Sri Lanka v England, 1st Test, Galle, 3rd day

Swann soars as Strauss slumps

Stats highlights from the third day in Galle

S Rajesh

March 28, 2012

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There was another failure for Andrew Strauss, lbw for 26, Sri Lanka v England, 1st Test, Galle, 2nd day, March 27, 2012
Andrew Strauss has been dismissed between 22 and 32 seven times in his last 14 Test innings © AFP
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  • If England do go on and chase down their target if 340, it will be their highest successful chase in Test cricket. Their highest to date is 332, against Australia way back in 1928. More recently, they scored 315 at Headingley in the Ashes Test in 2001. Their highest in the subcontinent is 209, in Lahore and in Dhaka. In fact, England have never touched 300 in the fourth innings in a Test in Asia: their highest is 285 for 7 - they survived 140 overs in that innings in Kandy in 2003 to achieve a draw.

  • If England win, it will also be the first time a team has successfully chased a 300-plus target against Sri Lanka. The highest so far is India's 264 for 3 in Kandy in 2001; India also chased down a target of 257 in Colombo in 2010. In fact, only twice has any team scored 300-plus in the fourth innings against Sri Lanka: New Zealand scored 397 but lost in 2009, and Pakistan made 337 for 4 in a drawn game in 2006. (Click here for the list of highest fourth-innings total against Sri Lanka.)

  • Graeme Swann's 6 for 82 are the second-best figures by an England bowler in Sri Lanka, next only to John Emburey's 6 for 33 in Sri Lanka's inaugural Test in 1982. Swann also joins a handful of overseas bowlers who've taken six wickets in an innings in a Test in Sri Lanka. Shane Warne is the only one with seven, but he did so in a Test against Pakistan in Colombo in 2002, when he took 7 for 94.

  • Swann's figures are also his best in a Test in Asia, and his second-best in all Tests, next only to his 6 for 65 against Pakistan at Edgbaston in 2010. In eight Tests in Asia, Swann has taken 43 wickets at 28.37, which isn't much different from his career average of 28.54.

  • Prasanna Jayawardene's unbeaten 61 is his fourth 50-plus score in Tests against England. In 12 innings against them, he has scored 450 runs at an average of 50.

  • Andrew Strauss' dismissal for 27 means he has now gone 23 innings without a Test century, since the Ashes Test at the Gabba in 2010. In those 23 innings, he averages 28.52, with a highest of 87. In the last nine months, especially, converting his starts has been the problem: in his last 14 innings, seven times he has been dismissed between 22 and 32.

S Rajesh is stats editor of ESPNcricinfo. Follow him on Twitter

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S Rajesh Stats editor Every week the Numbers Game takes a look at the story behind the stats, with an original slant on facts and figures. The column is edited by S Rajesh, ESPNcricinfo's stats editor in Bangalore. He did an MBA in marketing, and then worked for a year in advertising, before deciding to chuck it in favour of a job which would combine the pleasures of watching cricket and writing about it. The intense office cricket matches were an added bonus.
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