THIS WEEK THOSE YEARS!

Australia’s Jason Krejza celebrates his birthday and Anil Kumble became the third to take 600 wickets in Tests

Third week of January

Let us take a trip down memory lane and recall some of the finest moments and incidents that occured during the second week of January.

12 JANUARY

Born on this day were:

Edmund Hinkly (1817-80), Kent left-arm leg-spinner who is credited with the first ‘all ten’ in a first-class match;

Robert ‘Dick’ Motz (1940-), New Zealand pace bowler who was the first Kiwi bowler to take 100 Test wickets and also the first bowler in Test history to be banned from bowling for running on the ‘danger’ area of the pitch;

Richie Richardson (1962-), West Indian batsman and captain who made 16 Test hundreds; and

Gavin Rennie (1976-), Zimbabwe Test opening batsman.

In 1960 Gary Sobers and Frank Worrell made a partnership of 399 against England at Barbados. This was West Indies’ highest partnership for the fourth wicket and their highest for any wicket against England. Sobers made 226 and Worrell was unbeaten on 197, having batted for 682 minutes, the longest innings in West Indian Test history.

He and Sobers also became the first pair to bat through two consecutive days of a Test, though there was a rest day in between, and an hour was lost to rain on the first day of their alliance.

In 1978 Australia lost back-to back home Tests for the first time since 1954 when they lost to India by an innings and two runs in the fourth Test at Sydney. Bedi, Prasanna and Chandrasekhar shared 16 wickets in what was India’s first innings victory overseas. India squared the series at 2-2 with this win but Australia took the series with a win in the final Test.

In 1995 South Africa thrashed Pakistan by a whopping 157 runs in the second Mandela Trophy final at Johannesburg. Gary Kirsten and Mike Rindel added 190 runs for the first wicket – 81 more than what whole Pakistan team managed. They were 42 for 6, were saved from the utter humiliation by the seventh wicket partnership of 55 between Asif Mujtaba and Wasim Akram.

13 JANUARY

Born on this day were:

Kenia Jayantilal (1948-), Indian batsman whose only Test was against the West Indies in 1971;

Gary Brent (1976-), Zimbabwe pace bowler,

Kamran Akmal (1982-), Pakistan’s wicketkeeper and

Jermaine Lawson (1982-) West Indian pace bowler, who took a hat-trick against Australia at Bridgetown in 2002-03 in his sixth Test.

In 1832 Thomas Lord died in Hampshire, aged 76. The founder of the famous lord’s cricket ground, he was a competent slow underarm bowler and played for the White Conduit Cricket Club. He also has a race named in his honour to commemorate his birth in Thirsk in 1755.

In 1911 South Africa recorded its first Test win over Australia. They did it at Adelaide in a match of 1,646 runs and four centuries, including a monumental 214 not out from Victor Trumper, which was the highest score in a Test defeat – until Brain Lara hit 221 against Sri Lanka in Colombo in December 2002.

In 1930 New Zealand’s first Test ended at Christchurch in less than two days. England were comfortable winners by eight wicket in a game where nobody reached 50. Maurice Allom making his debut took four wickets in five balls, including a hat-trick in his eighth over in Test cricket. England were also playing a concurrent series in the West Indies at the time and this remains the only instance of a country playing in two Tests on the same day.

In 1933 ‘Bodyline’ tactics broke out for the first time in Test cricket when Harold Larwood and Bill Voce (under the captaincy of Douglas Jardine) bowled ‘leg theory’ to the Australians in the third Test at Adelaide. Bouncers battered Bill Woodfull and Bertie Oldfield in a time when there were no helmets.

(‘Well bowled, Harold’ – Douglas Jardine to Larwood after he hit Woodfull above the heart.) The term ‘Bodyline’ was first used by Jack Worrall, a former Australian Test cricketer who talked about ‘half-pitched slingers on the body line’. It gained currency when a sub-editor used it in a headline and cricket’s most infamous term was born.

In 1985 West Indian captain Clive Lloyd effected three run-outs and then made an unbeaten 52 to give his side a five-wicket win over Australia in the Benson & Hedges World Series one-dayer in Brisbane.

In 2008 Marlon Samuels was reported for a suspect action by the on-field umpires after the Durban Test. An independent analysis later confirmed the umpires’ judgement and Samuels was duly suspended from bowling in international cricket.

14 JANUARY

Born on this day were:

Prof. Dinkar Balwant Deodhar (1892-1993), the ‘W.G. Grace’ of Indian cricket, who scored a century against A.E.R. Gilligan’s MCC in an unofficial Test in 1926 (He was a professor of Sanskrit at Poona and played cricket clad in a dhoti. He scored 4,522 runs from 81 first-class matches and played many memorable innings in the Quadrangular Tournament and in the Ranji Trophy, and remains the oldest player to score a century in both innings of a first-class match);

Ken Higgs (1937-), English pace-bowler who played in 15 Tests (1965-68);

Martin Bicknell (1969-), English pace bowler;

Darren Ganga (1979-), West Indian batsman; and

Australia’s Jason Krejza (1983-), who claimed 12 wickets on his Test debut but conceded a world record 358 runs (v India at Nagpur in 2008-09).

