Monday, 4 January 2016

The 6th Wicket Club - who rates highest? Enter the Gingas

For the 3rd time in 2 years, the venerated world record for the 6th wicket in all test cricket has been smashed.

 England were 223 for 5 when Bairstow and Stokes entered the fray.  In a matter of hours they created history by becoming the new record holder for the 6th wicket, setting a new mark at 399.  In so doing, New Zealand born Ben Stokes also helped himself to the second fastest double ton in history of test cricket.  New Zealand's Nathan Astle still holds that record (coincidentally versus England.)

What of Bairstow??  Unlike the other wicketkeeper batsman who shared two records, BJ Watling, there didn't appear to be any great things coming from Bairstow.  His maiden test century came on the back of several scores between 40 and 80, but no indication he'd bat for a long period and stick around to secure a world record.  Kudos to him then for the effort.

So let's put these records side by side and compare them.  The first was BJ Watling(124) and Brendon McCullum(302) 352 at the Basin Reserve against India, a home game.  The following year against Sri Lanka BJ Watling again (142*) and Kane Wiliamson (242*) set a new mark of 356 also at The Basin Reserve.  And now we have England's Stokes/Bairstow smashing that mark.  If you look at the
records analytically, there would only be one winner.  The two NZ records are in their own right special as both were achieved from a position of adversity.  England already had a healthy lead.  You have to rate England's as they have the record and did it away from home, but I'm waxing lyrical here, the first is the best.  In that test, Brendon achieved that unreachable 300 mark in NZ test cricket.  And he was backed up by twin centuries, Jimmy Neesham and BJ assisting him.

Sorry England. On paper you have it but let's not forget - Ben Stokes is a Kiwi, albeit a Ginga one.

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