Question: A few weeks ago you answered a question about the stand-in who took a catch as Australia's wicketkeeper. This prompts me to ask - how many catches have been taken by stand-in wicketkeepers in Tests and who has the most?
Spider says: The most is by a man who would be recognised widely as a wicketkeeper - Kumar Sangakkara of Sri Lanka has taken 124 catches as a designated gloveman and a further 7 as, nominally, a stand-in for Prasanna Jayawardene (on one of these occasions, he was given the gloves as a matter of preference while Jayawardene stood in the field, due to his superiority to Jayawardene when keeping to Muttiah Muralitharan). The next-best comes from Majid Khan, who played for Pakistan (mostly as an opening batsman) between 1964/65 and 1982/83 but took the gloves on occasion and held as many as 4 catches with them. Two more Pakistanis, Aamer Malik (1987/88-1994/95) and Taufeeq Umar (2001/02-2006), made 3 catches as stand-in wicketkeepers. 3 others took a couple, and 17 more took a single one, meaning a total of 46 Test catches have been taken by stand-ins down the years.
Q: And has anyone ever made a stumping as a stand-in?
A :As many as 12 people have done this, and 3 even did it twice. The first, Bob Christiani, was like Sangakkara in that he was a recognised wicketkeeper who simply played several Tests as a batsman. Christiani, however, stumped the last two Indian batsmen in their first-innings of the Third Test of the 1948/49 series when Clyde Walcott was suffering from fever and not able to keep (remarkably, Christiani had even bowled a couple of overs earlier in the innings; and Walcott recovered to make a second-innings century). Pakistan's Mohammad Wasim took one each in Tests within a couple of months of each other early in 1997/98. And Hashan Tillakaratne, who like Sangakkara later was a left-handed batsman more than capable of keeping and wore the gloves on several occasions for Sri Lanka, took the gloves from Romesh Kaluwitharana in the final of the 1998/99 Asian Test Championship when he like Walcott was suffering from fever and stumped two Pakistan batsmen. The other 9 include the aforementioned Aamer Malik, and also father and son Vijay and Sanjay Manjrekar.
Q: What are the figures for ODIs?
A: 6 stumpings have been made by stand-ins in the shorter international game, a couple of which came from Javed Miandad (who, by the way, is included in the 9 mentioned above with a single Test stumping as a stand-in). Rather surprisingly, this is over half the figure for catches by stand-ins; just 11 have been taken in ODIs by such 'keepers, and the only stand-in 'keeper to take a couple is another Lankan, Tillakaratne Dilshan.
Q: In India and Sri Lanka, how many away teams have won the toss, fielded and gone on to win the match?
A: In 322 Tests in the two subcontinental nations, the touring side has won the toss on 153 occasions. They have chosen to field first on just 21 of these 153, and 5 out of those 21 led to victory (while 11 led to draws and 5 to defeat).
Q: And what are the figures for the home team?
A: In the 168 Tests so far completed (there is one still in progress, between Sri Lanka and India, as of this column; the Lankans batted upon winning the toss) where the home side won the toss, they have fielded first 26 times, winning 9 (and drawing 11 and losing 6).