When we ruled the cricket world

Kapi-Mana News - - SPORT -

After Kane Wil­liamson and BJ Watling’s hero­ics at the Basin Re­serve, I was go­ing to list all the world records New Zealand crick­eters have set. But it’s be­come a night­mare. New Zealand is some­times a cricket min­now but our play­ers have been set­ting world records for decades and there are dozens of them. Even omit­ting first- class cricket ( sorry, Bert Sut­cliffe), Twenty20 (sorry, Bren­don McCul­lum) and one-day in­ter­na­tion­als (sorry, Corey An­der­son), there’s a for­mi­da­ble list of test record­hold­ers.

So, in the spirit of com­pro­mise, here (in or­der) are my 10 favourite world records in­volv­ing our test crick­eters:

Richard Hadlee, 431 wick­ets when he re­tired in 1990. Our crick­et­ing knight didn’t hold the record long and Shane Warne and Mut­tiah Mu­ralitha­ran re­ally rushed past him but when Hadlee set his record in 1988, it was a proud mo­ment.

Kirsty Flavell, 204 against Eng­land at Scar­bor­ough in 1996. Flavell be­came the first woman to score a test dou­ble cen­tury after 62 years of tests. Since then four oth­ers have done so.

Brian Hast­ings/ Richard Collinge, 151 runs for the 10th wicket against Pak­istan at Auck­land in 1973. The un­likely stand saved the test and re­mained the 10th wicket world record un­til 2013. Collinge’s 68 not out was also the best for a test No 11 bats­man.

An­drew Jones/ Martin Crowe, third- wicket part­ner­ship of 467 against Sri Lanka at Wellington in 1991. Their stand not only saved a test but was the high­est for any wicket in a test, and the high­est for the third wicket in all first-class cricket. Crowe made 299 while Jones made 186.

Kane Wil­liamson/ BJ Watling, sixth wicket part­ner­ship of 365 against Sri Lanka at Wellington in 2015. Wil­liamson (242 not out) and Watling (142 not out) bat­ted 112 overs to turn a des­per­ate po­si­tion into a win­ning one.

Bren­don McCul­lum/ BJ Watling, sixth wicket part­ner­ship of 352 against In­dia at Wellington in 2014. They came to­gether as New Zealand faced de­feat and added 352 over the next nine hours and 123 overs to save the match. McCul­lum made 302 and Watling scored 124.

Ian Smith, 173 against In­dia at Auck­land in 1990. Smith res­cued a dire sit­u­a­tion when he smashed 173 off 136 balls on the open­ing day of the test. It re­mains the high­est score by a No 9 test bats­man.

Nathan As­tle, 222 against Eng­land at Christchurch in 2002. As­tle needed only 153 balls to reach his dou­ble-cen­tury, eas­ily the fastest in tests ( though McCul­lum nearly beat it in Auck­land last month).

Chris Cairns, 87 test sixes when he re­tired in 2004. When Cairns signed off, he had smote three more sixes than pre­vi­ous record-holder Vi­vian Richards. Adam Gilchrist holds the record with 100 but McCul­lum, on 92, will surely soon own it.

John Reid, 58 con­sec­u­tive tests from 1949 un­til 1965. Reid, the strong­man of New Zealand cricket, never missed a test through his 16year ca­reer. His record has since been dwarfed but at the time spoke vol­umes for his dura­bil­ity.

So there’s my top 10, with apolo­gies to Craig McMil­lan, Danny Mor­ri­son, the seven bats­men who smashed 22 sixes in New Zealand’s 690 against Pak­istan in Shar­jah in Novem­ber, Chris Martin, Richard Hadlee ( for omit­ting his other feats), Jimmy Nee­sham, Stephen Flem­ing and oth­ers with world test record claims.

One record def­i­nitely not in my top 10 is New Zealand’s dis­missal for 26 against Eng­land at Auck­land in 1955. It’s a record no team would want, but has stood firm dur­ing the 1703 tests that have fol­lowed.


Bat­ting he­roes: BJ Watling, left, and Kane Wil­liamson cel­e­brate their world record part­ner­ship at the Basin Re­serve.

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