|
|CJ McDermott (Aus)||v WI||1985-1993||27||1356||950||50||4/34||19.00||0||2|
|IR Bishop (WI)||v Pak||1988-1997||27||1443||1103||50||5/25||22.06||2||3|
|SK Warne (Aus)||v WI||1995-2001||27||1504||1045||50||5/33||20.90||1||2|
|B Lee (Aus)||v NZ||2000-2009||27||1321||1062||51||5/42||20.82||1||0|
|Saqlain Mushtaq (Pak)||v India||1996-1999||28||1405||1057||51||5/45||20.72||1||2|
|Waqar Younis (Pak)||v SA||1993-2002||29||1585||1309||52||5/25||25.17||2||2|
|J Srinath (India)||v NZ||1992-2003||29||1538||1021||50||4/23||20.42||0||2|
|D Gough (Eng)||v SA||1994-2005||29||1699||1084||51||4/29||21.25||0||3|
|M Muralitharan (SL)||v Zim||1993-2008||29||1472||828||54||5/23||15.33||2||4|
|B Lee (Aus)||v India||2000-2009||29||1383||1035||50||5/27||20.70||4||0|
|J Garner (WI)||v Aus||1978-1987||30||1630||924||50||5/31||18.48||1||1|
|CEL Ambrose (WI)||v Aus||1988-1996||30||1577||919||50||5/17||18.38||3||0|
|Waqar Younis (Pak)||v SL||1989-1996||30||1463||1085||50||6/26||21.70||2||2|
|Wasim Akram (Pak)||v NZ||1984-2001||30||1421||847||51||5/19||16.60||1||2|
|M Muralitharan (SL)||v NZ||1994-2006||30||1716||1035||50||5/9||20.70||2||0|
If there's a particular List that you would like to see, email us with your comments and suggestions.
Travis Basevi is a cricket statistician and UK Senior Programmer for ESPNcricinfo and other ESPN sports websites. George Binoy is an Assistant Editor at ESPNcricinfoFeeds: George Binoy
© ESPN EMEA Ltd.
The Cricket Monthly: The greatest allrounder cricket ever forgot: South Africa's Aubrey Faulkner
TCM February issue
Sanjay Manjrekar: The old precept of bowling on a good length doesn't work when pitches are flat and batsmen fearless
England's other big-hitting wicketkeeper-batsman talks about his experiences at the PSL and being picked up by Daredevils
Numbers Don't Lie: Brendon McCullum was a match-turner as batsman and captain in limited-overs cricket
A quick look at all the uncapped India players who fetched the top bids at the IPL 2016 auction
There are some big names going under the hammer on Saturday. Who will get the largest paycheck? Vote now
Cricket's future lies with the young, but that future is an uncertain one, as the latest furore over mankading shows
Why do those who quote the spirit of cricket tend to do so only when it's convenient?