What has been India’s record when both Kumble and Harbhajan appear together in Tests?

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20 Jan 2021 | 03:33 AM
authorMohandas Menon

What has been India’s record when both Kumble and Harbhajan appear together in Tests?

In this series, your cricket-related queries will be answered by our expert statistician

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What has been India’s record when both Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh appear together in Tests? Have they been as successful as Ashwin and Jadeja in away Test matches? – V Karthik on Twitter.

Their first Test match together was on 25 March 1998 at Bangalore against Australia, when Harbhajan Singh appeared in a Test for the first time as a 17-year-old. Since then, Anil Kumble and Harbhajan in tandem have appeared in 54 Tests until their final stint together in October 2008, which also was at Bangalore and against Australia. During this period, they have been a part of 21 Test wins, 12 losses and 21 drawn matches for India. Based on these stats, I would like to mention here that the spin combination of Ashwin and Jadeja have been by far the most successful for India in Tests matches both at home and away. (please refer to my previous column dated 28 December 2020).

Which batsman has most Test centuries without ever making a score in the nervous 90s? – R Shriram on Facebook

That distinction goes to the great Don Bradman, who despite making 29 Test centuries, never made a score in the nervous 90s. His highest two figure Test score is the 89 he made against England at Lord’s in June 1948. The table below lists all such Test batsmen.

Note: Among current players, other than Asad Shafiq (listed above), both Dinesh Chandimal and Tom Latham have 11 Test centuries each and are yet to make a score in the 90s.  

In the recent Test match at Christchurch, Pakistan’s Shan Masood made ducks in each innings while facing 33 balls. Is this the most balls faced by a Test batsman while making a pair? – Azhar Khan on Twitter.

Several players have the dubious distinction of facing the maximum number of balls while bagging a pair (i.e. ducks in each innings). The current record (where data for balls faced are available) is held by Englishman Jimmy Anderson, who faced 61 balls in two innings (6+55) against Sri Lanka at Leeds in June 2014 while registering a pair! He remains the only Test batsman to face over fifty balls while making two ducks in the same match. For Pakistan, only Abdur Rauf faced more balls (39) than Shan Masood when he made a pair against Sri Lanka at Colombo RPS in July 2009. However, Shan Masood now holds the record of having faced the maximum number of balls for an opening batsman in Test cricket. The table below has the details of all such opening batsmen.

Note: The details provided in the above table are restricted to where data for balls faced are available.

Who are the bowlers to have the distinction of claiming most top-middle order wickets of batsmen from batting positions 1 to 6 in Test cricket? – Lalit Sood on Twitter.

That distinction goes to Sri Lanka’s offie M Muralitharan, now the only Test bowler to claim over 400 top-middle order wickets of batsmen from batting positions from 1 to 6. This also means that 54.88% of his 800 career wickets have been top-middle order batsmen. The next best is pacer James Anderson with 398 wickets. However, among bowlers with 200 or more Test wickets, Sri Lankan left-arm pacer Chaminda Vaas leads the list with the highest percentage (71.27) of top-middle order wickets during his career. Another bowler of similar style, India's Zaheer Khan with 70.24% top-order wickets is just behind Vaas.  The tables below have all the details for the bowlers with most wickets and the highest percentage of top-middle order wickets.

+ also appeared in a Test for the ICC

Note: Only bowlers with minimum 200 career Test wickets qualify to the second table

** 56 of the 66 career wickets of Pakistan’s Mudassar Nazar are top-order batsmen. This gives him a very high percentage of 84.85% of top-middle order victims.  

All records mentioned above are correct and updated as on 19 January 2021.

If you have any cricket-related questions, then ask them using the #AskMohan and #StatsBurst hashtags on our social media channels. Reputed statistician, Mohandas Menon will be answering the selected questions.

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IndiaSri LankaHarbhajan SinghAnil Radhakrishna KumbleMuttiah MuralitharanWarnakulasooriya Patabendige Ushantha Joseph Chaminda VaasShan Masood KhanPakistan tour of New Zealand, 2020/21

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