I was wondering about “purple patches” for players. For example, which batsman scored 1000 Test runs in the fewest innings at any stage of his career? asked Martin Kingston from England
You don’t usually have to look beyond Don Bradman for this kind of record, and indeed he still holds the mark – he scored more than 1000 runs in eight innings between March 1929 (when he scored 123 and 37 not out in the final Test against England in Melbourne, and the 1930 Ashes series in England, in which he made 8, 131, 254, 1, 334 and 14. The Don added 232 in the final Test in 1930, finishing with 974 runs, still a record for any series.
Four other batsmen have amassed 1000 runs in the space of nine Test innings, most recently Alastair Cook, between November 2010 and June 2011. The others were Garry Sobers (February to December 1958), Mohammad Yousuf (July to November 2006), and Kumar Sangakkara (December 2006 to December 2007).
Sunil Narine recently took his 300th wicket in T20 matches. Was he the first to get there? asked Juan Castro from Chile
The West Indian spinner Sunil Narine’s 300th T20 wicket came up recently in Bangladesh, when he dismissed Worcestershire’s Ross Whiteley during the match between Dhaka Dynamites and Sylhet Sixers in Mirpur.
Narine is actually the third bowler to reach 300 in T20 matches. Top of the list is another West Indian, Dwayne Bravo, who has 387 wickets as I write: he reached 300 while playing for Gujarat Lions in the 2016 IPL. The Sri Lankan fast bowler Lasith Malinga comes next with 325. The next to get there will probably be the tangle-footed Pakistani Sohail Tanvir, who currently has 277 wickets.
Jason Holder recently scored a Test century from No. 9. Has any other Test captain done this? asked Allan Alexander from the United States
Jason Holder made 110 after coming in at No. 9 during West Indies’ recent second Test against Zimbabwe in Bulawayo. This was the third occasion a Test captain had made a hundred from so low in the order – and the other two were both by the same man. Shaun Pollock scored 111 for South Africa against Sri Lanka in Centurion in January 2001, and a couple of months later added 106 not out against West Indies in Bridgetown.
There have been 12 Test centuries by captains batting at No. 8, three of them by Daniel Vettori and two by MS Dhoni. Top of that list is Wasim Akram’s 257 not out for Pakistan against Zimbabwe in Sheikhupura in 1996-97.