March 20, 2012

Five for none, and Sachin's 100th

Also: highest percentage of runs in ODIs, most stumpings by a bowler, oldest Ranji Trophy player, and very international debuts

New Zealand lost five wickets with their score at 133 against South Africa last week - is this a record? asked Mustafa Chagla from Pakistan
New Zealand's collapse from 133 for 2 to 133 for 7 in the second Test against South Africa in Hamilton last week turns out to be the third time that a team has lost five wickets for no runs in the same Test innings... and the team involved has been New Zealand each time! It happened first against Australia in Wellington in 1945-46, in the first Test after the Second World War: New Zealand slipped from 37 for 2 to 37 for 7, with Bill O'Reilly taking four of the wickets, and were soon all out for 42. Then, in Rawalpindi in 1964-65, New Zealand crumbled from 59 for 4 to 59 for 9 (they had been 57 for 2, so actually lost seven wickets for two runs in all).

Was Sachin Tendulkar's 100th century his first one-day hundred against Bangladesh? asked Chris Bloore from Argentina
Sachin Tendulkar's long-awaited 100th international hundred in Mirpur last week was - rather surprisingly - his first against Bangladesh in one-day internationals. His highest score in 11 previous ODIs against them was 82 not out, in Colombo in July 2004. But Tendulkar has made up for it in Tests, with five centuries in just seven matches against Bangladesh - his average is 136.66 - including his career-highest 248 not out in Dhaka in December 2004. Overall, 20 of Tendulkar's 100 international centuries have come at Australia's expense, then Sri Lanka 17, South Africa 12, England and New Zealand nine, Zimbabwe eight, Pakistan and West Indies seven, Bangladesh six, Kenya four and Namibia one. Another surprise: overall Tendulkar's worst international average is against Ireland - 21.00 from two matches.

Who holds the record for the highest percentage of runs in an a one-day international innings? asked Chris Bridgwater from London
You have to impose some sort of qualification here, otherwise the answer is Kris Srikkanth, who scored 100% of India's total - 1 not out in a score of 1 for 0 - against Sri Lanka in Mackay during the 1991-92 World Cup, in a match that was washed out after just two balls were bowled. If you count only completed innings (in which the side was bowled out) the highest percentage is 63.51%, by the New Zealander Andrew Jones, who made 47 out of 74 aganst Pakistan in Sharjah in May 1990. Relaxing the qualification a little, the leader is Viv Richards, who made 69.48% of West Indies' 272 for 9 against England at Old Trafford in 1984, when his personal contribution was 189 not out. For a full list, click here.

Which bowler has had most people stumped in Tests? asked Jim Bailey from Adelaide
The leader here is, not surprisingly perhaps, Test cricket's leading wicket-taker Muttiah Muralitharan, who lured 47 batsmen out of their ground to be stumped. Next comes Shane Warne, with 36, and another Australian legspinner, Clarrie Grimmett, with 28. Grimmett took 216 wickets in all, and his percentage of stumpings (12.96%) has been bettered by bowlers with more than 100 wickets only by India's Fergie Gupte (20 out of 149 = 13.42%). But Grimmett's predecessor as Australia's legspinner, Arthur Mailey, took 99 Test wickets - 18 of them (18.18%) through stumpings. The only man with more than 50 Test wickets who boasts a higher percentage than that is the Pakistani slow left-armer Nasim-ul-Ghani, with 10 out of 52 dismissals (19.23%).

I noticed that Sairaj Bahutule is captain of Vidarbha at the age of 39. Who was the oldest player in the Ranji Trophy? asked Shripad from India
Sairaj Bahutule, who played two Tests for India in 2001, is still playing (and captaining) Vidarbha at 39 - and 41-year-old Sunil Joshi, another fringe Test player, turned out for Karnataka last year. But they both have rather a long way to go to break the Ranji Trophy record, which is held by the great CK Nayudu - he played his last Ranji match in 1956-57, when he was 61! Nayudu captained Uttar Pradesh in that year's quarter-final against eventual champions Bombay in Benares, and scored 52 in the second innings.

Morne Morkel made his one-day international debut for the African XI. Has anyone else done this? asked Vinay Mahant from New Zealand
It is rather unusual to make your official one-day international debut for a composite team, but you're right that Morne Morkel did so for the African XI in the Afro-Asia Cup in Bangalore in June 2007. But it had happened once before: two years previously, Dale Steyn - frequently Morkel's new-ball partner for South Africa these days - also made his ODI debut for the African XI, against Asia in Centurion.

Steven Lynch is the editor of the Wisden Guide to International Cricket 2012. Ask Steven is now on Facebook