Home > Features > Facts and figures >

Mark Craig and other batsmen who smashed six off first ball faced in an innings

Mark Craig gave a glimpse of his batting skills by smashing the first ball he faced for a six
Mark Craig (center) gave a glimpse of his batting skills by smashing the first ball he faced for a six. Photo Courtesy: Black Caps Twitter Account

Apart from having an all-round excellent debut with the ball, Mark Craig achieved the unique feat of hitting the very first ball he faced in international cricket for a six. Shiamak Unwalla looks at some of the players who have hit sixes, while facing up to their first ball in Tests.

While it is not unheard of for batsmen to hit sixes in Test cricket, it is rather uncommon to see as many sixes hit in a Test match as there would be in a Twenty20 (T20). In a format, where there is usually enough time to settle in, most batsmen prefer to play conventional cricket.

However, every once in a while due to either the match situation, a rush of blood or supreme confidence, a batsman will look to go big right from the start. Below is a list of the innings in which a batsman has hit his first ball for a six. Bear in mind, these are innings where a batsman had hit the first ball he faced for six. If his first scoring shot was a six, it has not been counted.

Batsman Bowler
George Ulyett (England) Tom Garrett (Australia)
Tim Wall (Australia) Dick Tyldesley (England)
Foffie Williams*** (West Indies) Jim Laker (England)
Hines Johnson (West Indies) Bob Berry (England)
Frank King** (West Indies) Ron Archer (Australia)
Neil Adcock (South Africa) Johnnie Wardle (England)
Antao D’Souza (Pakistan) Len Coldwell (England)
Vanburn Holder (West Indies) Barry Knight (England)
John Jameson (England) Keith Boyce (West Indies)
Greg Chappell (Australia) David Steele (England)
Gus Logie (West Indies) Mohinder Amarnath (India)
Ian Botham (England) Craig McDermott (Australia)
Aravinda de Silva* (Sri Lanka) Kapil Dev (India)
Sanath Jayasuriya (Sri Lanka) Phil Tuffnell (England)
Chris Cairns (New Zealand) Nehemiah Perry (West Indies)
Muttiah Muralitharan (Sri Lanka) Shaun Pollock (South Africa)
Paul Wiseman (New Zealand) Kumar Dharmasena (Sri Lanka)
Brian Lara (West Indies) Brett Lee (Australia)
Muttiah Muralitharan (Sri Lanka) Irfan Pathan (India)
MS Dhoni (India) Pedro Collins (West Indies)
Greame Smith* (South Africa) Zaheer Khan (India)
Peter Fulton (New Zealand) Mohammad Ashraful (Bangladesh)
Muttiah Muralitharan (Sri Lanka) Chris Martin (New Zealand)
Shakib Al Hasan (Bang) Pragyan Ojha (India)
Morne Morkel (South Africa) Daniel Vettori (New Zealand)
Zaheer Khan (India) Tim Southee (New Zealand)
Chris Gayle* (West Indies) Sohag Gazi (Bangladesh)
Sachin Tendulkar*** (India) Nathan Lyon (Australia)
Mark Craig (New Zealand) Suleiman Benn (West Indies)

*First ball of the innings. ( Chris Gayle’s was the first ball of the match, and the first ball bowled by Sohag Gazi in Test cricket.)

**Out next ball.

***Hit first two balls for six.

Data courtesy: Charlie Davis

The first recorded instance of a batsman hitting the first ball for a six was back in the nineteenth century when English batsman George Ulyett hit the Australian bowler Tom Garrett for a six. The latest instance of course, was Mark Craig taking on Suleiman Benn.

Rather strangely, among the 28 recorded instances, eight first-ball sixes have been scored against an English bowler. Conversely, West Indian batsmen have hit their first ball for a six on seven occasions. The full break-up of how many sixes teams have hit and how many the teams have conceded is given below:

Batsmen  Bowlers
West Indies – 7 England – 8
Sri Lanka – 5 Australia – 5
New Zealand – 4 India – 5
South Africa – 3 West Indies – 4
England – 3 New Zealand – 3
India – 3 Bangladesh – 2
Australia – 2 Sri Lanka – 1
Pakistan – 1 South Africa – 1
Bangladesh – 1

Zaheer Khan is the only player to make an appearance in both lists. He hit a six off Tim Southee, and was hit by Graeme Smith for a six earlier in his career.

