Sat, 29 Aug 2009 16:19:24 GMT

Interesting sports trivia

Cricket has been traced to shepherds in England who started playing the early forms of cricket sometime in the 17th century.


CRICKET TRIVIA

  • Cricket has been traced to shepherds in England who started playing the early forms of cricket sometime in the 17th century.
  • The first laws of cricket were written in 1774. Since then they have been changed on numerous occasions. Pretty much everything has changed since then. The early cricket bats were long curved pieces of wood resembling a thick hockey stick. The stumps consisted of two wickets and one bail in between. The only law of the game that has remained constant is the length of the pitch at 22 yards.
  • Speaking of the stumps, initially the afore-mentioned shepherds would bat in-front of a tree stump, hence the term "stumps". As the game progressed it was at times played in front of a wicket-gate - which led to the term "wickets".
  • Early bowlers would bowl the ball underarm - and cricket records tell stories of great underarm lob bowlers. Overarm bowling was initially illegal. It was introduced to cricket by a Kent cricketer, John Willes. He actually learnt it from his sister, Christina Willes who found her skirt was getting in the way when she tried to bowl underarm!
  • In 1868 an Englishman called Charles Lawrence based in Australia put together a team of aborigines and took them to England. This was the first ever Australian tour to England, and each player wore a cap of a different colour so that the spectators could identify them. The team played 47 matches against a number of local teams of which they won 14, lost 14 and drew the rest. Apart from playing cricket the aborigines showcased a number of unique sports including the backwards race, boomerang throwing and cricket ball dodging.
  • There are 10 ways in which a batsman can get out in cricket: Caught, Bowled, Leg Before Wicket, Run Out, Stumped, Handling the ball, Obstructing the field, Hit the ball twice, Hit Wicket, Timed out.
  • Sir Len Hutton is the only man to be given out Obstructing the Field in test cricket.
  • The first international cricket match was held between the US and Canada in 1844. The match was played in New York and Canada won by 23 runs.
  • In 1876-77 the English cricket team toured Australia. It is believed that the cricket tour was organized to replace a cancelled tour by Charles Dickens to Australia!
  • The match that is now recognized as the first official test match was played between Australia and England in Melbourne, March 15th - 19th 1877. Australia won by 45 runs. 100 years later many of the great English and Australian cricket legends descended upon Melbourne to watch the Centenary test match between Australia and England. After a remarkable match Australia beat England by 45 runs - the exact same margin by which they had won the inaugural match 100 years earlier.
  • Charles Bannerman of Australia set a number of records in that match. He faced the first ball in test cricket, scored the first run, the first four and the first century. He scored 165 not out in Australia's 245 all out. Of all the records he set in that match one record still holds - his 165 constituted 67.34% of Australia's total (245) - the highest percentage by a batsman in a completed test innings.
  • Allen Hill took the first wicket in test cricket when he dismissed Nat Thomson for 1.
  • Charles Bannerman, Dave Houghton (Zimbabwe) and Aminul Islam (Bangladesh) are the only cricketers to score centuries on their own and their country's test debut.
  • In January 1998 England and West Indies played the shortest ever test match. Walsh and Ambrose had reduced England to 17/3 in 75 minutes (10.2 overs) and the match was then called off due to an unsafe pitch!
  • The longest test match of all was played between England and South Africa at Durban in 1938-39. This was a timeless test which lasted for 9 days, despite which the match ended in a draw since the England players had to leave to catch the boat back to England! Set 696 runs to win in the fourth innings they had reached an astonishing 654/5 and had a real chance of winning the match when they had to leave.
  • Only two test matches have ever been tied - the first between West Indies and Australia at Brisbane in 1960-61 and the second between Australia and India in Madras in 1986-87. The smallest margin of victory is 1 run when the West Indies beat Australia at Adelaide in the 4th test of the 1992-93 series. West Indies went on to win the 5th and final test and won the series 2-1.
