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Test cricket's unbroken bowling records

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Roar Rookie
7th September, 2019

Cricket is all about numbers, facts and figures. Being a cricket lover, my favourite in Test matches is the Ashes, as it’s the battle between two old rivals of cricket history, much like India and Pakistan.

Every sport in this world has records, and cricket has them in plenitude. Reaching a milestone is not an easy task, and breaking the milestone is another level of difficulty. There are some records in international Test cricket that can never be broken.

Muttiah Muralitharan’s 800 Test wickets
A great record for this Sri Lankan spin wizard, one of the greatest legends in the history of cricket. He played his debut Test match against Australia on 28 August 1992 and his last Test ended on 22 July 2010, which was played against India.

One particularly memorable day was 22 July 2008, when the maestro took his 800th Test wicket on the final ball of his Test career. His 800 Test wickets came out in just 133 matches, which is why he is one of the most fascinating players of all time.

Australia’s Shane Warne is close to this record, but he retired years ago, so this record will always be unbreakable.

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James Charles Laker’s ten wickets in an innings
It’s rare to achieve such a record in Test cricket and it’s not easy for any bowler to do it. There are a few instances in Test cricket where you might have seen a couple of bowlers reach nine wickets in an innings, but this man, James Charles Laker, took ten wickets in one innings against Australia at Old Trafford in 1956. Actually he achieved his milestone in the second innings of that match, as he missed in his first innings, falling short by one wicket.

In the same match he took 19 wickets in total and conceded just 90 runs. This is another record for the highest wickets taken in any Test match. So far this record is unbreakable by any bowler. England won that Test match by an innings and 170 runs.

Alf Valentine with 75 maidens in a Test match
These days we see a lot of aggressive batting. Every batsman wants to smash it to the covers for a six or a four or for a quick single to keep the strike rotating. But this West Indian holds the record of bowling 75 maiden overs in a Test match against England in 1950. He also holds a record of bowling 49 maidens in an innings, which is exceptional and highest by any international bowler in a Test match. If you calculate all the maidens conceded by all the bowlers in one match, 75 maidens is still an unbeatable record.

George Lohmann 9-28 is the best bowling figures in the Test history
George Lohmann, the right-arm medium pacer, picked up nine wickets in just 14.2 overs, conceding 28 runs, against South Africa in 1986. This is the best figure so far. In all the three innings he played against South Africa he took a total of 24 wickets in that match.


Sonny Ramadhin bowled 774 balls in a Test match
Indian-originating West Indies cricketer Sonny Ramadhin holds the record of bowling 774 balls in a Test match against England in 1957. This is the highest number of balls bowled in a Test match so far by any bowler. He also holds another record of bowling 588 balls in the second innings of the same match.