Don Bradman was the highest run getter for seven calendar years © Getty Images (File Photo)
Don Bradman was the highest run getter for seven calendar years © Getty Images (File Photo)

Kumar Sangakkara topped the Test cricket batting chart of 2014 with Brendon McCullum and Angelo Matthews following him. Michael Clarke was the topper in the previous two years (2012 and 2013). Bharath Seervi lists the highest Test run-getters in each calendar year since 1877 and some other facts.

Kumar Sangakkara, with 1,438 runs from 21 innings at 71.90, was the leading Test run-getter in 2014. This was only the third time that a Sri Lankan has achieved the same. Sanath Jayasuriya (1,271 at 66.89) was the top run-getter in 1997 and Thilan Samaraweera (1,234 runs at 72.58) in 2009.

Year

Batsman

Team

M

Inns

R

HS

Ave

100s/50s

1877

Charles Bannerman

Australia

2

4

209

165*

69.66

1/0

1879

Alec Bannerman

Australia

1

1

73

73

73.00

0/1

1880

WG Grace

England

1

2

161

152

161.00

1/0

1881

Tom Horan

Australia

1

2

150

124

75.00

1/0

1882

George Ulyett

England

4

8

365

149

45.62

1/2

1883

Allan Steel

England

3

5

218

135*

54.50

1/0

1884

Percy McDonnell

Australia

4

6

366

124

61.00

2/1

1885

Arthur Shrewsbury sr

England

4

7

275

105*

55.00

1/1

1886

Arthur Shrewsbury sr

England

3

4

243

164

60.75

1/0

1887

Harry Moses

Australia

2

4

116

33

29.00

0/0

1888

Billy Barnes

England

3

4

90

62

22.50

0/1

1889

Bobby Abel

England

2

3

189

120

94.50

1/0

1890

JJ Lyons

Australia

2

4

122

55

30.50

0/1

1892

JJ Lyons

Australia

3

6

287

134

47.83

1/1

1893

Arthur Shrewsbury sr

England

3

5

284

106

71.00

1/2

1894

George Giffen

Australia

2

4

277

161

69.25

1/0

1895

John Brown

England

3

6

231

140

57.75

1/0

1896

Arthur Hill

England

3

4

251

124

62.75

1/1

1897

KS Ranjitsinhji

England

1

2

183

175

183.00

1/0

1898

Joe Darling

Australia

4

6

429

178

71.50

2/0

1899

Tom Hayward

England

5

7

413

137

68.83

2/1

1901

Archie MacLaren

England

1

1

116

116

116.00

1/0

1902

Clem Hill

Australia

12

21

1060

142

55.78

2/7

1903

Tim Foster

England

1

2

306

287

153.00

1/0

1904

Victor Trumper

Australia

4

8

388

113

48.50

1/3

1905

Stanley Jackson

England

5

9

492

144*

70.28

2/2

1906

Gordon White

South Africa

5

9

437

147

54.62

1/2

1907

CB Fry

England

3

5

221

129

44.20

1/1

1908

Warwick Armstrong

Australia

4

8

359

133*

51.28

1/1

1909

Warren Bardsley

Australia

5

10

396

136

39.60

2/0

1910

Aubrey Faulkner

South Africa

7

14

862

204

66.30

2/4

1911

Victor Trumper

Australia

5

10

583

214*

72.87

2/2

1912

Jack Hobbs

England

9

14

832

187

64.00

3/3

1913

Herbie Taylor

South Africa

2

4

186

109

46.50

1/0

1914

Jack Hobbs

England

3

6

338

97

67.60

0/3

1920

Jack Hobbs

England

2

4

250

122

62.50

1/1

1921

Herbie Collins

Australia

9

14

730

203

56.15

2/2

1922

Herbie Taylor

South Africa

1

2

197

176

98.50

1/0

1923

Jack Russell

England

4

7

436

140

62.28

2/1

1924

Jack Hobbs

England

5

7

527

211

75.28

2/2

1925

Herbert Sutcliffe

England

4

7

560

176

80.00

3/1

1926

Jack Hobbs

England

5

7

486

119

81.00

2/2

1927

Herbert Sutcliffe

England

2

4

271

102

90.33

1/1

1928

Wally Hammond