  • Only thrice in the history of test cricket has a team come back from following to win a test match. Strangely enough Australia has been at the receiving end on all three occasions. At the SCG in 1894-95 Australia lost by 10 runs, having scored 586 in the first innings (the highest score by a losing team) and asking England to follow-on. The second time it happened was at Headingley in 1981 when an inspired Ian Botham and a devastating Bob Willis helped England win by 18 runs. The last occasion was in 2000-01 at Calcutta when a VVS Laxman master-class helped by Rahul Dravid and Harbhajan Singh helped India win by an amazing 171 runs after following on.
  • In March 2005, India made 407 and 407/9 dec in a test against Pakistan. This is the highest "duplicate" score by a team in a test match.
  • At an individual level, 1982 Duleep Mendis of Sri Lanka scored 105 in both innings against India. He is the only batsman to hit identical hundreds in both innings of a test match.
  • Plum Warner became the first person to be knighted for his services to cricket in 1937. Jack Hobbs (1953) and Len Hutton (1956) were the next two cricket knights. Richard Hadlee (1990) is the only person to be knighted for his services to cricket while still playing test cricket. Neville Cardus was the first cricket writer to be knighted, in 1967.
  • The second day of the Lord's test match between England and West Indies in 2000 is the only time in the history of test cricket that a part of all 4 innings have been played on the same day.
  • Makhaya Ntini is the first black man to play test cricket for South Africa. Henry Olonga was the first black Zimbabwean test cricketer.CRICKET TRIVIA
  • TJ Matthews once took a hat trick in both innings of a test match.
  • The Asian test championship is a triangular/ quadrangular test tournament which started in 1998-99. However, this is not a new idea. England hosted Australia and South Africa in a triangular tournament in 1912!
  • The first one-day international was held between England and Australia at Melbourne in 1971. Actually the first four days of a test match had been rained out, so on the final day the first ever one-day international was organized. Australia won the match.
  • Geoff Boycott faced the first ball in one-day cricket - not exactly the most dashing of batsmen! Graham McKenzie was the bowler.
  • No one has ever scored 4 successive one-day centuries. Herschelle Gibbs scored 3 successive centuries, and was on 97* when South Africa needed 4 to win. Alok Kapali bowled a wide which went for 4, and Gibbs was denied the record by the tiniest of margins!
  • Anthony Stuart took 5 wickets including a hat trick in his third ODI for Australia. Strangely enough he was never picked for Australia again.
  • Sourav Ganguly is the only cricketer to have won four successive Man of the Match awards in One-day Internationals.
  • The Pakistan vs India ODI at Karachi in 2003-04 saw 693 runs being scored (a world record). India batting first scored 349/7 and Pakistan got within a whisker of pulling off an amazing run chase. They scored 344/8 with Inzamam scoring an inspirational 122.
  • At Capetown in 1992-93, the then world cup champions Pakistan were dismissed for 43 aganist the West Indies in an ODI - at that time the lowest ever. Their record was broken by Zimbabwe in 2001-02 when they scored 38 all out against Sri Lanka in 2001-02. This included the best bowling performance in ODIS - 8/19 by Chaminda Vaas. Sri Lanka then dismissed Canada for 36 in the 2002-03 world cup, but Zimbabwe wanted the record back. In 2004 they reclaimed their dubious distinction with a 35 all out, again against Sri Lanka.
  • In the early 1980s in an ODI between England and West Indies, the Windies needed 4 runs off the last ball and so England captain, Mike Brearley put all the fielders and the wicket-keeper on the fence to prevent a boundary from being scored. Fielding restrictions were then introduced in the Benson & Hedges Cup in Australia, and were adopted for all ODIs after the 1992 world cup. In 2005 these fielding restrictions have been changed in an attempt to make the game more interesting.
  • In the third match of a best of 5 finals in the Benson & Hedges cup in 1980-81 New Zealand needed 15 runs off the last over. In the first five balls Trevor Chappell dismissed Richard Hadlee and Ian Smith but conceding 8 runs. Off the last ball Brian McKechnie needed to hit a six to force a tie. Trevor's brother Greg instructed him to bowl the ball underarm. He did so, causing great furore and probably the greatest cricket controversy since the Bodyline series in 1932-33.
  • While he only played 12 tests with limited success, Alfred 'Tich' Freeman is possibly the greatest first-class bowler ever. A short leg-spin googly bowler, he took 3,776 first-class wickets (second only to Wilfred Rhodes) and is the only bowler to take 300 wickets in a single-season (in 1928). He took over 200 wickets in the next seven seasons, and remains the only man to take all 10 wickets in an innings thrice and 17 wickets in a match twice.