Arguably the most shocking aspect of the table is that one batsman has hit three first-ball sixes in his career. In a table with names like Gayle, Sanath Jayasuriya, Sachin Tendulkar and MS Dhoni, it boggles one’s mind that the batsman who features most often in the list is Sri Lankan spin wizard, Muttiah Muralitharan. Muralitharan has successfully hit first-ball sixes off Shaun Pollock, Irfan Pathan and Chris Martin. Move over Gayle and Dhoni. If you want to smash a six off the first ball you face, call Muralitharan!

(Shiamak Unwalla is a reporter with Cricket Country. He is a self-confessed Sci-Fi geek and Cricket fanatic who likes to pass his free time by reading books, watching TV shows, and eating food. Sometimes all at the same time. You can follow him on twitter at @ShiamakUnwalla)

India tour of Australia 2014, Practice matches

Nov 24, 2014 (05:29 IST)   at Glenelg, Adelaide

Pakistan vs New Zealand in UAE, 2014

Nov 26, 2014 (11:30 IST)   at Sharjah

India tour of Australia 2014, Practice matches

Nov 28, 2014 (05:29 IST)   at Adelaide

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Nov 28, 2014 (12:00 IST)   at Dhaka

Afghanistan tour of UAE, 2014

Nov 28, 2014 (15:30 IST)   at Dubai

More

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Nov 26, 2014  at Dhaka

Bangladesh won by 124 runs

England tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Nov 26, 2014  at Colombo

Sri Lanka won by 25 runs

Hong Kong tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Nov 24, 2014  at Colombo

Hong Kong won by 2 wkts

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Nov 23, 2014  at Chittagong

Bangladesh won by 68 runs

South Africa tour of Australia, 2014

Nov 23, 2014  at Sydney

Australia won by 2 wickets (D/L method)

Photos

Phil Hughes suffers head injury: In photos

Videos

Phil Hughes passes away: Video tribute

Phillip Hughes passes away: Let us bring Sean Abbott back on track

Phil Hughes and other cricketers who succumbed to on-field injuries

Phillip Hughes 7th-youngest Test cricketer to die

Phillip Hughes: A brief look at the career of one of Australia’s most promising talents

Phillip Hughes: Rest in peace

Australia England India India tour of Australia 2014-15 IPL 2013 spot-fixing controversy New Zealand New Zealand tour of UAE 2014 New Zealand vs Pakistan 2014 Pakistan Pakistan vs New Zealand Pakistan vs New Zealand 2014 Phil Hughes Phil Hughes Death Phil Hughes head injury Phillip Hughes

Phil Hughes passes away: Former England cricketers feels for Sean Abbott

Phil Hughes passes away: Sourav Ganguly expresses grief

Bengal announce 14-member squad for Col CK Nayudu tournament

Phillip Hughes passes away: Sri Lanka Cricket expresses grief

Phil Hughes to be remembered during Australia-England Rugby International

Phil Hughes: Remembering his most memorable knocks

Phillip Hughes passes away: Kolkata is where Kolkata was

Phillip Hughes passes away: Crying for Phillip Hughes

Phillip Hughes passes away: Let us bring Sean Abbott back on track

Phil Hughes and other cricketers who succumbed to on-field injuries

Fan of the Day

Niharika Shah

Niharika Shah

682 Posts | 6 Fans

Video: Phil Hughes suffers head injury, collapses on field during New South Wales vs South Australia tie

Phil Hughes: Remembering his most memorable knocks

More broadband connections to boost GDP growth in Asia Pacific: GSMA

Ungli quick movie review: Emraan Hashmi and Randeep Hooda shine in the slick youthful entertainer

सुबह गुनगुना पानी पीने के छह फ़ायदे

Phillip Hughes passes away: Sri Lanka Cricket expresses grief

Bigg Boss 8: Find out what did Ali Quli Mirza say about Sonali Raut!

सर्दी के दिनों में त्वचा को स्वस्थ रखने के कुछ सरल उपाय

India is becoming our largest overseas market, Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun says

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here