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Have a cricket-related question? Ask the expert

Last updated on: July 8, 2011 14:30 IST

Have a cricket-related question? Ask the expert

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Have a question relating to cricket and did not know who to ask? Now you can bounce your statistical queries off Rediff's resident expert. 

Each week, Rajneesh Gupta will pick ten cricket-related questions readers send him and provide answers.

Your queries should be addressed to: rgcricket@gmail.com. Rajneesh's answers the first set of questions received from readers:

Three players made their debut for India at Kingston. When was the last time India gave debuts to three players in the same Test? - Arindam Chatterjee, Kolkata

Virat Kohli, Praveen Kumar and Abhinav Mukund made their Test debut for India at Kingston. A total of 270 players have now appeared for India in Test cricket.

The last time three Indians made their debut in a Test was against England at Mohali in December 2001, when Sanjay Bangar, Iqbal Siddiqui and Tinu Yohannan became 240th, 241st and 242nd players respectively to appear in a Test for India.

The last time India fielded three debuts in an overseas Test was also against England, at Birmingham, in 1996, when Sunil Joshi, Paras Mhambrey, Venkatesh Prasad and Vikram Rathore made their Test debut.

There were two previous occasions of India fielding three debutants in a Test against the West Indies (at Bombay, Brabourne stadium, in 1958-59 and at Madras in 1987-88).

However, only once before India handed debuts to two players in a Test in the Caribbean -- way back in 1970-71, also at Kingston, when Kenia Jayantilal and Pochiah Krishnamurthy made their debuts. So three debuts at Kingston is a new record for India in the Caribbean.


Image: Sanjay Bangar

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Raina-Harbhajan partnership contributed 59.34% of India's total

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The seventh-wicket partnership of Suresh Raina and Harbhajan Singh contributed 146 runs in India's total of 246 at Kingston. Does this partnership hold the record of making highest contribution for the seventh-wicket in a Test innings? -Sandeep Sharma, Chandigarh

The Raina-Harbhajan partnership contributed 59.34% of India's total. This is the sixth highest contribution by a seventh-wicket partnership in a completed Test innings.

The highest percentage contribution is 68.57%, which was made when Australia's Jack Lyons and Charlie Turner added 48 runs for the seventh wicket against England at Manchester way back in 1888, as team was bundled out for only 77.

Interestingly, Harbhajan was also involved in another dominating seventh wicket partnership just a few months back. Against New Zealand at Ahmedabad in November 2010, Harbhajan added 163 runs with VVS Laxman in India's total of 266 -- a contribution of 61.27 -- fourth highest in Test cricket.


Image: Harbhajan Singh

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Raina takes over from Symonds

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I remember when Shahid Afridi made his Test debut, he had already appeared in 60-plus  one-day internationals -- a record at that time. Does he still hold the record of playing most one-day internationals before playing a Test? - Girish Bowlekar, Mumbai

Afridi indeed held this record as he had played 66 ODIs before making his Test debut against Australia at Karachi in 1998. The record has since changed hands thrice -- from Adam Gilchrist (76) to Andrew Symonds (94) to Suresh Raina (98).


Image: Suresh Raina

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SCG has the longest streak of decisive matches

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It was reported after India's win that the last 12 Tests played at Kingston's Sabina Park have all produced results. I was wondering which Test ground has seen most consecutive results? - Farooq Ahmed, Lucknow

The first 37 Tests played at the Sydney Cricket Ground, between February 1882 and February 1947, did not include a single draw, with Australia winning 22 and losing 15 of them. This is the longest streak of decisive matches for a Test ground.

The Melbourne Cricket Ground comes second with 31 result-oriented Tests between December 1882 and February 1937.


Image: Sydney Cricket Ground

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Bedi's amazing feat

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Which Indian bowler took at least one wicket in most consecutive Test innings? Who holds the corresponding record in one-day internationals? - Akshay Rawat, New Delhi

It turns out that Bishan Singh Bedi is the holder of this proud record in Test cricket. Between July 1971 and January 1977, Bedi took at least one wicket in 42 consecutive innings in which he got to bowl.

Anil Kumble comes second with 33, between June 2006 and April 2008. Javagal Srinath is third, with a wicket in 30 consecutive innings between June 1996 to January 1999.

Kumble holds the ODI record with a wicket in 23 consecutive innings between August 1997 and September 1998. Srinath is second on this list too, with 22 innings between December 1997 and January 1999.

Venkatesh Prasad had a sequence of 19 consecutive innings between September 1996 and February 1997.

Who played the highest innings on captaincy debut in a Ranji Trophy match? - Bharath Kumar, Chennai

Prakash Bhandari -- a right handed batsman -- holds this record. Captaining Delhi for the first time against Patiala, Bhandari made 227 at Patiala in 1957-58, which till date is the highest score for a player making his captaincy debut in Ranji Trophy.


Image: Bishen Singh Bedi

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Steve Waugh's unique double

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What is the highest identical score made by a batsman in both innings of a Test? - Debashish Roy, Kolkata

Sri Lanka's Duleep Mendis made an identical 105 in both innings of Madras (now Chennai) Test against India in 1982-83. He remains the only batsman to score two centuries of same score in a Test.

West Indies' Alvin Kallicharan made 80 in both innings against England at The Oval in 1973. Pakistan's Majid Khan made 79 in both innings of the Wellington Test in 1972-73.

Australia's Steve Waugh remains the only batsman to make identical scores of 25 or more in a Test on THREE occasions -- 25 v New Zealand at Wellington in 1989-90, 32 v India at Melbourne in 1999-00 and 47 also v India at Chennai in 2000-01.


Image: Steve Waugh

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Martin record the fastest pair in Test cricket

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Which batsman has registered a duck in both innings of a Test on most occasions? Who bagged the fastest pair in Test cricket? -- Brijesh Pandey, Aurangabad

Five batsmen -- India's Bhagwat Chandrasekhar, West Indies' Courtney Walsh, West Indies' Mervyn Dillon, Sri Lanka's Marvan Atapattu and Muttiah Muralitharan -- have bagged four pairs each in Test cricket. However, it is New Zealand's Chris Martin who holds the dubious distinction with six instances.

Pakistan's Mohammad Ghazali holds the record of bagging the fastest pair (timed from the start of first innings to dismissal in the second innings).

Ghazali's two ducks against England at Manchester in 1954 came in 120 minutes. Australia's Neil Harvey (124 minutes), Zimbabwe's Mark Vermeulen (152 minutes), and India's Pankaj Roy (164 minutes) are the others to bag a pair within three hours.


Image: Chris Martin

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