In 1898 Australia’s Joe Darling scored Test cricket’s first ever six when he smacked the ball out of the Adelaide Oval, in the first Test against England. In those days the ball had to be hit out of the ground to get six – clearing the boundary was only worth five. In fact he got to his century with this six, becoming in the process the first batsman to reach a hundred with a maximum hit. He went on to score 178.

In 1964 Indian bowler Rameshchandra Gangaram ‘Bapu’ Nadkarni completed the remarkable analysis of 32-27-5-0 which included a world record 21 consecutive maidens in the first Test against England at Madras. (It is said that he got the nickname ‘Bapu’ because he wore a langot just like the Mahatma.)

His spell of 131 balls without conceding a run is not the best though: South African off-spinner Hugh Tayfield, in the days of eight-ball overs, went 137 balls without conceding a run (in the third Test against England at Durban in 1956-57).

In 1978 Australia took the Women’s World Cup with a victory over England in the final match at Hyderabad (India). England could manage only 98 for 8 from 50 overs (they were 28 for 6 at one stage), and Australia registered an easy eight-wicket win with almost 20 overs to spare.

In 2007 Australia beat New Zealand at Hobart despite Shane Bond’s hat-trick.

In 2008 India’s Sony television network and the Singapore-based World Sports Group secured the rights for the IPL, at a cost of more than US$1 billion.

15 JANUARY

Born on this day were:

Subimal ‘Chuni’ Goswami (1938-), Indian soccer player who not only led India to an Asian Games Gold medal in 1962 but also was a cricket all-rounder who captained Bengal in the Ranji Trophy in 46 matches;

Paul Parker (1956-), England batsman who played one Test against Australia in 1981;

Timothy Curtis (1960-), English batsman who played five Tests, all against Australia in 1988-89;

Richard Blakey (1967-), who played two Tests for England as a wicketkeeper in 1993; and

Ryan Sidebottom (1978-), England’s pace bowler.

Two fairytale debuts, nearly a hundred years apart:

In 1895 Albert Trott, took 8 for 43 at Adelaide against England to give Australia a crushing 382-run victory. In 1988 Indian leg-spinner Narendra Hirwani completed match figures of 16 for 136 on debut in the fourth Test against the West Indies at Madras.

These remain the best figures by any bowler on debut (and the third-best all-time figures in Test cricket after Jim Laker (19 for 90 in 1956) and Sydney Barnes (17 for 159 in 1913-14). He surpassed the previous-best on debut – Australian Bob Massie’s 16 for 137 at Lord’s in 1972 – by just one run. In another record five batsmen were stumped out by Kiran More in the second innings, and six in the match, both Test records at the time.

Double centuries on this day in the same innings for Pakistan and England, both against India:

In 1983 Javed Miandad and Mudassar Nazar made a stand of 451 for the third wicket against India in the fourth Test at Hyderabad. Mudassar Nazar made 231 and Miandad remained not out on 280 – the first time two Pakistani had scored double centuries in the same innings. It was also a record third-wicket partnership in Tests and equalled the world record for any wicket in Tests at the time: 451 by Ponsford and Bradman in 1934.

In 1985 Graeme Fowler and Mike Gatting made 201 and 207 in the fourth Test against India at Madras – the first time in 610 Tests that two Englishmen had made double-hundreds in the same innings. Gatting’s was the highest score by an Englishman in India, and it set up an eventual nine-wicket victory. It gave England a 2-1 lead, which they held onto to become the first side to win a series in India from behind.

In 2002 Muttiah Muralitharan took his 400th Test wicket in the third Test at Galle against Zimbabwe when he bowled Henry Olonga in the first innings. He became the seventh bowler and the second spinner after Shane Warne to reach this milestone. He was the fastest to get there (in 72 Tests) beating Richard Hadlee who did it in 80 Tests.

At 29 years 273 days he was also the youngest, beating Shane Warne by more than two years. Sri Lanka won by a huge margin of 315 runs as Zimbabwe capitulated for only 79 in the second innings.

In 2007 Herschelle Gibbs was banned for making abusive remarks about the crowd during South Africa’s first Test against Pakistan.

16 JANUARY

Born on this day were:

Alexander Webbe (1855-1941), English batsman who played one Test for England in 1878-79 and is considered the best batsman produced by Harrow; and

Wayne Daniel (1956-), West Indian fast bowler who played in ten Tests and took 36 wickets for the West Indies.

