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Ask Steven

Two one-day tons and losing, and scoring 199 in a Test

The regular Monday column in which our editor answers your questions about (almost) any aspect of cricket

Steven Lynch
Steven Lynch
The regular Monday column in which our editor answers your questions about (almost) any aspect of cricket:

Andrew Flintoff: not alone in scoring two centuries and losing © Getty Images
I noticed that Andrew Flintoff scored two consecutive one-day hundreds last week but was on the losing side both times. Has this ever happened before? asked Adrian Auguste from St Lucia
Rather surprisingly, it has happened three times before. The first man to manage back-to-back one-day hundreds in a losing cause was Roy Dias, of Sri Lanka, with 102 and 121 against India in 1982-83. Dean Jones did it for Australia in the 1986-87 Perth Challenge, scoring 104 against England and 121 against Pakistan. And the last one to do it before Andy Flintoff was another England player, Graeme Hick, with 126 not out against Sri Lanka and 109 v Australia in the 1998-99 Carlton & United Series. And, as last Friday's Numbers Game column revealed, last Tuesday's match at Lord's was the 12th time that two batsmen (Flintoff and Andrew Strauss, in this case) had scored centuries in the same ODI innings but still ended up on the losing side.
How many batsmen have been out for 199 in Test cricket? asked Mueen-ud-din Hameed
This is a relatively recent phenomenon - it hadn't happened in 108 years of Test cricket until Mudassar Nazar fell for 199 at Faisalabad in 1984-85, but it has now happened in six occasions. The others are: Mohammad Azharuddin, India v Sri Lanka at Kanpur, 1986-87; Matthew Elliott, Australia v England at Headingley, 1997; Sanath Jayasuriya, Sri Lanka v India in Colombo, 1997-98; Steve Waugh, Australia v West Indies at Bridgetown, 1998-99; and Andy Flower, Zimbabwe v South Africa at Harare, 2001-02. Flower was actually stranded on 199 not out - after making 142 in the first innings.
In one of the recent Tests in Pakistan Rahul Dravid was involved in century partnerships for three different wickets, and narrowly missed another. Was that a record for the most century stands in one Test innings? asked Dr Rao from Botswana
The match in question was the third Test between India and Pakistan at Rawalpindi, when Dravid (270) put on 129 with Parthiv Patel, 131 with VVS Laxman, and 131 with Sourav Ganguly. He then added 98 for the sixth wicket before Yuvraj Singh was out for 47. Rather surprisingly that was the 24th time that someone had shared in three century partnerships in the same Test innings - but one man stands alone with four. During his epic match-saving innings of 337 at Bridgetown in 1957-58 Hanif Mohammad shared successive stands of 152 with his fellow opener Imtiaz Ahmed, 112 with Alimuddin, 154 with Saeed Ahmed, and 121 with his brother Wazir Mohammad.
We hear a lot about the great quartet of Indian spinners - Bedi, Chandra, Prasanna and Venkat - in the 1960s and `70s, but how often did they all play in the same side? asked Mukhal Patel
The four great Indian spinners of that era all took more than 100 Test wickets - Bishan Bedi took 266, Bhagwat Chandrasekhar 242, Erapalli Prasanna 189, and Srinivas Venkataraghavan 156 - but they only actually all appeared together in one Test. Usually the choice was between the two offspinners, Prasanna and Venkat. The game they all appeared in was against England at Edgbaston in 1967 - a match in which India were so short of pacemen that their bowling was opened in the first innings by Budhi Kunderan, their reserve wicketkeeper, and in the second by the Nawab of Pataudi, their captain, who managed just one wicket in his 46-Test career. England won by 132 runs, but Prasanna won the battle of the spinners with seven wickets - Chandra managed six, Bedi four, and Venkat captured the solitary scalp of Dennis Amiss.
Andrew Strauss started his Test career with three successive scores of more than 50 - has anyone ever bettered this? asked Jeremy Hicks from Portsmouth
Andrew Strauss, who followed his debut knocks of 112 and 83 against New Zealand at Lord's with 62 (and 10) at Trent Bridge, turns out to be only the fifth batsman to kick off his career with three successive 50-plus scores - the others are the England trio of Herbert Sutcliffe (started against South Africa in 1924 with 64, 122, 83 and 29 not out), Paul Gibb (started against South Africa in 1938-39 with 93, 106, 58 and 38), and Tony Greig (v Australia in 1972 began with 57, 62, 54 and 3), and the West Indian Desmond Haynes, who began his Test career against Australia in 1977-78 with innings of 61, 66 and 55. In his next innings - nearly two years later, thanks to his involvement with World Series Cricket - Haynes scored 42, against Australia again. However, two batsmen made even more impressive starts: in 1920-21 Herbie Collins began his Test career for Australia with knocks of 70, 104, 64 and 162 (followed by 24 and 59) against England. And in 1970-71 Sunil Gavaskar started his stellar career with 65, 67 not out, 116 and 64 not out for India against West Indies. In the next Test Gavaskar made 1 and 117 not out, then added 124 and 220 in the final Test, making seven scores of 50 or more, including four centuries, in his first four matches.
Who was the last person with a double-barrelled surname to represent England - or anyone else? asked David Maddams
The last of the four England players who admitted to a double-barrelled surname is Norman "Mandy" Mitchell-Innes, who played one Test against South Africa at Trent Bridge in 1935. He was forced by severe hay fever to drop out of the next Test - and never played again. At the time of writing Mitchell-Innes was the oldest surviving England Test player. The last for any country - excluding Pakistani names such as Inzamam-ul-Haq - is Glen Bruk-Jackson of Zimbabwe, who played two Tests against Pakistan in 1993-94. For the record, the others are Hugh Bromley-Davenport, George Simpson-Hayward and Henry "Shrimp" Leveson-Gower of England, Albert Rose-Innes, Percy Twentyman-Jones, "Tuppy" Owen-Smith and Jon "Pom-Pom" Fellows-Smith of South Africa, and the one and only double-barrelled Aussie - Leslie O'Brien "Chuck" Fleetwood-Smith.
Steven Lynch is editor of Wisden Cricinfo. For some of these answers he was helped by Travis Basevi, the man who built Stats Guru and the Wisden Wizard. If you want to Ask Steven a question, e-mail him at The most interesting questions will be answered each week in this column. Unfortunately, we can't usually enter into correspondence about individual queries.