Ben Stokes set the world record for most runs scored before lunch on a single day in the history of Test cricket © Getty Images (File Photo)
Ben Stokes set the world record for most runs scored before lunch on a single day in the history of Test cricket © Getty Images (File Photo)

Little did South Africa expect what was in store for them on Day Two of the second Test of the Basil D’Oliveira Trophy 2015-16 at Newlands, Cape Town. They had, after all, reduced England to 167 for 4, and later, 223 for 5, on Day One. Ben Stokes and Jonny Bairstow had then played out the rest of the overs. Day One had finished with England on 317 for 5 with Stokes on 74 and Bairstow on 39. South Africa were hit so hard and so early when play resumed on Day Two that by the time they realised what had hit them, England had already put 400 on the board. They went to lunch on 513 for 5, adding 196 in the pre-lunch session. FULL SCORECARD: South Africa vs England, 2nd Test at Cape Town

While Bairstow played beautifully, adding 56 to his overnight 39 to reach 95 by lunch, Stokes was on another planet. He went after the bowlers, connecting everything, hitting ferociously, and adding 130 in the first session. It was carnage of the highest order, but it also made for spectacular viewership. Stokes had finished Day One on 74 from 93 balls; his 130 on the second morning took a mere 74. Ben Stokes overtakes Virender Sehwag to record 2nd fastest Test double ton

In the process Stokes set the world record for most runs scored before lunch on a single day in the history of Test cricket.

Most runs before lunch in a day of Test cricket

Runs Batsman Team Against Venue Season
130 Ben Stokes England South Africa Newlands 2015-16
123 Les Ames England South Africa The Oval 1935
119 AB de Villiers South Africa India Centurion 2010-11
118 Warren Bardsley Australia South Africa Lord’s 1912
116 Clem Hill Australia South Africa Old Wanderers 1902-03

Interestingly, all instances have taken place in either England (London, specifically) or South Africa. The record outside these two countries took place in 2003-04 at Bulawayo, when Brian Lara had slammed 114.

Note:

– For the second session, the world record is with Denis Compton, who had scored a whopping 173 between lunch and tea against Pakistan at Trent Bridge, 1954. However, in the earlier days, the second (and hence, third) session was often flexible. If an innings break coincided with lunch, there was often no tea-break.

In the last 30 years, the world record for the second session lies with Virender Sehwag, who scored 109 at Lahore in 2005-06.

– For the third session, the world record is with Ian Smith, who had slammed 140 after tea against India at Eden Park, 1989-90.