  • One of the greatest all-rounders in the true sense was CB Fry. He captained England at cricket, played for England in football an equaled the world long-jump record. Away from sport he was offered the Kingship of Albania, he represented India at the League of Nations, and Hitler consulted him when he was developing the Youth Programme in Germany.
  • Sir Donald George Bradman must surely be the greatest batsman of all time. In his last test innings at the Oval in 1948 he needed 4 runs to end with an average of 100. He was bowled by Eric Hollies for a duck. His test average of 99.94 and first-class average of 95.14 are both world records. His 974 runs in a single test series is also a record. He scored two triple centuries and 12 double centuries in test cricket and was once left stranded on 299*.
  • Brian Lara of the West Indies is the only other man to score two test triple centuries. He is also the only man to claim the test world record twice. He first set the world record in 1994 scoring 375 versus England at Antigua. In 2004, 6 months after Mathew Hayden had broken his world record, Lara reclaimed his record with 400*, again versus England at Antigua. That's not all, he also holds the world record first-class score of 501* for Warwickshire against Durham.
  • Bill Ponsford is the only other man to score two first-class quadruple centuries.CRICKET TRIVIA
  • Playing for Maharashtra vs. Kathiawar in 1948-49, Bhausaheb Nimbalkar had scored 443* by the end of Day 2 in a 3-day match. He was just 9 short of Bradman's first-class world record of 452* but the Kathiawar had had enough punishment and conceded the match to Maharashtra. Another theory doing the rounds is that Nimbalkar himself had to go get married and so would not have been able to bat on Day 3 anyway.
  • While Sir Don Bradman is regarded by most as the greatest batsman of all time there is still debate about who is the greatest bowler in test history. A strong contender to the title is Sydney Barnes of England who took 189 wickets in just 27 tests. He also took 24 five-fors and still holds the world record for 49 wickets in a test series (he played just 4 matches in the series). He ended his career with a bowling average of 16.43 (number 5 on the all time list) and a strike rate of 41.65 (3rd best ever). He remains the only player to be regularly picked for England while playing League cricket - for Stafforshire.
  • Another contender for the greatest test bowler title is another Englishman, George Lohmann. He has the best bowling average (an astonishing 10.75 per wicket) and the best strike rate (a wicket every 34.1 balls). He also has the third best bowling analysis of 9/28, after Laker's and Kumble's ten-fors.
  • At the Lord's test match in 1990 Graham Gooch of England scored 333 and 123 - the only time in the history of first-class cricket that a batsman scored a triple century and a century in the same match. Mark Taylor of Australia came very close to equaling this record when he scored 334* in the first innings and was dismissed for 91 in the second versus Pakistan.
  • Arthur Fagg who played for Kent is the only man to score two double centuries in the same first-class match.
  • In the same test match, India needed 454 to avoid the follow-on. At 430/9 Kapil Dev took strike against Eddie Hemmings and after two dot balls hit the next four balls for six - a record in test cricket. Next ball Narendra Hirwani was dismissed by Angus Fraser.
  • Lala Amarnath is the only person to have got Sir Don Bradman out hit-wicket in test cricket. Probir Sen is the only keeper to have stumped the Don in tests.
  • Maurice Turnbull actually was a triple international. He played cricket for England and hockey and rugby for Wales and he also won the South Wales Squash Championship! He was killed in in WW-II aged just 38.
  • RE "Tip" Foster holds the world record for the highest score on test debut. He scored 287 on test debut for England vs Australia in 1903-04. He is also the only man to captain England at both football and cricket.
  • Lawrence Rowe of the West Indies however, managed to score more runs than Foster in his first test making 214 and 100* in 1971-72. The only other cricketer to score 2 centuries on test debut is Yasir Hameed of Pakistan who made 170 and 108 against Bangladesh in 2003.
  • Playing his first test for New Zealand versus India in Calcutta (1965), Bruce Taylor scored 105 and took 5/86. He remains the only cricketer to score a century and take a five-for on test debut.
