At Hove in 2000 Michael Bevan (left) and Richard Montgomerie added 292 and 265; they are the only pair to put up two 250-run stands in the same match © Getty Images

At Hove in 2000 Michael Bevan (left) and Richard Montgomerie added 292 and 265; they are the only pair to put up two 250-run stands in the same match © Getty Images

Marc Dawson, in his most interesting book Inside Edge, presents this very informative chart about two double-hundreds by the same pair of batsmen for the same wicket in the same First-Class match.

Stands

Wicket

Batsmen

Team

Against

Venue

Season

220

286

1st

Bert Sutcliffe

Don Taylor

Auckland

Canterbury

Auckland

1948-49

222

282

1st

Paul Pollard

Tim Robinson

Nottinghamshire

Kent

Trent Bridge

1989

227

220

1st

Graham Gooch

John Stephenson

Essex

Northamptonshire

Northampton

1990

292

265

2nd

Richard Montgomerie

Michael Bevan

Sussex

Nottinghamshire

Hove

2000

257

228*

1st

Marcus Trescothick

Arul Suppiah

Somerset

Yorkshire

Taunton

2011

In this narrative, we are concerned mainly with the fourth set of figures from the top. A brief profile of the protagonists may be in order here.

Richard Montgomerie was born July 3, 1971 at Rugby, and was a right-hand batsman and an off-break bowler. In a First-Class span of 251 matches from 1991 to 2007, he represented Oxford, Northamptonshire and Sussex, scoring 14,337 runs with a highest of 196 and an average of 35.84. He had 29 centuries and 80 fifties and held 248 catches.

Michael Bevan, of course, needs no introduction. Beyond the international arena, however, he represented South Australia, New South Wales, Yorkshire, Sussex, Leicestershire, Kent, and Tasmania (and they used to call Vijay Manjrekar ‘The Wanderer!’).

Bevan is one of 13 men to have represented three states in Sheffield Shield; his 10,621 Shield runs are fourth in history, while his 42 hundreds are second; and his 1,464 runs in 2004-05 is the second-most in Shield history for most runs in a season.

Now that we have a fair idea about the personnel involved in the record-setting match, let us proceed to the events of the match itself.

It was a Division 2 Championship match between Sussex and Nottinghamshire, played at Hove in July 2000. Jason Gallian won the toss for Nottinghamshire and put Sussex in to bat.

Sussex got off to a cautious start with Montgomerie and Michael Peirce at the top of the order. The first wicket went down at 45, with Peirce being dismissed for 18. Bevan walked in, and as has always been the case and the score began to mount steadily.

The second-wicket stand realised 292 runs from 68 overs with both Montgomerie (133) and Bevan (166) achieving their highest individual scores for the county till date. Bevan fell at 337, having scored his 166 from 213 balls faced in about 300 minutes with 20 fours.

Montgomerie fell in the very next over, with the total at 341. His 133 had come off 255 balls faced with 19 fours. Bevan was in fine form, having scored 533 runs in his last 7 innings, and this 166 was his second successive hundred after his 151 not out against Essex.

Day One ended with Sussex on 405 for 5 in 104 overs. The innings ended at 472 with skipper Chris Adams scoring 55 and Paul Reiffel taking 4 for 85 for Nottinghamshire.

In their first innings Nottinghamshire scored 344, with John Morris getting 76 of the runs, and Gallian contributing 44. Nottinghamshire had been on 240 for 3 at one stage but quickly slipped to 265 for 8, and then to 344, in the face of some quick bowling by James Kirtley (6 for 90).

In the Sussex second innings, the first wicket fell before any runs were on the board, Peirce having been dismissed for a duck. It was the old firm of Montgomerie and Bevan that took up the challenge.

It was the occasional left-arm spinner Usman Afzaal who finally made the breakthrough, having Montgomerie caught by wicketkeeper Chris Read for 95. This time round, the second-wicket stand had realised 265.

All this while, Bevan was calmness personified and went about his run-scoring as if on a mission. His difficult chance to Paul Johnson at cover when on 140 was the only blemish in an otherwise pristine knock of 174, which was to be his highest ever individual score for Sussex.

Between them, Montgomerie and Bevan had scored 558 runs in this match, and had had second-wicket stands of 292 and 265 in the game. Till date, this is the only instance in First-Class cricket where the same two batsmen have had partnerships in excess of 250 runs in each innings of the same match and for the same wicket, as can be seen from the chart above.

This was also Bevan’s third century in consecutive innings for Sussex.

Sussex declared their second innings closed at 278 for 3 at the fall of Bevan’s wicket, setting Nottinghamshire a target of 407 for an outright win. Day Three ended with Nottinghamshire on 19 for no loss, requiring 388 runs on the last day.

Nottinghamshire almost pulled it off, scoring 379 for 8 at the end of the high-scoring draw, with Gallian (120) and Morris (115) both scoring centuries and sharing a third-wicket stand of 222.

When Afzaal was eighth man out at the total of 374, there were still 5.4 overs to play out. Well, Reiffel (9) and Andrew Harris (2) ensured an honourable draw and 10 Championship points for Nottinghamshire from the game.

Brief scores:

 Sussex 472 (Richard Montgomerie 133, Michael Bevan 166, Chris Adams 55; Paul Reiffel 4 for 85) and 278 for 3 decl. (Richard Montgomerie 95, Michael Bevan 174) drew with Nottinghamshire 344 (Darren Bicknell 45, Jason Gallian 44, John Morris 76, Usman Afzaal 43; James Kirtley 6 for 90) and 379 for 8 (Jason Gallian 120, John Morris 115, Usman Afzaal 54; Umer Rashid 4 for 93).

(Pradip Dhole is a retired medical practitioner with a life-long interest in cricket history and statistics)