The season began in October at Visakhapatnam with the Test series against South Africa. The home side comfortably won the three-match series 3-0 by registering huge victories – by 203 runs (at Vizag), inns & 137 runs (at Pune) and inns & 202 runs (at Ranchi). In November Bangladesh made their only second official Test tour of India. They lost both their Tests by an innings at Indore and Kolkata. The latter Test match was a day-night encounter, the first ever on subcontinent soil.
Meanwhile, England toured New Zealand for a two-match Test series. The home side won the first by an innings at Mount Maunganui, while the second was at Hamilton was drawn. Around the same time, Pakistan toured Australia and promptly lost both their Tests by an innings at Brisbane and Adelaide. Afghanistan took on the West Indies at Lucknow in India, a neutral venue. The side from the Caribbean won by 9 wickets the lone Test match. In December, Pakistan hosted Sri Lanka for two Test matches, their first since March 2009. The opening Test at Rawalpindi was drawn, but the home side won by a huge margin at their favourite venue - Karachi.
Australia then hosted their neighbours, across the Tasman Sea, New Zealand, who lost all their three Tests by massive margins of 296 (at Perth), 247 (at MCG) and 279 (at SCG) in December/January. South Africa hosted England for a four-match Test series. The home side won the first at Centurion by 107 runs, but the Englishmen came back strongly to win the next three to take the series 3-1.
In January this year, Zimbabwe hosted Sri Lanka for two Tests, with both being played at Harare. Sri Lanka won the first by 10 wickets, while the second Test was drawn. In February, Bangladesh made their third tour of Pakistan and the last tour coming in 2003, more than 16 years ago. The tour was split in two, with the second Test to be played in Karachi after two months, in April. The first Test at Rawalpindi was won by an innings by Pakistan. On their return from Pakistan, Bangladesh hosted a one-off Test match at Mirpur against Zimbabwe. The host was just too strong and won by an innings.
The Test series that all of India was keenly looking forward to against New Zealand was played in February-March ended in a damp squib. The home side did not allow any semblance of chance during the two-match Test series and won quite comfortably the series two-nil. This was India’s first two defeats in the ICC World Test Championship and their defeat at Wellington by 10 wickets, came after being unbeaten in their last nine Tests, that included eight victories. Their last defeat took place at Perth (lost by 146 runs) in December 2018. The Indians lost the second Test at Christchurch by seven wickets.
Then sporting events all over the globe came to a grinding halt when the coronavirus pandemic took over the world. Sri Lanka was getting ready to host England for a two-Test match series at Galle and at the SSC, Colombo in March. But the series was called off and with that Test matches for the season came to an abrupt end.
Below is a statistical survey of how the sides and the player’s performance in Tests during 2019/20-
First Test: at Visakhapatnam from 2-6 Oct 2019 (India beat South Africa by 203 runs)
Last Test: at Hagley Oval, Christchurch from 29 Feb-2 Mar 2020 (New Zealand beat India by 7 wickets)
The narrowest victories this season-
By 7 wickets – New Zealand beat India at Christchurch
By 107 runs – South Africa beat England at Centurion
Summary of results of the 25 Test matches-
By an innings: 10
By runs: 8
By wickets: 4
Drawn Tests: 3
Total individual 100s: 49
300+ scores: 1
200s (200-299) 9
150s (150-199) 6
100s (100-149) 33
Century in each innings
176 & 127 - Rohit Sharma (IND) against South Africa in Visakhapatnam
Century on debut
109* - Abid Ali (PAK) against Sri Lanka in Rawalpindi
Total Five-wicket hauls: 30
7-wicket hauls: 3
6-wicket hauls: 1
5-wicket hauls: 26
Total 10-wicket match hauls: 2