  • On first-class debut for Barbados in 1966-67 Geoff Greenidge (no relation to Gordon) scored 205 and took 7/124 against Jamaica. He was also the last white man to play test cricket for the West Indies.
  • Mohammed Azharuddin scored a century on test debut. Clearly he enjoyed the feeling. He followed it up with centuries in his next two matches and remains the only test cricketer to score three centuries in his first three tests.
  • Narendra Hirwani, playing his first test for India against the West Indies at Madras in 1998, took an astonishing 16 wickets for 136 runs. Remarkably he broke the world-record for the best debut figures by just 1 run! Bob Massie of Australia had earlier taken 16 for 137 on his debut.
  • Soon after migrating to New Zealand, Albert Moss played for Cantebury and took 10/28 in an innings. The only ten-for on first-class debut.
  • Marvan Atapattu of Sri Lanka had a rather unfortunate start to his test career. His first six test innings were 0, 0, 1, 0, 0, 0. Remarkably he forced his way back into the Sri Lankan team, and has not scored 6 test double centuries - a record for Sri Lanka.
  • Australian Arthur Chipperfield (1934), West Indian Robert Christiani (1947-48) and Pakistani Asim Kamal ( 2003-04) are the only batsman to score 99 on test debut.
  • Khalid Hasan of Pakistan made his test debut in 1954 aged just 16 years and 352 days. Four days later his test career was over and is the youngest ever one-cap wonder and played is last day of test cricket at just 16 years and 356 days - a record.
  • Legend has it that Dr. Roy Park's wife missed his entire test career because she dropped her knitting. Park was dismissed first ball in his only test innings as his wife bent down to pick up her knitting! There was more cricket in the family though, as their daughter married future Australian captain Ian Johnson.
  • Dennis Smith of New Zealand dismissed Eddie Paynter of England with his first ball in test cricket (1932-33). Unfortunately it was a bit of a false dawn. Smith never took another wicket in test cricket!
  • Jack MacBryan is probably the unluckiest test cricketer ever. In his only test for England in 1924 only 66.5 overs were possible due to rain. He is the ONLY test cricketer to have never batted, bowled or taken a catch in his entire test career!
  • At Colombo in 1996-97 India won the toss and batted first. Having scored 537/8 they declared trying to bowl Sril Lanka out for under 337. How wrong they were! Sri Lanka scored 952/6 (a test record) with Sanath Jayasuriya (340) and Roshan Mahanama (225) putting on 576 runs (a test record and 1 run short of the first-class record). They also became the only pair to bat through 2 full days of test cricket.
  • At the other end of the spectrum, New Zealand were dismissed by England for 26 at Auckland in 1954-55 - a test record for the lowest team total.
  • The highest first-class score in 1107 by Victoria vs New South Wales in 1926-27. The lowest score by a full team is 12 - by Northamptonshire vs Gloucestershire in 1907!
  • Alec Bedser took 14/99 in a test against England in 1953 - the best bowling figures by a bowler in a losing cause.
  • Ricky Ponting holds the equivalent batting record scoring 242 in a losing cause against India at Adelaide in 2003-04.
  • Australia's Clarrie Grimmet and India's Dilip Doshi are the only bowlers to take 100 test wickets having started their international careers after the age of 30.
  • One of the greatest bowlers in history, Hedley Verity took 10/10 against Nottinghamshire in 1932 - the best bowling figures in first-class history. It is also the only ten-for to include a hat trick. He died during WW-II after having being taken prisoner in Italy.
  • Who is the worst bowler is test cricket? Well that's a toughie! Statistically speaking it is Rawl Lewis of the West Indies whose three match test career saw a bowling average of 318 (the worst in test history) at a strike rate of 585. However, Roger Wijesuriya of Sri Lanka has the worst strike rate of 586 - though he has a better average of 294!
  • Mario Zagallo of Brazil won the football world cup both as a player and as coach. Geoff Marsh has achieved the same feat in cricket, winning in 1987 as a player and in 1999 as coach.CRICKET TRIVIA
  • Ken Suttle of Sussex played in 423 consecutive first-class matches between 1954 and 1969 - the longest streak by any cricketer.
  • Western Province bowler, Bob Crisp is the only bowler to have taken 4 wickets in 4 balls twice in his first-class career.
