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Guptill's feat and his feet

Also: career captains, most Test runs without a duck, most runs in a successful chase, and most runs in away matches

Steven Lynch

April 10, 2012

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Charlotte Edwards celebrates her century, Australia v England, women's 1st Test, Sydney, January 22, 2011
Charlotte Edwards: most Test runs without a duck © Getty Images
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Martin Guptill recently scored six successive fifties in international cricket. Is this a record? asked Francis Inyang from New Zealand
That fine run by New Zealand's Martin Guptill earlier this year took in 51 in the Test against Zimbabwe in Napier, 70, 77 and 85 in the one-day internationals against them that followed, and then - in Twenty20 internationals - 91 not out against Zimbabwe and 78 not out v South Africa in Wellington. Guptill is the 23rd batsman to string together such a sequence in all international cricket (Misbah-ul-Haq and Alastair Cook did it in 2011). The overall record, however, is eight successive half-centuries, by Javed Miandad - all in one-day internationals - for Pakistan against India, Australia and England between March and May 1987.

Which current international player is missing three toes? asked Kyle Moore from Melbourne
This digitally challenged cricketer is the man mentioned in the previous question: Martin Guptill, the New Zealand opener, lost three toes on his left foot after an accident with a forklift truck when he was 14. While Martin was recovering in hospital his father asked whether anyone from the New Zealand team could come in and cheer him up: "The next day Stephen Fleming popped in. It was really nice of him." Less than ten years later Guptill broke Fleming's record for the highest score by a New Zealander on one-day debut, hitting 122 not out against West Indies in Auckland in January 2009. Guptill's handicap doesn't seem to prevent him from producing off- and straight-drives to match anyone in the game today, or racing around the outfield.

Lee Germon captained New Zealand in all his 12 Tests. How many others played their entire Test career as captain? asked Stean Hainsworth from Australia
In all there have been 24 men who played all their Tests as captain - five of those, most notably the future Hollywood movie star Aubrey Smith, won just one cap. The only one to have played more than Lee Germon's 12 Tests was the South African wicketkeeper Percy Sherwell, who skippered in all 13 of his Test appearances, between 1905-06 and 1910-11. Jackie Grant of West Indies also played 12 Tests, all as captain, during the 1930s - the same decade in which Herby Wade led South Africa in all his ten Tests. The Mann family - Frank, who led England in their five-Test series in South Africa in 1922-23, and George, who did likewise in 1948-49 and also played twice against New Zealand at home in 1949 - also completed a dozen Tests solely as captain. Abdul Hafeez Kardar captained in all his 23 Tests for Pakistan in the 1950s, but had previously played three for India, not as captain, while Kepler Wessels skippered South Africa in all his 16 Tests for them, but had previously appeared in 24 for Australia as a player alone.

Who is currently the only player to have scored more than 1500 Test runs without a duck? asked Lucky Singh from Belgium
This one stumped me for a while, as the man with the most Test runs without being out for a duck is currently the former Zimbabwe captain Dave Houghton - and he "only" made 1464. Current players Darren Bravo (1155 before the series against Australia) and Angelo Mathews (1219 after the second Test against England in Colombo) are coming up on the rails, but are still some way short of 1500. And then I looked at the lists for women's cricket... to find England's captain Charlotte Edwards sitting proudly atop their list, with 1522 runs in 19 Tests without a duck. The record for (men's) one-day internationals is held by Kepler Wessels, who played 109 matches for Australia and South Africa and scored an impressive 3367 runs without ever bagging a duck - almost three times as many runs as the next man, Peter Kirsten of South Africa (1293).

Was Virat Kohli's 183 at Mirpur the highest score in a successful run-chase in a one-day international? asked Arun Dagia from Argentina
Virat Kohli's 183 for India against Pakistan in Mirpur (in the match mentioned in the question above) actually comes in second on that particular list, behind Shane Watson's thunderous 185 not out for Australia against Bangladesh, also in Mirpur, in April 2011. Several people have pointed out that my answer to a recent question here about the percentage of runs by one individual in a one-day international innings should probably have included Watson's 79.7% in that one - and indeed Brendon McCullum's unbeaten 80 out of 95 for 0 (84.2%) as New Zealand overhauled Bangladesh's paltry 93 in just six overs in Queenstown on New Year's Eve in 2007.

Does the just-retired Rahul Dravid hold the record for the most Test runs away from home? asked Mauro Freitas from the United Arab Emirates
Rahul Dravid finished with 7690 runs from 94 overseas Tests, a long way clear of the next man on this table, Brian Lara (5736). But Dravid is nonetheless a fair distance behind the leader, and it's the name you'd probably expect: Sachin Tendulkar has so far scored 8705 runs in 106 Test matches outside India. In home Tests Ricky Ponting leads the way, with 7546 runs from 89 matches, ahead of Tendulkar (6765) and Jacques Kallis (6738), who have both played 82 Tests on home soil. After the second Test against England Mahela Jayawardene was fourth with 6646 runs in 72 Tests in Sri Lanka.

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

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Steven Lynch Steven Lynch won the Wisden Cricket Monthly Christmas Quiz three years running before the then-editor said "I can't let you win it again, but would you like a job?" That lasted for 15 years, before he moved across to the Wisden website when that was set up in 2000. Following the merger of the two sites early in 2003 he was appointed as the global editor of Wisden Cricinfo. In June 2005 he became the deputy editor of Wisden Cricketers' Almanack. He continues to contribute the popular weekly "Ask Steven" question-and-answer column on ESPNcricinfo, and edits the Wisden Guide to International Cricket.

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