Ask The Spider #113

How many catches have so far been taken by Australian wicketkeepers in Test cricket?

Before the commencement of the upcoming series against Pakistan, there have been 2047 – of which 1 came from a stand-in.

I remember reading about Vijay Hazare scoring twin centuries in a Test in Australia and still seeing his team lose the match by an innings. Hashim Amla did the same thing against India earlier this year – Hazare’s Test must have been a six-day game; thus, is Amla the only batsman to score twin centuries and lose by an innings in a five-day Test?

That’s a long question – but the simple answer is yes. Hazare’s 116 and 145 (scored at Adelaide Oval in 194748 – the Fourth Test of India’s first tour of Australia) did indeed come in a six-day Test, and Clyde Walcott scored 155 and 110 only to see his side go down to Australia by an innings – his match came in the Fifth Test of the 1955 series in the Caribbean, which was also a six-day match. The only man to have come particularly close to foreshadowing Amla is Brian Lara, who at Sinhalese Sports Club in 2001/02 scored 221 and 130 and, in five days, still saw West Indies lose to Sri Lanka by ten wickets, having been asked to score just 26 in the fourth-innings.

Have any batsmen ever been run-out in both innings of the same Test?

There have been quite a few – 22 so far, in fact. The first was Peter “Percy” McAlister of Australia (who is perhaps best known for an in-selection-box bust-up with fellow batsman Clem Hill) at the MCG against England in 1907/08, and the most recent presently is Stephen Fleming, who suffered the fate at Basin Reserve against Zimbabwe in 2000/01. A couple of these 22, remarkably, somehow managed it twice: Mark Taylor in just his 2nd Test, against West Indies at Adelaide Oval in 1988/89, then again against England in 1990/91 (also at Adelaide Oval); and a man who appeared alongside him from first Test to last – Ian Healy – whose two both came in the Caribbean, at Bourda in 1991 and Sabina Park in 1999.

Who was the first South African batsman to be dismissed for a duck post-readmission (in Tests only)?

Allan Donald’s 0 in the first-innings of their first Test back – at Kensington Oval in 1992 – claims this title.

And who took their first post-readmission wicket?

After an opening stand of 99 between Desmond Haynes and the (relative) new face Phil Simmons, Richard Snell broke the stand by dismissing Simmons. It was the first of 8 wickets Snell took in the match – at a cost of 157 runs from just 34 overs; an economy-rate of 4.61-an-over.

Leave a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until they have been approved

More articles by Richard Dickinson