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Cricket Buzz: Oldest living Test cricketer turns 103!

Last updated on: August 06, 2014 11:50 IST

Cricket Buzz: World's oldest living Test cricketer Gordon turns 103!

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The world's oldest living Test cricketer, South Africa's Norman Gordon, turned 103 on Wednesday.

Friend and former Test cricketer Ali Bacher was quoted by Sport24, as saying that Gordon is undefeated at 103, and jocularly added that old age is catching up with him.

Gordon represented South Africa in five Test matches in the 1938/39 season, and is the sole survivor from the "Timeless Test", played against England in Durban in March 1939.

The famous match spanned 10 days and still ended in a draw.

Gordon was in the middle of bowling his 93rd over when the teams finally decided to call it a day as the England team had to dash to catch the mail boat home.

His 92.2, eight-ball, overs bowled in that Test, equating to a mammoth 738 balls, still stands as the most number of balls bowled by a fast bowler in a Test match.

His Test career ended prematurely with the start of the World War II and he only played a handful of matches after the war before retiring at the end of the 1948/49 season.

Bacher said he had hoped to take Gordon out for lunch on his birthday, but he was not well enough to go out. 

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Image: Norman Gordon with Makhaya Ntini, Shaun Pollock, Fanie de Villiers, Peter Pollock, Neil Adcock and Mike Procter during the 100th birthday celebrations in Johannesburg in 2011
Photographs: Duif du Toit/Gallo Images/Getty Images

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Lanka paceman Lakmal ruled out of Pakistan series

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Sri Lanka paceman Suranga Lakmal will miss the Pakistan Test series due to an ankle injury, dashing the home team's hopes of fielding their most potent new-ball partnership in the opening match on Wednesday.

"Lakmal has sustained severe swelling above his left ankle following the second Test against South Africa and unfortunately he is out of the series," Sri Lanka captain Angelo Mathews told a pre-match news conference on Tuesday.

The injury to Lakmal, who was named in the 15-man squad for the two-match series pending a late fitness Test, comes at a unfortunate time as it coincides with the return of new ball partner Shaminda Eranga.

Eranga had eight stitches in the webbing of his right hand, an injury he sustained in the first Test against South Africa at Galle three weeks ago and missed the rest of the series.

"Either Eranga or Suranga has been injured since the Bangladesh series (in February), so we haven't have both of them together... which would have been a very formidable attack," Mathews said.

"But I still have a good (pace) attack in Dhammika Prasad and Nuwan Pradeep.

"They've bowled pretty well in the recent past and the two spinners, Rangana Herath and Dilruwan Perera, have been bowling magnificently.

"I feel that I've got the bowling attack to take 20 wickets," he added.

Following their maiden Test series win in England in June, Sri Lanka lost the two-Test home series against South Africa 1-0.

"In the second Test against South Africa we were almost going to win it, unfortunately the weather gods had other ideas," Mathews said.

"Pakistan has been a very hard team to beat wherever they play... we expect a bigger challenge from them definitely.

"They've got a very well balanced team and they've got some good batters, good spinners and good fast bowlers.

"It's going to be a tough series for us."


Image: Suranga Lakmal of Sri Lanka
Photographs: Francois Nel/Getty Images

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