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India vs England 2014, 4th Test at Manchester: Pankaj Singh on the verge of breaking record for longest wicketless run in Tests

Pankaj Singh was added to the Indian playing eleven after Ishant Sharma got ruled out of the third Test at Southampton due to an injury © AFP
Pankaj Singh was added to the Indian playing eleven after Ishant Sharma got ruled out of the third Test at Southampton due to an injury © AFP

Aug 09, 2014

Indian pacer Pankaj Singh found himself eyeing one of Test cricket’s most unwanted records after a return of none for 79 in 17 overs on the second day of the fourth Test against England at Old Trafford on Friday.

The tall paceman’s return of none for 179 in England’s 266-run victory in the third Test at Southampton, a result that levelled the five-match series at 1-1, saw him record the most expensive figures by a Test match debutant without a wicket. Added to his Friday figures that left the 6ft 6in Singh with an overall Test record of none for 258.

Only Bangladesh medium-pacer Anwar Hossain Monir, with none for 307 in three matches from 2003-2005, has conceded more runs without taking a Test wicket. Worryingly for Singh, who might have had several wickets at Southampton but for dropped catches and questionable umpiring decisions, he appeared to bowl less well on Friday.

Not everyone in this ‘ladder of shame’ was primarily a bowler. For example West Indies’ George Headley, one of the greatest batsmen cricket has known, bowled his leg-breaks in 14 Test innings without taking a wicket.

Worst wicketless Test careers (player, country, span, matches, innings, balls, runs, economy rate):

Anwar Hossain Monir (BAN) (2003-2005):  3-3-348-307 5.29

Pankaj Singh (IND) (2014): 2-3-384-258 4.03

George Headley (WI) (1930-1954): 22-14-398-230 3.46

Alamgir Kabir (BAN) (2002-2004): 3-4-261-221 5.08

Habibul Bashar (BAN) (2000-2008): 50-9-282-217 4.61

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