England

9

14

879

251

67.61

2/3

1929

Wally Hammond

England

6

12

702

177

78.00

4/1

1930

Don Bradman

Australia

6

8

978

334

122.25

4/0

1931

Don Bradman

Australia

7

9

950

226

105.55

5/0

1932

Don Bradman

Australia

3

3

402

299*

402.00

2/0

1933

Wally Hammond

England

8

11

934

336*

103.77

3/2

1934

Don Bradman

Australia

5

8

758

304

94.75

2/1

1935

Bruce Mitchell

South Africa

7

14

579

164*

52.63

2/1

1936

Wally Hammond

England

4

6

645

231*

161.25

3/0

1937

Don Bradman

Australia

3

5

690

270

138.00

3/0

1938

Wally Hammond

England

6

9

666

240

74.00

2/3

1939

Len Hutton

England

6

11

728

196

72.80

2/3

1946

Don Bradman

Australia

2

2

421

234

210.50

2/0

1947

Denis Compton

England

9

15

1159

208

82.78

6/3

1948

Don Bradman

Australia

8

13

1025

201

113.88

5/2

1949

Len Hutton

England

7

12

800

206

66.66

3/3

1950

Neil Harvey

Australia

5

9

584

151*

83.42

3/2

1951

Len Hutton

England

10

18

903

156*

64.50

2/6

1952

Vijay Hazare

India

9

13

576

146*

52.36

1/4

1953

Neil Harvey

Australia

8

15

948

205

63.20

4/3

1954

Denis Compton

England

11

16

830

278

55.33

2/4

1955

Clyde Walcott

West Indies

5

10

827

155

82.70

5/2

1956

Peter Richardson

England

6

10

491

117

49.10

2/2

1957

Colin Cowdrey

England

9

14

701

154

50.07

3/4

1958

Garry Sobers

West Indies

8

13

1299

365*

144.33

6/3

1959

Colin McDonald

Australia

8

13

671

170

61.00

2/2

1960

Garry Sobers

West Indies

7

12

864

226

78.54

4/1

1961

Ken Barrington

England

10

18

1035

172

73.92

4/5

1962

Ted Dexter

England

10

14

982

205

75.53

2/7

1963

Ken Barrington

England

11

20

1015

132*

53.42

3/5

1964

Bobby Simpson

Australia

14

26

1381

311

60.04

3/7

1965

Ken Barrington

England

10

16

895

163

59.66

2/6

1966

Garry Sobers

West Indies

7

11

895

174

99.44

3/5

1967

Ken Barrington

England

6

10

750

148

93.75

3/3

1968

John Edrich

England

10

17

894

164

52.58

2/5

1969

Doug Walters

Australia

8

13

909

242

75.75

5/3

1970

Ian Redpath

Australia

6

12

530

171

58.88

1/3

1971

Sunil Gavaskar

India

7

14

918

220

83.45

4/5

1972

Glenn Turner

New Zealand

5

8

672

259

96.00

2/2

1973

Keith Fletcher

England

12

21

1085

178

63.82

2/9

1974

Dennis Amiss

England

13

22

1379

262*

68.95

5/3

1975

Ian Chappell

Australia

10

18

982

192

61.37

2/7

1976

Viv Richards

West Indies

11

19

1710

291

90.00

7/5

1977

Greg Chappell

Australia

10

18

736

121

40.88

2/3

1978

Sunil Gavaskar

India

8

14

1099

205

91.58

5/3

1979

Sunil Gavaskar

India

17

26

1407

221

54.11

4/8

1980

Greg Chappell

Australia

10

18

953

235

59.56

2/5

1981

Geoff Boycott

England

13

26

975

137

40.62

3/4

1982

Ian Botham

England

14

22

1095

208

49.77

3/6

1983

Sunil Gavaskar

India

18

32

1310

236*

46.78

5/5

1984

Gordon Greenidge

West Indies

15

24

1179

223

58.95

4/2

1985

Allan Border

Australia

11

20

1099

196

64.64

4/2

1986

David Gower

England

14

25

1059

136

44.12

2/6

1987

Dilip Vengsarkar

India

9

14

875

166

87.50

4/3

1988

Viv Richards

West Indies

11

17

867

146

51.00

2/6

1989

Mark Taylor

Australia

11

20

1219

219

64.15

4/5

1990

Graham Gooch

England

9

17

