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Batsmen who scored centuries in Test innings where several wickets had fallen for very little
November 2, 2011
After Brendan Taylor's performances in the one-day internationals against New Zealand, in our last week's column we produced lists of batsmen who scored centuries when their teams were in severe trouble . There were several outstanding Test centuries as well, made when several wickets had fallen for very little, and this week's column is about them.
Pakistan and India had begun the third Test in Karachi, in January 2006, with the series level 0-0. Within minutes of the start, the visitors had taken a tremendous stride towards winning the series. Irfan Pathan, with three deliveries that swung prodigiously, had claimed a hat-trick in the first over of the game, reducing Pakistan to 0 for 3. They would slip further to 39 for 6. It was from that dire situation that Kamran Akmal engineered one of the great turnarounds in Test cricket.
Akmal defended as confidently as he counterattacked, and motored to a century off 130 deliveries. He could have been stumped on 80, but wasn't, and went on to make 113 off 148 balls, an innings that contained 18 boundaries. His partnerships of 115 with Abdul Razzaq and 82 with Shoaib Akhtar led Pakistan to 245, scored at over four runs per over. India failed to take a first-innings lead, and then Pakistan amassed a mountain of runs in their second innings, after which their bowlers dismissed India cheaply once again to take the series 1-0.
|Kamran Akmal (Pak)||113||0/3||245||1||won||v India||Karachi||Jan 29, 2006||Test 1783|
|MG Burgess (NZ)||111||1/3||360||3||lost||v Pakistan||Lahore||Oct 9, 1976||Test 782|
|HA Gomes (WI)||123||1/3||394||2||drawn||v India||Port of Spain||Mar 11, 1983||Test 952|
|CH Lloyd (WI)||143||1/3||394||2||drawn||v India||Port of Spain||Mar 11, 1983||Test 952|
|Harbhajan Singh (India)||115||2/3||266||3||drawn||v New Zealand||Ahmedabad||Nov 4, 2010||Test 1974|
|KP Pietersen (Eng)||129||4/3||253||1||won||v New Zealand||Napier||Mar 22, 2008||Test 1868|
|Asif Iqbal (Pak)||146||5/3||255||3||lost||v England||The Oval||Aug 24, 1967||Test 623|
|PBH May (Eng)||113||7/3||259||1||lost||v Australia||Melbourne||Dec 31, 1958||Test 462|
|Imran Khan (Pak)||136||7/3||387/9d||3||drawn||v Australia||Adelaide||Jan 19, 1990||Test 1135|
|Wasim Akram (Pak)||123||7/3||387/9d||3||drawn||v Australia||Adelaide||Jan 19, 1990||Test 1135|
Sialkot, September 1995. With the series level 1-1, Sri Lanka had set Pakistan 357 for victory in the deciding Test. Chaminda Vaas and Pramodya Wickramasinghe made short work of the hosts' top order, though, and had them reeling at 13 for 4 and 15 for 5. Moin Khan, Pakistan's wicketkeeper, began to fight and steered his team on 99 for 6 at stumps on the fourth day. He began the final morning on 46 and continued to resist, reaching his second Test century and adding 65 with the last man Aamer Nazir before Pakistan were eventually bowled out for 212. Moin remained unbeaten on 117.
