Stranded on 99, and stranded on four

Nuwan Pradeep: six four-fors and a double teapot, but not a single five-for AFP

Was Misbah-ul-Haq the first captain to be stranded on 99 not out in a Test? asked Rajiv Radhakrishnan from England
Misbah-ul-Haq's near-miss in the first Test against West Indies in Kingston last week was only the sixth occasion that any batsman had been stranded on 99 not out in a Test match. The only other captain to do it was Shaun Pollock, for South Africa against Sri Lanka in Centurion in 2002-03. There have been only 13 innings of 99 - out or not out - by captains in Tests, and Misbah is the first man to be on this particular list twice: he was dismissed one short of his hundred against New Zealand in Wellington in 2010-11.

I noticed that Nuwan Pradeep has taken four wickets in an innings six times in Tests now, but hasn't yet managed a five-for. Is this a record? asked Hemachandra de Silva from Sri Lanka
There's still time for Nuwan Pradeep of Sri Lanka to escape from this particular list, but you're right that so far his 28 Test appearances have brought him six four-fors but no five-fors. Surprisingly, perhaps, it's not a record: the Australian seamer Wayne Clark, who played ten Tests in the late 1970s, took four wickets in an innings seven times, but never managed a fifth scalp. He took eight wickets in a match on three occasions, including his debut against India in Brisbane in 1977-78. Clark took 28 wickets in that series, a record haul without a five-for: Joel Garner and Malcolm Marshall each claimed 27 against England in 1985-86. Dayle Hadlee of New Zealand and Mike Hendrick of England both took four wickets in an innings five times: Hendrick's career total of 87 wickets is the most by anyone who never managed a five-for.

Chris Gayle recently became the first to make 10,000 runs in T20 cricket, but is he also the leading scorer in the IPL? asked Mahesh Sawnhey from India
As of today, Chris Gayle lies seventh on the list of IPL run-scorers, with 3578, not far behind Robin Uthappa (3774) and David Warner (3832). A little further ahead come Gautam Gambhir (4021), Rohit Sharma (4047), Virat Kohli (4349), and the current leader Suresh Raina (4416). Gayle has scored a record five IPL centuries - one more than Kohli, and two more than AB de Villiers and David Warner - while his average of 42.09 is the best by anyone with more than 1000 runs (Shaun Marsh is next with 2353 at 41.28). And Gayle has also hit 262 sixes, almost 100 more than the next-best, 168 by Raina and Rohit. Out of interest I also looked at the top IPL wicket-takers: Lasith Malinga leads the way on 149, with Amit Mishra next on 131, then Harbhajan Singh with 124, Piyush Chawla 123 and Dwayne Bravo 122.

What was Don Bradman's batting average as captain? And was it the record? asked Jamie Stewart from Canada
Don Bradman's overall Test batting average famously fell a boundary short of three figures - 99.94 - but he made no such mistake as captain: in 24 Tests, he scored 3147 runs at an average of 101.51. That's easily a record, given more than two matches in charge: next at the moment is Steven Smith, with 73.27, followed by Stanley Jackson (70.28) and Kumar Sangakkara (69.60). There is one man who averaged more than the Don, but he only stood in for two games. Ridley Jacobs led West Indies in Bangladesh in 2002-03, and scored 91 not out in Dhaka and 59 in Chittagong, for an average of 150 while captain.

England's victory in the fourth Test at Edgbaston in 1981 is best remembered now for Ian Botham's mopping-up work at the end, which gave England a narrow victory. But what Test record did Bob Willis set in that match? asked James Parker from England
That match at Edgbaston in 1981 came on the heels of the third Test at Headingley, when Botham-inspired heroics led to England's victory despite following on. Botham finished the Edgbaston Test with a burst of 5 for 1 in 28 balls, which gave England victory by 29 runs, and the lead in the series. The record set by Willis isn't instantly apparent from our scorecard, which doesn't show the no-balls delivered by each bowler: Big Bob sent down 28 in the first innings, and 34 in all, which might have been crucial in a low-scoring match in which no batsman made an individual half-century. Some of his no-balls were scored from, which in those days meant no penalty runs were added to the total. The next highest known number of no-ball calls against one bowler in a Test is 33, for the Jamaican pace bowler Patrick Patterson against Australia in Perth in 1988-89 (West Indies' 72 no-balls in that match is a record for one side in any Test). Wasim Akram sent down 32 no-balls in England's only innings against Pakistan at Old Trafford in 1992.

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