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The Tuesday column in which Steven Lynch answers your questions on all things cricket. Challenge him on Facebook

Tight-fisted in T20, and a shared birthday

Also: centuries in a collapse, lowest score to carry his bat, the longest over, and a cricketing victim of the September 11 attack

Steven Lynch

May 1, 2012

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George Dockrell appeals successfully for an lbw against Sachin Tendulkar, India v Ireland, Group B, World Cup 2011, Bangalore, March 6, 2011
George Dockrell: a stingy T20 bowler with an economy rate of 5.28 per over © AFP
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Who has bowled the most maidens in Twenty20 internationals? asked Vinay Mahant from New Zealand
At the moment there are two bowlers who have managed four maidens in Twenty20 internationals: the Zimbabwean slow left-armer Ray Price (from 58.3 overs in 15 matches) and Ireland's medium-pacer Trent Johnston (from 78 in 23). A better indication of a bowler's thriftiness in T20 internationals is his overall economy rate, and on this list (given a qualification of at least 50 overs) it's two more slow left-armers who lead the way: Ireland's George Dockrell has conceded 5.28 runs per over in 15 matches, marginally ahead of Daniel Vettori of New Zealand, who has conceded 5.36 runs per over in 28 games.

I know that Alastair Cook, Simon Jones and Marcus Trescothick were all born on Christmas Day. Is there any other instance of a Test team with three (or more) players born on the same day? asked Harry Brewster from Norfolk
You're right that Cook, Jones and Trescothick were all born on December 25, but Jones played his last Test during the sensational 2005 Ashes series, while Cook did not make his debut until early the following year, so they never actually appeared in the same England side. I haven't been able to check every Test team, but I have found one instance of one with three players born on the same day: in the third Ashes Test of 1948, at Old Trafford, England included Jack Crapp (making his debut), Tom Dollery and Jack Young, all of whom were born on October 14.

Chris Read scored a century for Nottinghamshire the other day, and the next-best score in the innings was only 10. Was this a record? asked Andrew Small from Leicester
Chris Read's performance against Somerset at Trent Bridge last month - he scored 104 not out in a total of 162, and the next-highest score was Steve Mullaney's 10 - echoed an earlier effort by a Nottinghamshire captain. At Bournemouth in 1981, Clive Rice hit 105 not out in a total of 143 - and the next-best was also 10, by Tim Robinson. But there has been an even more lopsided scorecard in first-class cricket: at Swansea in 1977, Glenn Turner carried his bat for 141 out of Worcestershire's 169 (83.4% of the total): the next-best score was 7, by Norman Gifford from No. 9 - he and Turner put on 57, the highest stand of the innings.

What's the lowest score by a batsman carrying his bat? asked Bob Morris from London
The first-class record was set back in 1882, when the noted stonewaller Richard Barlow batted through Lancashire's innings of 69 against Nottinghamshire at Trent Bridge, and finished with just 5 not out in about two and a half hours. The Test record was also set a long time ago: for South Africa against England in Cape Town in 1888-89, Bernard Tancred batted through an innings of 47 to finish with 26 not out. That was the first instance of a batsman carrying his bat in a Test. Bill Woodfull, the Australian opener and future captain, came close to undercutting this with an undefeated 30 out of 66 in the first Ashes Test in Brisbane in 1928-29, although two men were absent hurt in that innings.

Curtly Ambrose once bowled an over, including lots of no-balls and wides, that lasted 15 deliveries. What's the first-class record? asked Prasun Banik from India
I remember Gladstone Small losing his radar and sending down an over that lasted for 22 deliveries. But I think the record for one over was one of 30 deliveries, sent down by the Middlesex player John Human for MCC against New Zealand in a tour match in Dunedin in 1935-36. Wisden explained: "In an effort to gain the use of a new ball, Human sent down 24 wides and byes in succession." In between all the extras there were six fairly decent deliveries so - since wides and no-balls were not debited to the bowler at the time - the over went down in the scorebook as a maiden!

Further to last week's question about the cricketer who died on the Titanic, did any first-class players die in the World Trade Center disaster? asked Mohammad Balaji from Delhi
One first-class cricketer perished in the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center in New York on September 11, 2001, in which almost 3000 people died in all. Nezam Hafiz, a batsman who played six times for Guyana after making his debut in 1988-89 - his top score was 30 against the Leeward Islands in Georgetown - was working on the 94th floor of the North Tower on the fateful day.

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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