|Moin Khan (Pak)||117*||13/4||212||4||lost||v Sri Lanka||Sialkot||Sep 22, 1995||Test 1306|
|Kamran Akmal (Pak)||113||13/4||245||1||won||v India||Karachi||Jan 29, 2006||Test 1783|
|Harbhajan Singh (India)||115||15/4||266||3||drawn||v New Zealand||Ahmedabad||Nov 4, 2010||Test 1974|
|M Azharuddin (India)||103*||16/4||208||1||lost||v New Zealand||Wellington||Dec 26, 1998||Test 1435|
|P Willey (Eng)||100*||18/4||209/9d||3||drawn||v West Indies||The Oval||Jul 24, 1980||Test 883|
|N Kapil Dev (India)||129||20/4||215||3||lost||v South Africa||Port Elizabeth||Dec 26, 1992||Test 1206|
|Inzamam-ul-Haq (Pak)||135||21/4||288||1||drawn||v West Indies||Georgetown||May 5, 2000||Test 1494|
|G Kirsten (SA)||130||21/4||342||1||won||v England||Leeds||Aug 21, 2003||Test 1656|
|Imran Khan (Pak)||136||22/4||387/9d||3||drawn||v Australia||Adelaide||Jan 19, 1990||Test 1135|
|Wasim Akram (Pak)||123||22/4||387/9d||3||drawn||v Australia||Adelaide||Jan 19, 1990||Test 1135|
Already 0-1 down in the three-Test series against Sri Lanka in 2000, South Africa made a disastrous start to the second match in Kandy. They were asked to bat by Sanath Jayasuriya on a pitch that was prepared for turn but had sweated under covers because of heavy rain in the lead-up to the game. In a little over an hour, South Africa had been reduced to 34 for 5. Lance Klusener and Mark Boucher led the riposte. They added 124 runs for the sixth wicket before Boucher was run out for 60, after which two wickets fell quickly to leave South Africa on 173 for 8. Klusener managed to put on 80 with the last two batsmen, guiding South Africa to 253. The Test had a thrilling conclusion on the fourth day, with Sri Lanka collapsing from 130 for 4 to 169 all out to lose by seven runs.
|Moin Khan (Pak)||117*||15/5||212||4||lost||v Sri Lanka||Sialkot||Sep 22, 1995||Test 1306|
|Harbhajan Singh (India)||115||15/5||266||3||drawn||v New Zealand||Ahmedabad||Nov 4, 2010||Test 1974|
|Asif Iqbal (Pak)||146||26/5||255||3||lost||v England||The Oval||Aug 24, 1967||Test 623|
|N Kapil Dev (India)||129||27/5||215||3||lost||v South Africa||Port Elizabeth||Dec 26, 1992||Test 1206|
|C Hill (Aus)||188||32/5||323||1||won||v England||Melbourne||Jan 29, 1898||Test 56|
|L Klusener (SA)||118*||34/5||253||1||won||v Sri Lanka||Kandy||Jul 30, 2000||Test 1505|
|Mohammad Yousuf (Pak)||115||37/5||253||1||drawn||v West Indies||Bridgetown||May 18, 2000||Test 1496|
|Kamran Akmal (Pak)||113||37/5||245||1||won||v India||Karachi||Jan 29, 2006||Test 1783|
|RC Russell (Eng)||128*||38/5||264||3||lost||v Australia||Manchester||Jul 27, 1989||Test 1124|
|Inzamam-ul-Haq (Pak)||135||39/5||288||1||drawn||v West Indies||Georgetown||May 5, 2000||Test 1494|
Apart from Pakistan against India in Karachi 2006, there are only two instances in the table below of teams winning a Test after losing the first six wickets for less than 60. Both were timeless Ashes Tests in the 19th century. In 1895 Australia were 51 for 6 at the SCG before Harry Graham scored 105 at No. 5 and, along with Albert Trott who made 85, led his team to 284 in the first innings. England were shot out for 65 and 72. When England visited in 1898, Australia were once again struggling at 58 for 6, this time at the MCG, before Clem Hill made 188 to take them to 323. Australia took a first-innings lead of 149, were able to enforce the follow-on according to rules at the time, and chased a target of 115 to win by eight wickets.