  • In 1899, 13-year old Arthur Collins scored 628* in a junior match for Clarke's House at Clifton College. This remains the highest score in any form of cricket. He then took 11 wickets to help his team beat North Tower by an innings and 688 runs! Collins never played first-class cricket and was killed in WW-I.
  • Women's Cricket - Janette Brittin of England scored 1935 runs for England in 27 tests, making 5 test centuries - both world records. Kiran Baluch of Pakistan scored 242 against the West Indies in 2003-04, a world record.
  • Charles Bannerman scored the first test century. Billy Murdoch, who played for both Australia and England scored the first test double century (he also hit the first ever six in test cricket). Andy Sandham of England scored the first triple century (in what was his last test match), and Brian Lara has scored the only quadruple century.
  • Five batsmen have been left stranded on 99* in a test match. Strangely enough this is a fairly recent phenomenon. The unlucky batsmen are Geoff Boycott, Steve Waugh, Alex Tudor, Shaun Pollock and Andrew Hall. While four of them managed test centuries, 99* is the highest test score for Alex Tudor. Mike Atherton once declared England's innings and left Grame Hick stuck on 98*. Andy Flower of Zimbabwe was left on 199* against South Africa (he added 142 in the second innings for good measure), and the greatest of them all Sir Don Bradman was once left stranded on 299*.
  • William Henry Cooper, who played the first of his two tests for Australia versus England in 1881-82, and Paul Sheahan, who made his debut in 1967-68 are the only great-grandfather great-grandson pair to play test cricket.
  • The first two twins to play in the same test match were not Steve and Mark Waugh of Australia, but Rosemary and Elizabeth Signal of New Zealand, versus England in 1984; in women's cricket!!
  • The Hadlee family has served New Zealand cricket well. Sir Richard Hadlee has captained New Zealand in test cricket. At the time of his retirement he held the world record for the highest number of test wickets, 431. His brother Dayle, and father Walter also played test cricket for New Zealand. Another brother Barry played ODIs for New Zealand. His wife, Karen has also represented New Zealand in women's cricket.
  • Steve and Mark Waugh of Australia were two of the most prolific batsmen in world cricket. They are also twins. Steve played for Australia long before Mark made it to the team. When Mark finally played for Australia it was Steve who had been dropped to make room for Mark. Steve was given the job of informing Mark. Their brother Dean also played one first-class match for New South Wales.
  • Lala Amarnath and Surinder Amarnath are the only father-son pair to have scored test centuries on debut. Strangely neither scored another test century.
  • Victor Richardson was Australia's vice-captain during the Bodyline series of 1932-33. He later went on to captain Australia. Three of his grandsons played test cricket - Ian, Greg and Trevor Chappell - with Ian and Greg also captaining Australia in test cricket.
  • The Chappells and the Grace brothers - WG, EM and GF - are the only sets of three brothers to play for the same team in the same test match. The Hearnes went one better. In 1892 at Capetown Jack and George played for England while Frank played for South Africa!
  • Four Mohammad brothers represented Pakistan - Hanif, Mushtaq, Wazir and Sadiq. A fifth brother, Raees played first-class cricket. Hanif's son Shoaib also represented the country in tests.
  • Montague Druitt was a fast bowler who played for Winchester College, Incogniti and Dorset, and was a playing member of the MCC. In 1888 he drowned himself in the Thames. Druitt was suspected to be Jack the Ripper.
  • In 1958 playing against New Zealand at Headingley England's innings were opened by a rugby player and a football player! Arthur Milton represented England in one football match (vs. Austria in 1951) and Mike Smith won one rugby cap for England (vs. Wales in 1956).
  • Making his debut for England against Bangaldesh in 2005 Chris Tremlett took two wickets in two balls. On his hat trick ball Mohammad Ashraful defended the ball which bounced on the ground, then actually landed on the stumps but the bails did not fall, and so Tremlett was denied a hat trick.
  • In a test match in Faislabad in 1997-98, Mushtaq Ahmed was bowling to Pat Symcox. Symcox missed the ball which went between the stumps knocking back middle stump. However, the heat had fused together the bails, and they did not fall. The middle stump bounced back into place and Symcox continued on his way to 81 - his second highest test score!
