India v Sri Lanka, 2nd Test, Kanpur, 4th day

A century of victories

The Kanpur win makes India the sixth team to win 100 Tests

S Rajesh

November 27, 2009

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There was plenty to celebrate for India after their comprehensive victory against Sri Lanka in the second Test in Kanpur. The win is their third-biggest in Tests (among innings wins), and they became the sixth team to record 100 Test wins. They've reached there in 432 matches, with 68 win in 221 home Tests. Their success factor overseas is much lower - 32 wins in 211 matches.

Home-and-away break-up of India's 100 wins
  Tests Won Lost Drawn W-L ratio
Home 221 68 48 104 1.41
Away 211 32 88 91 0.36
Total 432 100 136 195 0.73

Among the six teams, India's journey has taken the most number of Tests. Australia's first 100 wins took them only 199 games, while England got there in 241, but both teams had the advantage of being the early movers in Test cricket. West Indies, South Africa and Pakistan needed more time, but even Pakistan got there in 320 games, 112 fewer than India.

Tests taken for teams to get 100 wins
Australia England West Indies South Africa Pakistan India
199 241 266 310 320 432

The relative slowness of India's journey is largely because they gathered winning momentum only in the 2000s - during the current decade they've won 39 out of 102 matches, a healthy 38%. It's more than double their winning percentage in all the other decades put together - before 2000 India had won 61 out of 330, or 18.48%. The 2000s is also the first time India have won more Tests than they've lost in a decade - their win-loss ratio is 1.44. Their earlier best was 18 wins and 20 losses in the 1990s, and 17-19 in the 1970s.

India's journey to 100 Test wins
Period Tests Won Lost Drawn W-L ratio
1930s & 40s 20 0 11 9 0.00
1950s 44 6 17 21 0.35
1960s 52 9 21 22 0.42
1970s 64 17 19 28 0.89
1980s 81 11 21 48 0.52
1990s 69 18 20 31 0.90
2000s 102 39 27 36 1.44

An even bigger difference is the way India have performed overseas during this period. Before 2000 they had a miserable record of 13 wins in 155 Tests, and a win-loss ratio of 0.18. Since 2000, their record has improved dramatically, with a win-loss ratio of 1. During this period, they've won at least one Test in every overseas country.

India in overseas Tests
Period Tests Won Lost Drawn W-L ratio
Before 2000 155 13 69 73 0.18
In the 2000s 56 19 19 18 1.00

The win is India's sixth at the Green Park in Kanpur, which makes it one of their most successful venues.

For Sri Lanka, on the other hand, it was an entirely forgettable game. They've suffered more comprehensive defeats four times, but this is the worst loss against India. Their record in India drops further, to nine defeats and seven draws in 16 Tests. Australia and South Africa are the other countries in which Sri Lanka are yet to win a Test.

S Rajesh is stats editor of Cricinfo

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S Rajesh Stats editor Every week the Numbers Game takes a look at the story behind the stats, with an original slant on facts and figures. The column is edited by S Rajesh, ESPNcricinfo's stats editor in Bangalore. He did an MBA in marketing, and then worked for a year in advertising, before deciding to chuck it in favour of a job which would combine the pleasures of watching cricket and writing about it. The intense office cricket matches were an added bonus.
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