|N Kapil Dev (India)||129||31/6||215||3||lost||v South Africa||Port Elizabeth||Dec 26, 1992||Test 1206|
|Kamran Akmal (Pak)||113||39/6||245||1||won||v India||Karachi||Jan 29, 2006||Test 1783|
|Asif Iqbal (Pak)||146||41/6||255||3||lost||v England||The Oval||Aug 24, 1967||Test 623|
|H Graham (Aus)||105||51/6||284||1||won||v England||Sydney||Feb 1, 1895||Test 45|
|C Hill (Aus)||188||58/6||323||1||won||v England||Melbourne||Jan 29, 1898||Test 56|
|RC Russell (Eng)||128*||59/6||264||3||lost||v Australia||Manchester||Jul 27, 1989||Test 1124|
|Mohammad Wasim (Pak)||109*||60/6||231||4||lost||v New Zealand||Lahore||Nov 21, 1996||Test 1339|
|JD Ryder (NZ)||102||60/6||279||1||lost||v India||Hamilton||Mar 18, 2009||Test 1915|
|DL Vettori (NZ)||118||60/6||279||1||lost||v India||Hamilton||Mar 18, 2009||Test 1915|
|RJ Shastri (India)||107||63/6||251||3||lost||v West Indies||Bridgetown||Apr 7, 1989||Test 1118|
Lord's, August 2010. Before the fourth Test between England and Pakistan was rocked by revelations of spot-fixing, Jonathan Trott and Stuart Broad had rescued their team with centuries during an epic partnership. England were tottering at 102 for 7 in the first innings when Broad joined Trott, and the pair added a record 332 runs for the eighth wicket. Trott made 184 and Broad 169 as England ended on 446. Pakistan folded for 74 and 147 in their two innings, as accusations of spot-fixing were made against Salman Butt, Mohammad Amir and Mohammad Asif by the now-defunct News of the World, for which they were found guilty a year later in a British court.
|Asif Iqbal (Pak)||146||53/7||255||3||lost||v England||The Oval||Aug 24, 1967||Test 623|
|P Willey (Eng)||100*||73/7||209/9d||3||drawn||v West Indies||The Oval||Jul 24, 1980||Test 883|
|KC Sangakkara (SL)||100*||80/7||170||3||lost||v New Zealand||Christchurch||Dec 7, 2006||Test 1820|
|N Kapil Dev (India)||129||88/7||215||3||lost||v South Africa||Port Elizabeth||Dec 26, 1992||Test 1206|
|MG Burgess (NZ)||119*||92/7||200||3||drawn||v Pakistan||Dhaka||Nov 8, 1969||Test 665|
|DJ Cullinan (SA)||122*||95/7||228/8||4||drawn||v India||Johannesburg||Jan 16, 1997||Test 1350|
|G Kirsten (SA)||100*||98/7||239||1||won||v Pakistan||Faisalabad||Oct 24, 1997||Test 1382|
|NJ Astle (NZ)||102*||101/7||248/9d||3||drawn||v England||Auckland||Jan 24, 1997||Test 1351|
|IJL Trott (Eng)||184||102/7||446||1||won||v Pakistan||Lord's||Aug 26, 2010||Test 1971|
|SCJ Broad (Eng)||169||102/7||446||1||won||v Pakistan||Lord's||Aug 26, 2010||Test 1971|
The Oval Test between England and West Indies in 1980 seemed headed for a draw when the hosts began their second innings after securing a lead of 105 in the first. Michael Holding and Colin Croft then reduced England to 20 for 4 at stumps on the fourth day. The slump continued on the fifth morning and England were 67 for 6 when Peter Willey began his innings. They were soon 92 for 9, leading by only 197, and West Indies were in with a shot with three and a half hours left in the match. All they had to do was get past Willey and Bob Willis. They couldn't do it, though. Willis batted 114 balls for his 24, and Willey played out nearly four hours to score an unbeaten 100, his maiden Test century. England were 209 for 9 when the Test ended in a draw.
|Asif Iqbal (Pak)||146||65/8||255||3||lost||v England||The Oval||Aug 24, 1967||Test 623|
|P Willey (Eng)||100*||84/8||209/9d||3||drawn||v West Indies||The Oval||Jul 24, 1980||Test 883|
|KC Sangakkara (SL)||100*||99/8||170||3||lost||v New Zealand||Christchurch||Dec 7, 2006||Test 1820|
|MG Burgess (NZ)||119*||101/8||200||3||drawn||v Pakistan||Dhaka||Nov 8, 1969||Test 665|
|NJ Astle (NZ)||102*||105/8||248/9d||3||drawn||v England||Auckland||Jan 24, 1997||Test 1351|
|N Kapil Dev (India)||129||120/8||215||3||lost||v South Africa||Port Elizabeth||Dec 26, 1992||Test 1206|
|JH Sinclair (SA)||106||127/8||177||2||lost||v England||Cape Town||Apr 1, 1899||Test 59|
|Moin Khan (Pak)||117*||132/8||212||4||lost||v Sri Lanka||Sialkot||Sep 22, 1995||Test 1306|
|Mohammad Yousuf (Pak)||112||136/8||216||3||lost||v India||Multan||Mar 28, 2004||Test 1693|
|HW Taylor (SA)||109||144/8||182||1||lost||v England||Durban||Dec 13, 1913||Test 130|
England were on the verge of victory at Eden Park in 1997. After taking a lead of 131 in the first innings, they had reduced New Zealand to 142 for 9 in the second. The hosts were only 11 runs ahead when Danny Morrison, a notorious No. 11 with 24 ducks, joined Nathan Astle. There were nearly three hours left in the Test, so the fall of the last New Zealand wicket followed by the completion of England's chase appeared imminent. Morrison and Astle added 106 for the last wicket, though, with both batsmen facing the same number of deliveries during the partnership - 133. England's chances of victory slowly faded and the Test ended after Astle reached his century. The last wicket had lasted 165 minutes.