1264

333

79.00

4/5

1991

Graham Gooch

England

9

17

1040

174

65.00

3/5

1992

David Boon

Australia

8

16

812

135

54.13

4/1

1993

David Boon

Australia

16

25

1241

164*

62.05

4/7

1994

Michael Atherton

England

13

23

1136

144

49.39

4/5

1995

Brian Lara

West Indies

12

20

1222

179

67.88

4/6

1996

Alec Stewart

England

8

14

793

170

61.00

2/5

1997

Sanath Jayasuriya

Sri Lanka

11

19

1271

340

66.89

3/7

1998

Alec Stewart

England

16

31

1222

164

43.64

2/7

1999

Sachin Tendulkar

India

10

19

1088

217

68.00

5/4

2000

Inzamam-ul-Haq

Pakistan

12

19

1090

142

60.55

4/6

2001

Matthew Hayden

Australia

14

25

1391

203

63.22

5/5

2002

Michael Vaughan

England

14

26

1481

197

61.70

6/2

2003

Ricky Ponting

Australia

11

18

1503

257

100.20

6/4

2004

Justin Langer

Australia

14

27

1481

215

54.85

5/4

2005

Ricky Ponting

Australia

15

28

1544

207

67.13

6/6

2006

Mohammad Yousuf

Pakistan

11

19

1788

202

99.33

9/3

2007

Jacques Kallis

South Africa

9

17

1210

186

86.42

5/6

2008

Graeme Smith

South Africa

15

25

1656

232

72.00

6/6

2009

Thilan Samaraweera

Sri Lanka

11

20

1234

231

72.58

4/4

2010

Sachin Tendulkar

India

14

23

1562

214

78.10

7/5

2011

Rahul Dravid

India

12

23

1145

146*

57.25

5/4

2012

Michael Clarke

Australia

11

18

1595

329*

106.33

5/3

2013

Michael Clarke

Australia

13

26

1093

187

47.52

4/3

2014

Kumar Sangakkara

Sri Lanka

11

21

1438

319

71.90

4/8

Team wise-distribution of top Tests run-getters in a calendar year

Count Team
53 England
41 Australia
9 India
8 West Indies
7 South Africa
3 Sri Lanka
2 Pakistan
1 New Zealand

Batsmen from England (53) and Australia (41) lead the table. But in the last 15 years (since 2000) only once has an Englishman lead the table.

Being the top Test-run getter in a calendar year most frequently (twice or more)

Count Batsman
7 Don Bradman
5 Jack Hobbs
Wally Hammond
4 Ken Barrington
Sunil Gavaskar
3 Arthur Shrewsbury sr
Garry Sobers
Len Hutton
2 Alec Stewart
David Boon
Denis Compton
Graham Gooch
Greg Chappell
Herbert Sutcliffe
Herbie Taylor
Viv Richards
JJ Lyons
Michael Clarke
Neil Harvey
Ricky Ponting
Sachin Tendulkar
Victor Trumper

Being among top three Test run-getters in a calendar year most times (four times or more)

Count Batsman
8 Jack Hobbs
Wally Hammond
7 Don Bradman
Herbert Sutcliffe
Colin Cowdrey
5 Greg Chappell
Herbie Taylor
Ken Barrington
Len Hutton
Peter May
Sunil Gavaskar
4 Archie MacLaren
Alec Stewart
Allan Border
Brian Lara
David Boon
Ted Dexter
Michael Atherton
Monty Noble
Percy McDonnell
RT Ponting
SR Tendulkar
VT Trumper

Don Bradman was the highest run getter for seven calendar years, but never ended as the second-highest or the third-highest run getter in any year. Similarly for Garry Sobers, who was the highest run-getter thrice.

Highest run getter for two or more consecutive years

No. of years Batsman Years
3 Don Bradman 1930, 1931 & 1932
2 Arthur Shrewsbury sr 1885 & 1886
JJ Lyons 1890 & 1892
Jack Hobbs 1914 & 1920
Wally Hammond 1928 & 1929
Sunil Gavaskar 1978 & 1979
Graham Gooch 1990 & 1991
David Boon 1992 & 1993
Michael Clarke 2012 & 2013

Very few matches were played when Arthur Shrewsbury and JJ Lyons topped the charts. There was no cricket in the year 1890, while 1915 to 1919 were ruined by World War I.

