August 25 down the years

Symonds smashes 16 sixes

An Australian allrounder lofts his way into recognition

Andrew Symonds hit 20 sixes against Glamorgan in 1995 © Getty Images

In the course of his 254 not out for Gloucestershire against Glamorgan, 20-year-old Andrew Symonds used the short boundaries at Abergavenny to hit 16 sixes, then a world record for a first-class innings. He hit another four sixes in the second innings to make it 20 in the match, also a record at the time.

Birth of the first captain to lead Sri Lanka to victory in a Test. Duleep Mendis was in charge when India were beaten at Colombo's P Sara Stadium in 1985-86. A stocky, big-hitting batsman, he scored 111 and 94 in Sri Lanka's first Test at Lord's in 1984 and was the first batsman to make identical scores of over 100 in the same Test: 105 and 105 in Chennai in 1982-83.

Death of sparkling Australian batsman Stan McCabe, who played two of the most famous innings in Ashes Tests. He hit an explosive 187 not out in Sydney in 1932-33, the ultimate defiance in the face of Bodyline - and his 232 at Trent Bridge in 1938 was so good that Don Bradman insisted the rest of the team go out onto the balcony to watch it. Genial Stan was out to the first ball he faced in club and state cricket. He was dismissed on his second ball in Tests, having hit the first for four.

Is this what being an allrounder means? Playing against New Zealand at The Oval, Ian Botham hit 24 runs off an over by Derek Stirling. This was one run short of the Test record held by Andy Roberts - off Botham himself in 1980-81. The record is now jointly held by Brian Lara, who hit South Africa's Robin Peterson for 28 in an over in Johannesburg in 2003, and George Bailey, who took James Anderson for 28 runs in an over in Perth in 2013.

The 2013 Ashes ended under a cloud. You can substitute that with any other pun you'd like to make on modern cricket's obsession with light. Australia had lost the Ashes 3-0 and on the final day of the series, at The Oval, with play lost due to rain, Michael Clarke tried to set up a contest by declaring at 111 for 6 and setting England a target of 227 in 44 overs. Kevin Pietersen led the chase, with England's fastest Ashes fifty, but with his side needing 21 off four overs, in front of a packed house and a now-anxious Clarke, the umpires went by the rules and took light.

The description "long-serving" might have been invented for Ken Suttle, who was born today. An opening batsman who scored 30,225 first-class runs, he set a record that still stands by playing in 423 consecutive County Championship matches for Sussex from 1954 to 1969.

The birth of the tall and gangling Pakistan fast-medium bowler Sikander Bakht, who could invoke lively pace from most pitches, making his natural outswinger a nightmare for most batsmen. Bakht created headlines after breaking Mike Brearley's arm during a one-day match in Karachi. His finest hour in his 26 Tests came against India in Delhi in 1979-80, when he demolished them on a placid wicket by taking 8 for 69.

Birth of Yorkshire wicketkeeper Arthur Wood, who treated us to one of the great lines in Test cricket. Making his Test debut against Australia at The Oval in 1938, he went in to bat with England 770 for 6. "Aye," quoth he, "I'm always at me best in a crisis." True to his word, he made 53.

It was always likely that Don Bradman would make his last innings at Lord's a memorable one. According to Wisden, he "threw away his wicket" after reaching 150 - then declared the Australians' innings at 610 for 5. They beat the Gentlemen by an innings.

A bomb scare held up play for an hour and a half at Lord's. The delay couldn't save England: the lost time was made up, and their defeat at the hands of West Indies by an innings and 226 runs cost them the series 2-0.

Other birthdays
1906 Jim Smith (England)
1962 Shahid Mahboob (Pakistan)
1965 Sanjeev Sharma (India)
1967 Anina Burger (South Africa)
1969 Vivek Razdan (India)
1976 Javed Qadeer (Pakistan)
1981 Jan-Berrie Burger (Namibia)