  • In a 1951 in a test versus England, Alex Moir of New Zealand bowled 2 successive overs, the last before tea and the first after the interval! The only other time this happened in test cricket was in an Ashes test in 1921.
  • On the 1974 tour to England, Indian opener, Sudhir Naik was accused of stealing a pair of socks from Marks & Spencers.
  • John Thayer, who played 7 first-class matches in the USA was the only first-class cricket on board the Titanic. Richard Williams, who was also on board survived and went on to win the Wimbledon doubles title in 1920.
  • Cotar Ramaswami represented India in the Davis Cup in 1922 and in 1936 made his test debut for India aged 40. In 1985 he wandered out of his home in Chennai and has never been found. He is also one of only two test cricketers to play Davis Cup tennis. The other is Ralph Legall who represented Trinidad in the Davis Cup. In addition, Asif Karim, Kenya's captain during the 1999 World Cup was also a Davis Cup player.MOTORSPORTS TRIVIA
  • The Formula 1 world championship was started in 1950. Italy's Giuseppe Farina won the first race (the British GP) and the first world championship.
  • Argentine driver Juan Manuel Fangio is possibly the greatest driver of all time. He won five world championships (1951, 1954-57) and took an astonishing 24 victories in his 51 races - the best conversion rate in history.
  • Germany's Michael Schumacher has won the F1 world drivers title 7 times (1994-95). Schumacher also holds the record for the most race wins (84), most fastest laps (69), maximum race wins in a season (13 in 2004), fastest to win a championship (after 11 out of 17 races in 2002), most points in a season (148 in 2004) and largest victory margin in a season (67 points in 2002).
  • Graham (1962, 1968) and Damon Hill (1996) of England are the only father-son pair to win the world championship.
  • Jacques Villeneuve's (world champion in 1997) father was one of the great F1 drivers. Giles won 6 races in his career and was killed in practice for the Belgian GP at Zolder in 1982. Legend has it that Enzo Ferrari, the patriarch of the Ferrari team was devastated by the loss and that he kept a photograph of Giles on his mantelpiece until his death.
  • John Surtees is the only man to win world championships on both two and four wheels. He won the F1 world championship in 1964, and won the motorcycling TT championship 11 times.
  • Oskar Schindler (of 'Schindler's List' fame) was a good motorcycle racer. Racing at the Altvater in Germany in 1928 he nearly beat the German champion Walfred Winkler, but he stopped a lap early thinking that the race was over.
  • GOLF TRIVIA
    St. Andrews - or rather The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews - is the home of golf. The Old Course at St. Andrews has been in use for over 500 years, probably the oldest sporting venue still in use today.
  • The Augusta Masters is the only major that is held at the same venue every year. The Open Championship (incorrectly referred to an the British Open) is always held at a links course.
  • Jack Nicklaus has the record for the most majors won - 18. Tiger Woods, the greatest player of his generation has already won 10 majors and is still only 29 years old.
  • Every 2 years the US players Europe for the Ryder Cup, the most highly regarded team trophy in golf. Initially it was played between the US and Great Britain & Ireland, but due to the US's sustained dominance the rest of Europe was also included.
  • The women's equivalent of the Ryder Cup is the Solheim Cup. The equivalent competition for men's amateurs is called the Walker Cup.
  • OTHER SPORTS TRIVIA
    Walter Lindrum is probably the greatest billiards player of all time. He won the world champioship in 1933 and held it until he retired in 1950. Naturally a right-handed player, he played left-handed due to a childhood injury. He held 57 world-records, many of which still stand. His break of 4137 in 1932 scored in just under 3 hours is still a world-record.
  • Bob Mathias of the US won the Olympic gold at the Decathlon at the 1948 Olympics aged just 17. He then retained his Olympic gold in 1952.
  • Despite the fact that it is played only in North America, the NBA is remarkably popular in a number of countries. Dirk Nowitski of Germany and Yao Ming of China are the most popular sportsman in their countries despite the fact that they play their sport so far away from home.
  • The America's Cup is the most prestigious trophy in the sport of yachting, and is the oldest active trophy in international sports, having started in 1851.

Source: Indiasyndicate

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