Most runs in a year to end up as the second highest run getter in that year (1300 or more runs)

Year Batsman Team M R HS Ave 100s
2008 Virender Sehwag India 14 1462 319 56.23 3
2010 Virender Sehwag India 14 1422 173 61.82 5
2002 Sachin Tendulkar India 16 1392 193 55.68 4
1979 Gundappa Viswanath India 17 1388 179 57.83 5
2005 Matthew Hayden Australia 15 1380 138 53.07 5
2004 Damien Martyn Australia 14 1353 161 56.37 6
2003 Brian Lara West Indies 10 1344 209 74.66 5
2006 Kevin Pietersen England 14 1343 158 53.72 4

Given the volume of cricket in recent past the number of players scoring over 1,000 runs in a year has increased substantially. As a result Virender Sehwag scored over 1,400 runs in a calendar year twice to end up on the second spot in that year. He has never ended up as the highest-run getter in a calendar year.

Batting average of 100 or more in a calendar year by the highest run getter (Min. 5 test matches)

Year Batsman Team M R HS Ave 100s
1958 Garry Sobers West Indies 8 1299 365* 144.33 6
1930 Don Bradman Australia 6 978 334 122.25 4
1948 Don Bradman Australia 8 1025 201 113.88 5
2012 Michael Clarke Australia 11 1595 329* 106.33 5
1931 Don Bradman Australia 7 950 226 105.55 5
1933 Wally Hammond England 8 934 336* 103.77 3
2003 Ricky Ponting Australia 11 1503 257 100.2 6

It is to be noted that Sobers had scored only 472 runs from 14 Tests in his first four years of Test cricket (1954 to 1957). In the next year, in 1958, he scored 1,299 runs from eight tests at 144.33 with six centuries.

Lowest batting average to end up as the highest run getter in a year (Min. of 5 Tests)

Year Player Team Mat Runs HS Ave 100s
1909 Warren Bardsley Australia 5 396 136 39.6 2
1981 Geoff Boycott England 13 975 137 40.62 3
1977 Greg Chappell Australia 10 736 121 40.88 2
1998 Alec Stewart England 16 1222 164 43.64 2
1986 David Gower England 14 1059 136 44.12 2
1983 Sunil Gavaskar India 18 1310 236* 46.78 5
2013 Michael Clarke Australia 13 1093 187 47.52 4
1956 Peter Richardson England 6 491 117 49.1 2
1994 Michael Atherton England 13 1136 144 49.39 4
1982 Ian Botham England 14 1095 208 49.77 3

Clarke, the top run-getter of 2012, averaged 105.55 (one of the highest) and in 2013 averaged 47.52 (one of the lowest).

Highest difference between top two run-getters in a calendar year

Difference Year Player Team M R HS Ave 100s
686 1976 Viv Richards West Indies 11 1710 291 90 7
Sunil Gavaskar India 11 1024 156 53.89 4
615 1958 Garry Sobers West Indies 8 1299 365* 144.33 6
Conrad Hunte West Indies 8 684 260 52.61 3
Rohan Kanhai West Indies 8 684 256 52.61 1
510 1933 Wally Hammond England 8 934 336* 103.77 3
Douglas Jardine England 7 424 127 42.4 1
445 1974 Dennis Amiss England 13 1379 262* 68.95 5
Tony Greig England 14 934 148 44.47 4
445 2006 Mohammad Yousuf Pakistan 11 1788 202 99.33 9
Kevin Pietersen England 14 1343 158 53.72 4
424 1963 Ken Barrington England 11 1015 132* 53.42 3
Ted Dexter England 11 591 73 31.1 0

(Bharath Seervi is a cricket statistician who is obsessed with digging numbers, facts and records related to the game. An active member of Society of Cricket Statisticians of India, he blogs at www.cricketseervistats.blogspot.com. He can be followed on Twitter at www.twitter.com/SeerviBharath and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/SeerviCricket)