Sri Lanka v Pakistan, 2nd Test, SSC, 5th day

Herath betters Murali, Sarfraz equals Andy Flower

Stats highlights from Sri Lanka's comprehensive Test win by 105 runs at the SSC

S Rajesh

August 18, 2014

Comments: 18 | Text size: A | A

Sarfraz Ahmed topped 50 four times in four innings in this series, making him only the second wicketkeeper, after Andy Flower, to do so in a series © AFP

11 The number of instances of Sri Lanka winning both matches of a bilateral two-Test series. The last such instance was five years ago, at home against New Zealand in 2009. Seven of those wins have been against Zimbabwe or Bangladesh; South Africa and West Indies are the other teams to have suffered such defeats. For Pakistan, it was only the second such defeat: they'd lost a two-Test series 2-0 in South Africa in 2002-03.

14 Rangana Herath's match haul in the Test. His figures of 14 for 184 are the second-best in Tests for Sri Lanka, next only to Muttiah Muralitharan's 16 for 220 against England at The Oval in 1998. These are also the second-best match figures for any bowler against Pakistan, after Anil Kumble's 14 for 149 in Delhi in 1999.

4 The number of instances of left-arm bowlers taking more than 14 wickets in a Test - the last such instance was by Hedley Verity against Australia at Lord's in 1934, when he took 15 for 104. Chaminda Vaas is the only other left-arm bowler to take 14 in a match - he took 14 for 191 against West Indies at the SSC in 2001.

23 Herath's series haul, which is the highest by any bowler in a two-Test series (or in a series when a bowler played only two Tests). The previous-highest was 22, by Muralitharan against South Africa in 2006; Murali took 22 at an average of 18.04 in that series, while Herath's 23 in this series came at an average of 15.13.

17 The number of five-fors for Herath in his last 33 Tests, since the beginning of 2011. He has taken 182 wickets during this period, averaging 5.5 wickets per Test, and 26.02 runs per wicket. Before 2011, Herath had taken four five-fors, and 78 wickets, in 24 Tests, averaging 3.25 wickets per Test, and 36.15 runs per wicket.

265 The series aggregate for Sarfraz Ahmed, Pakistan's wicketkeeper. In four innings he made one century and three fifties, with scores of 55, 52*, 103 and 55, and was the top run-getter for Pakistan. His aggregate is the highest by a Pakistan wicketkeeper in a series since India's tour there in 2006, when Kamran Akmal scored 293 runs in five innings.

4 The number of fifty-plus scores for Sarfraz in the series, which is a record for a Pakistan wicketkeeper. There have been five instances of Pakistan wicketkeepers making three fifty-plus scores in a series. The only previous instance of any wicketkeeper touching 50 in every innings he batted in a series (with a minimum of four innings batted) was Andy Flower against India in 2000-01, when he made scores of 183*, 70, 55, 232*.

S Rajesh is stats editor of ESPNcricinfo. @rajeshstats

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Posted by   on (August 19, 2014, 10:07 GMT)

Herath Vs Murali is a great example of a very important fact that we tends to ignore when comparing players from different times.... Murali probably bowled more to better player of spin from India/Pakistan/etc.... and hence his average is a bit higher..definitely Herath bowled to much lesser batsman these days and hence a better average.... same can be observed with batsman who have scored most of their test-runs in last 4-5 years. But having said that, I still believe that we will continue to ignore such facts in future as well... cheers

Posted by   on (August 19, 2014, 7:13 GMT)

Problem for Pakistan was lack of match practice, their dismal batting line up touched bottom on flat tracks, hopefully they will improve as the season moves forward. Playing all of their cricket outside home already has rung alarms!!

Posted by Ms.Cricket on (August 19, 2014, 5:09 GMT)

The best part about Herath's achievement is he has done it without bending his arm.

Posted by rajithwijepura on (August 19, 2014, 4:15 GMT)

@JohannK - true. but remember in that match SL lost minimum 40 overs due to rain. If there was no rain same story would be applied to SA too

Posted by   on (August 19, 2014, 3:30 GMT)

priya65

you are very correct.....if Rangana got the chance to play early with Murali..he could be an one of best bowlers in Cricket....i still believe we miss the best of Rangana.........he should play before long ago.........

Posted by AltafPatel on (August 18, 2014, 21:27 GMT)

SA would be now more proud of their double series victory here last month.

Posted by   on (August 18, 2014, 18:25 GMT)

Good thing for Pakistan Sarfraz performed. That should put an end to musical chair they had with the keeper going back to Akmal brothers frequently.

Posted by Kays789 on (August 18, 2014, 16:01 GMT)

JohannK: It's also puts in perspective what those 25 overs that were lost to rain also did to the result of the game. SA should thank the weather for saving them from defeat in the 2nd test. There's no way the last two tail-enders would have survived 30 odd overs against Herath and Perera.

Posted by priya65 on (August 18, 2014, 12:13 GMT)

Rangana was a victim of Selection policy that was dominated by the batters. They mostly went with seven batsmen and 4 bowlers. With Murali in the team, Batsmen were trying to escape the axe by assuming that someone will click. Result was pathetic. When SL won the wins were thumping and when they lost they lookeed spinelless. When SL ususllay won Murali clicked and more than a couple of batters scored big. With Vaas in they just managed. There was no one like Rangana to complement Murali when he didn't succeed. If Rangana- Dilruwan combination shut the Batsmen like this in this series and the one before, how nice it could have been with Rangna- Murali? Rangana was banished because of one bad test series or so previously. Batters get chances repeatedly and the bowlers always get kicked out unceremoniously. We have to think of other bowlers too and get them going, 6 batsmen and 5 bowlers is ideal. If it is 4 bowlers at least 3 should take serious wickets.

Posted by JohannK on (August 18, 2014, 12:06 GMT)

That puts South Africa's efforts to draw the 2nd test vs SL into proper perspective. RESPECT for the SA batsmen.

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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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