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Allan Border's twin 150s, and other uniques

Exactly 40 years ago on this day, Allan Border (yes, that man again), scored 153 in the second innings on the last day of the Lahore Test against Pakistan. It was a fine effort, but nothing extraordinary in itself, given that the match was a fairly high-scoring draw: only three innings were played, and 24 wickets went down in 398 overs, which is roughly a wicket every 100 balls.

However, what made this extraordinary was the prequel to his 153: in the first innings, Border had scored an unbeaten 150, making this the first and only instance of a batsman touching 150 in each innings of a Test.

Incidentally, Border batted at No. 6 in each innings, and his match aggregate of 303 is the second-highest by a No. 6 batsman in a Test. As it turns out, the player who holds that record also came closest to equalling Border's feat. Against Bangladesh in Chattogram in 2009, Tillakaratne Dilshan, also batting at No. 6 in each innings, scored 162 and 143, falling only seven short of the milestone. Andy Flower scored 142 and 199 not out against South Africa in 2001, while Steven Smith topped 140 in each innings but fell short of 150 both times against England in the 2019 Ashes.

To celebrate Border's rare achievement, here's a look at some other events that have happened only once in men's cricket.

Four down for nothing

India is the only team to have lost their first four wickets without a run on the board, in the second innings against England at Headingley in 1952. Pankaj Roy, Datta Gaekwad, Madhav Mantri and Vijay Manjrekar were the batsmen dismissed as Fred Trueman (three wickets) and Alec Bedser (one) destroyed India's top order. There is only one other instance of a team losing their top four wickets for fewer than four runs: England against South Africa in Johannesburg in 1999, when they were 2 for 4.

600 for 1

That's the other end of the spectrum; only once in Tests has a team reached 600 losing fewer than two wickets - Sri Lanka achieved it in Colombo in 1997. India were at the receiving end again, this time at the hands of Sanath Jayasuriya (340) and Roshan Mahanama (225), who had a partnership of 576 for the second wicket. Sri Lanka lost their second wicket at 615, and eventually declared on 952 for 6, the highest-ever total in Test cricket. The next highest score at the fall of the second wicket in 538, also by Sri Lanka, against Zimbabwe in Bulawayo in 2004.

Opener unbeaten twice in a Test

West Indies' Kraigg Brathwaite is the only opener in Test history to achieve this feat: against Pakistan in Sharjah in 2015, he carried his bat in the first innings, scoring an unbeaten 142 out of a team total of 337. In the second innings, with West Indies chasing 153 for victory, Brathwaite took them home with an unbeaten 60 after they had slumped to 67 for 5. Not surprisingly, he was named Man of the Match.

Centuries on Test and ODI debut

When Pakistan's Abid Ali scored an unbeaten 109 against Sri Lanka in Rawalpindi last year - the first Test hosted in Pakistan in ten years - he became the first player to score centuries on both Test and ODI debut: earlier in the year he had made 112 against Australia in his first ODI. Apart from the historical significance of the Test, the game itself was almost a washout, with Sri Lanka's first innings completed only on the fifth day, but it helped Ali achieve a feat never seen before in cricket.

One Test, but nothing to show for it

The Wisden Cricketers' Almanack described him as a 'neat and elegant' batsman, and he scored over 10,000 first-class runs, but England's Jack MacBryan is in the record books for being the only player to have played a Test without coming out to bat, bowl a ball, or take a catch or effect a stumping. MacBryan played only one Test - against South Africa at Old Trafford in 1924 - and that game was affected by bad weather, with less than 70 overs bowled. He never played another Test.

Six to start a Test match

Trust Chris Gayle to do the unexpected. Against Bangladesh in Mirpur, he deposited the first of the match - from debutant offspinner Sohag Gazi - over long-on for six. That is the only recorded instance of a six being hit from the first ball of a Test match. For good measure, Gayle hit the fourth ball of that over for six as well, but fell soon after, for a brisk 17-ball 24.