11 Oct Pendulum Cricket Test Match overview September 2017
The perfect score!
Three hundred runs is fast becoming the new 400 and an acceptable amount of runs per Test Match innings. In the two Tests played in early October 2017 South Africa scored 573/4d which turned out to be a mammoth score as their Bangladesh visitors could only amass one innings over two hundred runs in return, Bangladesh ended by losing this 2nd Test by a whopping innings and 254 runs.
The second Test in October had Pakistan batting second and scoring back to back innings of 262 and 248, no doubt and doubly sure way below par. Even though Sri Lanka did not enforce the follow on having scored 482 runs in their first innings, their paltry 2nd innings of 96 almost cost them pure embarrassment entering them into the record books for all the wrong reasons. It was lowly but enough thanks to their strong above par first innings lead.
One good session may not win you a Test Match, but a bad session can lose you one! However Sri Lanka scoring 96 in the latter innings of the abovementioned Test Match still meant they won the game by 68 runs. A case of one good innings Test score was sufficient to win the game as they excelled well above the “new” benchmark of 300 runs.
Furthermore it must be noted that some teams are winning the toss in Test cricket and choosing to bowl, this new age thought perhaps induced by what they are noticing out in the field and that is scores above 400 are becoming few and far apart.
Herewith the past 9-Test innings scores with potentially 36 batting innings. The combined Test teams scored above 300 on only eleven occasions:
- TM2278 SL 482 & 96 PAK 262 & 248
- TM2277 SA 573/4d BAN 147 & 172
- TM2276 SA 496/3d & 247/6d BAN 320 & 90
- TM2275 SL 419 & 138 PAK 422 & 114
- TM2274 WI 123 & 177 ENG 194 & 101/1
- TM2273 BAN 305 & 157 AUS 377 & 87/3
- TM2272 BAN 260 & 221 AUS 217 & 244
- TM2271 ENG 258 & 490/8d WI 427 & 322/5
- TM2270 ENG 514/8d WI 168 & 137
The captains of yesteryear always chose to bat when the opportunity arose. They would aim to occupy the crease for about 125 overs (drinks break, between Tea and Dinner on Day Two) and batting at a modest 3.3 runs per over would take them just above the 400 run barrier. Entrusting their well-rested bowlers to defend their batsmen’s valiant efforts. Perhaps the game is changing and the concentration levels no longer apparent to carve out mammoth scores with the advent of T20 cricket, but runs on the board still wins you the game!
“I once heard an old cricket follower suggest that there was a saying that if you won the toss, 9 times out of 10 you should bat first, and the tenth time you should think about putting the other team in, and then bat first.” This saying was by Alan Border.