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Lowest T20 Score Ever Defended Dissertation

5 lowest totals defended in the IPL

Defending totals is difficult in T20. But defending paltry totals is a monumental effort.

Top 5 / Top 1023 Mar 2017, 22:16 IST


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KKR bowled out for 107 in the 19th  over of the second qualifier in IPL 2017 – not quite the script that Gautam Gambhir had hoped for. But it’s never over until the final run is scored.

Defending totals are not easy in T20 cricket, as India found out against West Indies in the T20 World Cup semi-finals. The biggest of targets are easily chased down in T20 given the pitch conditions across 40 overs do not matter as much as they do in the longer formats of the game.

Dew could be an issue but it generally helps the team batting second. Teams chasing have a clear sight of the target and no target seem unreachable these days. That is why low scores are very rarely defended in T20 cricket. Sample this – a score under 110 has never been defended in T20.

Just to give you an idea of how big or small that number is, the 50-over equivalent of that score (in terms of required run-rate) in ODIs is 275. It is hard to defend because a lot can happen over 50 overs but that scope reduces drastically for a 20-over game.

It doesn’t help that batsmen playing T20 cricket are generally less risk averse and hence play the game with greater braggadocio – a style that helps make the game exciting and flamboyant. Therefore, we dedicate this article to the lowest totals ever defended in T20 cricket – has to be a monumental effort. (Mind you we haven’t included matches like the one between RCB and CSK at Bangalore, 2013 when 106 was scored in just 8 overs and was defended by RCB).

#5A Sunrisers Hyderabad defending 126 against Pune Warriors, Hyderabad, 2013

Sunrisers have always been amongst the better bowling units in the IPL and they showed exactly why in the third match of the 2013 IPL. Batting first, they scored a paltry 126 on a decent batting strip with Thisara Perera top-scoring with 30 off just 18 balls. Bhuvneshwar Kumar once again was the pick of the bowlers for Pune with figures of 1/17, well supported by Rahul Sharma, who managed figures of 1/21 in his four.

Pune’s chase was, however, terrible. They got off the blocks slowly and then lost wickets in a hurry. After being steady at 36 for no loss in the 7th over, Pune dropped to 50 for 4 by the 12th.

A brief partnership later, the collapse started again as they went from 83 for 4 to 104 all out in the 19th over. Dale Steyn was sensational with a spell of 3/11 in his 3.5 overs cleaning up the Pune lower order over a span of four balls. Amit Mishra was also top class with figures of 3/19 in his 4 overs. Eventually, SRH won by a comfortable 22 runs.

IPL 2018Chennai Super KingsSunrisers HyderabadKings XI PunjabMumbai IndiansRoyal Challengers BangalorePune Warriors India CricketSachin TendulkarIrfan PathanAmit MishraKumar SangakkaraDale SteynMuttiah Muralitharan

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Roberts, Holding, Croft and Garner decimated England for 125 at St. Vincent © Getty Images

Low-scoring one-day internationals are becoming increasingly rare as the years roll by. And successful defences of small scores have almost become an extinct species. In the 1980s and 1990s, a score of 200 was challenging and 300 was Everest, nowadays 250 is defendable and 300 is a brisk climb for a skilled hiker. Since 2000, only on six occasions has a team defended a target of 175 or below and only Zimbabwe and West Indies have been unable to chase targets below 150. This week, we look at the lowest totals that have been successfully defended in ODIs.

India's 125 at Sharjah in 1985 is the lowest score that has been defended in ODIs. Having lost the finals of the Benson and Hedges World Championship in Melbourne a couple of weeks earlier, Imran Khan was bent on revenge as he savaged India with 6 for 14. In reply, Pakistan capitulated meekly with only four batsmen getting double figures and only Rameez Raja passing 20 as Pakistan were all out for 87, their lowest score against India. Sharjah's early days were pretty low-scoring. It took nine matches for a team to pass 200 and a whopping 29 ODIs for a score of 250 plus.

England's famous 1980-81 tour of West Indies began with a defeat that ranks second in our table. West Indies, without Vivian Richards, had been dismissed for 127 and debutant Everton Mattis had made more than half of the runs. England, up against Andy Roberts, Michael Holding, Colin Croft and Joel Garner, had inched to 14 for no loss before four wickets tumbled for one run. Croft eventually finished with 6 for 15 as England fell short by two runs.