|P Willey (Eng)||100*||92/9||209/9d||3||drawn||v West Indies||The Oval||Jul 24, 1980||Test 883|
|NJ Astle (NZ)||102*||142/9||248/9d||3||drawn||v England||Auckland||Jan 24, 1997||Test 1351|
|KC Sangakkara (SL)||100*||143/9||170||3||lost||v New Zealand||Christchurch||Dec 7, 2006||Test 1820|
|Moin Khan (Pak)||117*||147/9||212||4||lost||v Sri Lanka||Sialkot||Sep 22, 1995||Test 1306|
|CAG Russell (Eng)||111||149/9||241||3||won||v South Africa||Durban||Feb 16, 1923||Test 152|
|KJ Hughes (Aus)||100*||155/9||198||1||won||v West Indies||Melbourne||Dec 26, 1981||Test 915|
|JR Reid (NZ)||100||159/9||159||3||lost||v England||Christchurch||Mar 15, 1963||Test 542|
|HGO Owen-Smith (SA)||129||172/9||275||3||lost||v England||Leeds||Jul 13, 1929||Test 183|
|JH Sinclair (SA)||106||173/9||177||2||lost||v England||Cape Town||Apr 1, 1899||Test 59|
|HW Taylor (SA)||109||181/9||182||1||lost||v England||Durban||Dec 13, 1913||Test 130|
Australia were leading 2-1 going into the fifth Ashes Test at the SCG in 1998-99, and they secured a 102-run advantage in the first innings. In their second, however, wickets began to tumble and no one apart from Mark Waugh and Michael Slater made double figures. Slater should have been run out on 35 but was reprieved because of a technical glitch. He went on to make 123 out of Australia's total of 184, 66.84 % of the score, hitting 11 fours and three sixes in his 189-ball innings. Australia set England a target of 287 and the visitors fell 98 runs short.
|JR Reid (NZ)||100||159/10||159||3||lost||v England||Christchurch||Mar 15, 1963||Test 542|
|KC Sangakkara (SL)||100*||170/10||170||3||lost||v New Zealand||Christchurch||Dec 7, 2006||Test 1820|
|JH Sinclair (SA)||106||177/10||177||2||lost||v England||Cape Town||Apr 1, 1899||Test 59|
|HW Taylor (SA)||109||182/10||182||1||lost||v England||Durban||Dec 13, 1913||Test 130|
|MJ Slater (Aus)||123||184/10||184||3||won||v England||Sydney||Jan 2, 1999||Test 1439|
|AB Barath (WI)||104||187/10||187||3||lost||v Australia||Brisbane||Nov 26, 2009||Test 1936|
|DG Bradman (Aus)||103*||191/10||191||3||won||v England||Melbourne||Dec 30, 1932||Test 221|
|MC Cowdrey (Eng)||102||191/10||191||1||won||v Australia||Melbourne||Dec 31, 1954||Test 393|
|GA Headley (WI)||102*||193/10||193||2||lost||v Australia||Brisbane||Jan 16, 1931||Test 203|
|RR Sarwan (WI)||107*||194/10||194||3||lost||v South Africa||Port of Spain||Apr 8, 2005||Test 1747|
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
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