In 1907 English all-rounder Alfred Shaw who bowled the first ball in Test cricket and was considered the master of slow-medium, good length bowling died, aged 64. He bowled more overs than he had runs hit off them (25,699 overs and five balls, 24,873 runs).

He was buried according to his wishes: the length of a cricket pitch from the grave of his equally celebrated England team mate, Arthur Shrewsbury. Some time after the interment, someone discovered that the distance between the two tombs was not 22 years but 27. Luckily the county secretary remembered that Shaw always took a five-yard run-up!

In 1920 the first session of the League of Nations opened in Geneva. It is of relevance to us because one of the representatives from India was none other than the great Ranjitsinhji. His co-members were Sir William Meyer, Finance Minister of the Government of India during the war, and Sir Ali Imam, a former Diwan to the Nizam of Hyderabad.

Ranji was accompanied by another cricketing hero and his good friend C.B. Fry who wrote his speeches. It also was at the time that an Albanian Bishop was said to have offered C.B. Fry the throne of Albania.

In 1931 Don Bradman scored 223 against West Indies in the third Test at Brisbane. He was out without adding to his score the next day. Australia won by an innings and 217 runs.

In 1933 Bert Oldfield of Australia was flattened by a Larwood delivery in the third Test at Adelaide. He retired on 41 when the total score was 222. This also happened to be the 222nd Test lending some credence to the superstition about a Nelson. England won by 338 runs.

In 1997 Anthony Stuart of Australia took the 12th hat-trick in ODIs when he took the wickets of Ijaz Ahmed, Mohammad Wasim and Moin Khan in the 12th match of the Carlton & United Series at Melbourne, against Pakistan. He became the second Australian after Bruce Reid to perform this feat. Ironically this was his last international appearance and he remains the only bowler to take a hat-trick in his last international outing.

In 2004 Herschelle Gibbs (192) and Greame Smith (139) of South Africa shared a partnership of 301 runs for the first wicket in the fourth Test against West Indies at Centurion. With this they became the first and only pair in Test history to record three partnerships of 300 or more. Australians Bill Ponsford and Donald Bradman share two 300 plus partnership (both against England) as did V.V.S. Laxman and Rahul Dravid (both against Australia).

In 2006 the Indian opening pair of Virender Sehwag and Rahul Dravid came very close to breaking Pankaj Roy and Vinoo Mankad’s opening stand of 413 that had been the world record for almost 50 years. By the close of fourth day Virender Sehwag and Rahul Dravid were just nine runs behind.

However the final day was badly affected by the fog and only 14 balls could be bowled, in which time Sehwag fell with the score on 410.

In 2007 England finally won a match after 72 days in Australia – against New Zealand.

17 JANUARY

Born on this day were:

Yajurvendrasinh, Yuvraj of Patiala (1913-74), Indian batsman who scored 24 and 60 in his only Test against England at Madras in 1934 (He was the son of Maharaja Bhupendrasinhji of Patiala who played a pioneering role in building the Brabourne stadium and in the formation of the BCCI);

Abdul Hafeez Kardar (1925-96), Pakistan’s first Test captain who had previously played for India as Abdul Hafeez and who later became the president of the Pakistan Cricket Board;

Clyde Leopold Walcott (1926-2006), pre-eminent West Indian batsman, one of the ‘Three Ws’, and later ICC chairman who made an astonishing 12 centuries in 12 Tests, between 1953 and 1955 (including five in one series against Australia); and

Ken Archer (1928-), Australian cricketer who played five Tests for his country and is one of the few cricketers to be offered a baseball contract in America.

A day for consecutive Test centuries:

In 1912 the great Jack Hobbs hit his second consecutive Test century (187) to set up England’s seven-wicket win over Australia at Adelaide.

In 1985 Mohammad Azharuddin scored 105 in his second Test (the fourth Tests at Madras against England) having scored 110 in his debut Test at Calcutta. He became only the fourth batsman after Bill Ponsford, Doug Walters and Alvin Kallicharran to score hundreds in each of his first two Tests. (With his 122 in the fifth Test at Kanpur he made it a unique three in a row.) England amassed 652 for 7 declared and went on to win the match by nine wickets.

In 2004 Jacques Kallis hit his fourth century in successive matches when he made 130 not out on the second day of the fourth Test against West Indies at Centurion. He became the first South African and the ninth player in Test history to make centuries in four successive Test matches.

His aggregate of 712 runs in a four-Test series was also a world record eclipsing Ricky Ponting’s 706 against India in 2003-04. (He made it five in a row in March 2004 when he hit 150 not out in the first Test against New Zealand at Cape Town.)

In 2005 Matthew Hoggard took 12 wickets in the match to give England 77-run win in Johannesburg Test against South Africa.

In 2008 Anil Kumble became the third bowler, after Shane Warne and Muttiah Muralitharan, to take 600 wickets in Tests, when he had Andrew Symonds caught by Rahul Dravid in the Perth Test.