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February 4 down the years

An all-too-brief star

Archie Jackson's storied start

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Archie Jackson: considered by some to be as good as Bradman
Archie Jackson: considered by some to be as good as Bradman © Getty Images

A debut ton for 19-year-old Archie Jackson in Adelaide. His 164, made in five hours and 20 minutes, gave Australia a slender first-innings lead, but England eventually won a cracking match by only 12 runs. Jackson was hailed as being almost as good a batsman as Don Bradman, but within four years he died from tuberculosis.

Records galore in Wellington. With New Zealand 148 for 2 in the second innings, still 175 behind Sri Lanka, Martin Crowe and Andrew Jones saved the match and more with an amazing partnership of 467. It was the highest for the third wicket in first-class cricket at the time, as well as the highest for any wicket in Tests. After such a meaty stand it was fitting that Arjuna Ranatunga was the man to dismiss them both - Crowe agonisingly for 299, the highest score by a New Zealander in Tests till Brendon McCullum made a triple-hundred in 2014.

Virgin territory for Richard Hadlee, who became the first man to take 400 Test wickets when he bowled Sanjay Manjrekar in the first Test in Christchurch on this day. Hadlee took seven wickets and Danny Morrison six, while John Wright made a nine-hour 185 to help New Zealand to a comfortable ten-wicket victory.

Zimbabwe completed their maiden Test victory in their 11th Test, a little over two years after their first match, beating Pakistan in Harare by an innings and 64 runs. Grant Flower scored an unbeaten 201, while his brother Andy and Guy Whittall contributed hundreds towards Zimbabwe's first-innings score of 544 for 4 declared. Heath Streak took 6 for 90 to help dismiss Pakistan for 322 in the first innings, and added three more to his kitty as they fell for 158 in the follow-on.

India racked up their highest Test total at the time, 644 for 7 declared, against West Indies in Kanpur. Faoud Bacchus went on to make a career-best 250, after Gundappa Viswanath (179), Anshuman Gaekwad (101) and Mohinder Amarnath (101 not out) had all made hundreds. Bacchus' eight-and-a-half-hour innings took West Indies to 452 for 8. Rain had ruled out play for nearly two days, and adding a sixth day was of no use. India won the six-Test series 1-0.

Test double-hundreds against the 1980s West Indies didn't grow on trees. In fact, there were only two, and Dean Jones made one of them on this day in Adelaide. His blistering 216 was the highlight of a drawn game that gave West Indies the series 3-1. This is really where it all turned around for Australia: having lost the first three Tests, they won the fourth improbably and scrapped for a draw here.

Birth of the Pakistan batsman Wallis Mathias, who played 21 Tests between 1955 and 1962. At his best a fluent strokeplayer, Mathias never really got going at the highest level and averaged only 23.72. The closest he got to a Test hundred was successive scores in the 70s in the West Indies in 1957-58. He died in his native Karachi in 1994.

A special one-dayer for England at the MCG to commemorate 200 years of white settlement in Australia. Geoff Marsh - the only man to exceed 37 - decided the match with a patient 87. This was also the one-day debut of Neal Radford and Paul Jarvis, although their combined figures of 20-0-103-0 and zero runs meant it was not one to tell the grandchildren about.

Allrounder Mahmudullah, born on this day, starred in Bangladesh's first overseas win - taking eight wickets in Kingstown. He was named vice-captain in 2011 and played a key role in the middle order, including during the ODI series win over West Indies a year later. But it was towards the end of 2014 when Mahmudullah really made an impact, averaging 77.71 with the bat in ODIs in five months, culminating in a very successful World Cup, where his two centuries - a match-winning one against England, and a nearly victorious one against New Zealand - took Bangladesh to the knockout stage of the World Cup for the first time. In that period in 2014, Mahmudullah also hit a purple patch in Tests, making four half-centuries in four successive Tests.

Other birthdays
1884 Rolland Beaumont (South Africa)
1893 Abe Waddington (England)
1895 Izak Buys (South Africa)
1942 Mehmood Quaraishy (East Africa)
1948 Rakesh Shukla (India)

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