The Odd Run in Twenty-Six and a Half Thousand

7th January 2014

Around the World in 2 – a few occasional off-breaks

Each week for Mason & Guests I compile and broadcast a brief summary of cricket events outside the Caribbean, with a few “Did You Know, Andrew?” facts thrown in. Here’s this week’s round-up:

“Since we were last on air Australia completed a 5-0 whitewash of England in the Ashes. Mitchell Johnson with 37 wickets at under 14 apiece was Man of the Series, although Brad Haddin must’ve been close too. Did you know, Andrew that Haddin, who passed 3,000 Test runs in the 5th Test, scored the most runs ever in a 5-match series by a no. 7 batsman, and passed 50 in each of his first innings of the series? This has only ever been achieved twice before: by Australia’s Warren Bardsley in 1910/11, and by Sir Everton Weekes v India in 1948/49. England and Australia now face each other in 5 ODIs and 3 T20s, beginning late on Saturday evening our time.”

This week’s question: I said Brad Haddin scored a first innings 50 in each Test of the recent Ashes; but who is the only West Indian wicket-keeper to score over 50 in each Test of a 5-match series?

“South Africa beat India in their brief two-match Test series. The first game was thrillingly drawn with SA 8 runs short of a victory target of 458 with 3 wickets remaining. SA triumphed in the 2nd Test by 10 wickets, with Jacques Kallis scoring 115 in his final innings before retiring from Test cricket. Kallis finished with 13, 289 runs, which Did You Know, Andrew puts him into 3rd place in the All-time list, one single run ahead of Rahul Dravid? Dale Steyn took 9 wickets in the match, but has nonetheless dropped to no. 2 in the ICC bowling rankings, behind team-mate Vernon Philander.

“Pakistan and Sri Lanka drew the first of 3 Tests in UAE, with captain Angelo Mathews steering SL to safety with scores of 91 & 157no, and passing 2,000 Test runs in the process. The 2nd Test begins tomorrow morning. Before the Tests, Pakistan beat SL 3-2 in the ODI series, which saw Mohammad Hafeez score 3 centuries.

“In Australia, the T20 Big Bash League is well underway. The Melbourne Stars are leading the way with 4 wins out of 4. In South Africa, the Ram Slam T20 Challenge has begun. Sunil Narine is due to play for the Cape Cobras, and Chris Gayle, if fit, for the Dolphins.

“West Indies lost the 3rd Test v New Zealand, and lost the series 2-0. Just a couple of stats you may have missed: Did You Know, Andrew that Shiv Chanderpaul passed 1,000 Test runs v NZ, and has gone past Sachin Tendulkar with the most ever not out Test centuries: 17. Chanderpaul has gone back to no. 2 in the ICC’s Test batting rankings. Since then, WI are 2-1 down, with one match abandoned, in their 5-match ODI series. Corey Anderson scored the fastest ever ODI hundred in the 3rd match, off just 36 balls. The 5th and final ODI begins an hour after this show ends, and there will be 2 T20 internationals subsequently, on Saturday and next Wednesday.”

A Few Birthdays:

“Today is the 60th birthday of Alan Butcher, who played one Test for England in 1979, and went on to be an international coach, and was a guest on this programme last March while here as coach of Zimbabwe’s Test team.

“Tomorrow is the 65th birthday of Clyde Mascoll’s hero, Lawrence Rowe who famously scored 214 & 100no on Test debut in 1972; and 302 here in Bridgetown in 1974 v England.

“Thursday sees the 38th birthday of Gareth Breese who played one Test for WI in 2002 v India; and also the 46th birthday of former WI captain, Jimmy Adams whom I’m sure would rather be remembered for his 6 Test hundreds, rather than skippering WI to a 5-0 defeat in Australia in 2000/01. Relieved of the captaincy, he never played another Test for WI – I doubt the same fate awaits Alastair Cook.

“This coming Sunday sees another birthday for a former captain, Richie Richardson’s 52nd. The current WI manager scored 16 Test tons.

“Finally, Monday will see the 32nd birthday of Jermaine Lawson, who took 6-3 in only his 3rd Test, and 51 wickets at under 30 in 13 Tests, but played his last first-class game in the Caribbean when only just past his 26th birthday.”

The answer to this week’s quiz question: Gerry Alexander – who in the 1960/61 series in Australia scored 60 & 5; 5 & 72; 0 & 108; 63no & 87no; 11 & 73.

The Mason & Guests show is broadcast live on Tuesday’s from 6.15-8pm ECT (10.15-midnight GMT)  on Voice of Barbados 92.9fm and can be heard via numerous internet tune-in services.

David Oram

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