India126/50.08732.5v PakistanSharjah1984/85ODI 321
West Indies128/50.012548.2v EnglandKingstown1980/81ODI 115
South Africa130/50.011543.4v EnglandEast London1995/96ODI 1042
Kenya135/44.06922.5v ZimbabweHarare2005/06ODI 2343
Zimbabwe135/50.012549.1v EnglandAlbury1991/92ODI 748
Zimbabwe139/50.09131.5v West IndiesSydney2000/01ODI 1675
South Africa141/50.013647.0v West IndiesCape Town1992/93ODI 804
Pakistan141/49.013238.5v West IndiesAdelaide1981/82ODI 126
Pakistan147/50.011044.3v New ZealandAuckland1993/94ODI 891
South Africa150/45.011138.0v EnglandJohannesburg1999/00ODI 1560
Pakistan150/50.012041.3v AustraliaHobart1996/97ODI 1160
Pakistan152/50.011940.1v ZimbabweSharjah1996/97ODI 1196
New Zealand154/43.014441.3v EnglandAuckland1996/97ODI 1182
New Zealand157/50.014749.1v Sri LankaDambulla2003ODI 2014
New Zealand159/50.015449.1v West IndiesGeorgetown1995/96ODI 1090
  • Click here for the full tables

    Another remarkable match which doesn't appear in the tables because it was curtailed to 30 overs a side is the clash between Australia and West Indies at the SCG in 1992-93. The umpires decided on a reduced match even though both captains felt that the pitch was dangerous after three days of incessant rain. "Exciting, if unreal" was how Wisden described the cricket that followed. Jones' 21 was the top score of the match as Australia made 101 for 9. West Indies, in reply, could manage only 87 and Mark Taylor, in his first match as captain, was adjudged Man of the Match for four quality catches at slip.

    Slower team beating a faster team in Tests

    The increased pace of scoring has also permeated Test cricket. The theory is that batting at a fast clip allows teams to pile up massive scores and yet have ample time to bowl the opposition out. We look at the vice versa - when slower teams have beaten the faster ones.

    The first Test in the table was played on a wicket that became sticky after the first day in which England made 221 for 2. Rain ruined the second day and, on the third, England were bowled out for 315 in 152.5 overs. It was often the tactic to throw your bat on a sticky wicket and Australia folded for 122 in 30.2 overs of which Victor Trumper made 74. Chasing an improbable 297 after England were dismissed for 103, Australia could only manage 111.

    With an unassailable 4-1 lead, Australia had already won the Frank Worrell Trophy before the final Test at the MCG in 1975-76. And after the first three innings, West Indies were hurtling towards a 1-5 thrashing. Ian Redpath scored 101 and 70 in what would be his final Test. Lance Gibbs breaking Fred Trueman's record for the most Test wickets was West Indies' brightest moment as they faced a stiff 492 to win with over ten hours to play. Richards and Clive Lloyd, however, made a dash for it smashing 98 for 103 balls and 91 not out off 88 balls. However, they were eventually dismissed for 326.

    England2.30v Australia3.88Melbourne1903/04Test 79-1.58
    Australia2.90v West Indies4.29Melbourne1975/76Test 770-1.39
    Pakistan3.08v Sri Lanka4.37Karachi1999/00Test 1489-1.29
    Australia2.02v West Indies3.26Georgetown1954/55Test 405-1.25
    England2.56v Australia3.79Sydney1932/33Test 224-1.22
    South Africa2.97v New Zealand4.15Centurion2005/06Test 1798-1.19
    England2.12v Australia3.30The Oval1953Test 376-1.18
    England3.22v Australia4.38Sydney2002/03Test 1636-1.16
    South Africa2.84v Australia3.95Adelaide1910/11Test 113-1.12
    England2.71v West Indies3.79Port of Spain1967/68Test 635-1.08
    England2.69v Australia3.75The Oval1938Test 266-1.06
    Australia2.21v England3.25Nottingham1981Test 903-1.05
    Australia2.53v England3.57Manchester1896Test 51-1.04
    Australia1.39v England2.43Melbourne1891/92Test 35-1.04
    Pakistan3.16v India4.16Lahore2003/04Test 1695-1.00
    Australia2.45v West Indies3.43Port of Spain1964/65Test 590-0.98

    Statistics upto and including:
    • Test # 1808: West Indies v India at Kingston, 4th Test, Jun 30-Jul 2, 2006
    • ODI # 2391: Netherlands v Sri Lanka at Amstelveen, 2nd ODI, Jul 6, 2006

  • Click here for the full tables

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    George Binoy is editorial assistant of Cricinfo