Sachin Tendulkar played his seventh one-day international in Nagpur on Wednesday – and scored his lowest total ever on that ground!
Little Maestro managed just four runs, from a single boundary, before falling to Peter Siddle and failing for the first time to reach double figures at the Vidarbha stadium.
Stephen Cook’s 390 national record this weekend highlights a feature lacking in our national cricket – a complete inability by Proteas players to score triple centuries!
Stephen and his father Jimmy, who made 313 not out for Somerset in 1990, are the only father-and-son to achieve triple centuries in the first-class game. But on an international level, SA lags badly.
The highest score while playing for South Africa was 277, by Graeme Smith, followed by Daryll Cullinan (275 not out), Gary Kirsten (275) and Graeme Pollock (274).
Australia boast five players who scored six triple centuries – Don Bradman made two, 334 and 304, and the most recent was Matthew Hayden with 380.
England also have five players, the most recent being Graham Gooch (333) in 1990. West Indies have four players topped by Brian Lara with the world record 400 not out, a notorious innings that cost his team the chance of a victory against England. Chris Gayle (317) is also on their list.
All three of the main sub-ccontinent teams have achieved triple centuries. For India, Virender Sehwag is the only player to have reached the milestone, and he’s done this twice – scoring 319 and 309 (surprisingly, Sachin Tendulkar is not there, but then again, neither is Jacques Kallis).
Pakistan have three players, including Younus Khan (313), while Sri Lanka have two, captain Mahela Jayawardene (374) and Sanath Jayasuriya (340).
Like South Africa, New Zealand have nobody, although their top-scorer, Martin Crowe, got out on a heart-breaking 299.
Only Zimbabwe (Dave Houghton with 266) and Bangladesh (Mohammad Ashraful with 158 not out) have lower top scores than South Africa.
Admittedly, SA’s ranking does not rest on having a triple centurion, but it would be nice to join the club.
A Pakistani parliamentarian is accusing his team of throwing Champions Trophy matches in South Africa – against Australia and New Zealand.
Personally, I thought you’d have a better case arguing the Australians had tried their level best to lose against Pakistan, losing wickets regularly in what had seemed a regulation run-chase at one point (not that I think the Aussies were trying to lose the match).
Check out the full story here.
I can recall as a 14-year-old rugby fan going to Stellenbosch one Saturday afternoon to watch the club team I supported, Villagers, take on Victorians, Maties’ second team.
Villagers won the match, I think 30-21, but they lost the try count 4-3. A win may have been a win, but there was always a menacing element to being on the wrong side of the try count statistic. That’s probably because I was brought up on the principle that rugby is about scoring tries. Luckily for me, Villagers tightened up their defence and they never leaked that number of tries again that season, going on to clinch the Western Province league as well as the knockout competition.
I admit that the game of rugby is substantially different now to what it was back then, but even still, I couldn’t help but wonder if there was something to be read into Saturday’s Tri-Nations match – comfortably won by the Boks 29-17, but with Australia taking the try count 2-1.
I wonder what will happen when the Boks get matched up front and have to use their backs to swing the match? The lack of creativity behind the pack (with the exception of the phenomenal Fourie du Preez) is a worrying factor for me. Yes, Victor Matfield’s try was a superb piece of play, sparked by John Smit’s grubber, but it’s a sad day when the forwards possess more flair than the backs.
Long may the Bok pack – and Morne Steyn’s boot – rule the rugby park!