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Ask the Spider: Ask The Spider #17
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Q: Has anyone captained 100 consecutive ODIs without missing a game?

A :Yes, just one person. South Africa's Hansie Cronje played (and skippered) every game from his permanent appointment in December 1994 to his infamous career-ending match-fixing allegations. In this time, South Africa played 130 games, the last being in March 2000. Mohammad Azharuddin, coincidentally another who went down for match-fixing at the same time as Cronje, almost matched him, taking charge of India 98 times in a row between December 1991 and May 1996. And Cronje's successor, Shaun Pollock, took charge of South Africa's next 89 games too, before being injudiciously sacked following South Africa's World Cup 2003 disaster.
Q: What is the most number of wickets that have fallen to catches in a single ODI?

A: In the 1985/86 Asia Cup, Pakistan and Sri Lanka opened the tournament and in their match, 18 of the 20 wickets fell to catches, including two caught-and-bowleds, a substitute catch and six catches to wicketkeepers Brendon Kuruppu and Zulqarnain. Kuruppu also made a stumping, and the one remaining wicket was Pakistan's last, which was bowled.
Q: Also, what is the most that have fallen to catches without one going to the wicketkeeper?

A: Remarkably, it is just one fewer than the above match. In Australia vs. India at The MCG in the VB Series of 2003/04, 17 of the 20 wickets fell to catches, none of which went to either wicketkeeper, Rahul Dravid or Adam Gilchrist.
Q: What is the highest opening partnership for a team batting second in a Test which resulted in victory?

A: This occurred a long time ago - in the 1911/12 Ashes, in fact. At The MCG, after FR Foster and SF Barnes had knocked Australia over cheaply, Jack Hobbs and Wilfred Rhodes put-on 323 for England's first-wicket. Hobbs scored 178, Rhodes 179.
Q: Who has held the most catches in all international cricket, Tests, ODIs and Twenty20 Internationals?

A: Adam Gilchrist has held 813 and currently leads the way. Mark Boucher is likely to overtake him fairly soon, standing on 788 catches as of this column.
Q: How many times in day\night ODIs in Australia have teams chosen to bat second and won?

A: Not surprisingly, a very small percentage of the time. Just 28 times in fact so far, out of 298 day\night matches played in the country. This is less than 10% of the time. Just 73 times out of 298, too, has the toss-winning captain elected to field first.
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