2015 Test Century Watch – #30 – Murali Vijay


Murali Vijay – 150 v Bangladesh at Fatullah

Second for Murali. Second highest score ever made in tests at Fatullah. Second Indian to make a test hundred at Fatullah. But another in the big ton bracket I like to see, and thus providing some of the more interesting stat work.

I’ve done a fair bit on India in Bangladesh in the Shikhar Dhawan piece, so we can concentrate on this one a bit. This was the 15th century made in Bangladesh by an Indian, and the 4th highest, trailing Sachin, Shikhar and Rahul Dravid (160). It was Vijay’s sixth test match hundred and his third highest, trailing 167 against Australia in Hyderabad, and 153 against Australi in Mohali (once again, in alliance with Dhawan). The lowest of his six hundreds is 139. Impressive DBTA numbers. He has made the fifth century at Fatullah, and this is his fourth country in which he’s made three figures (India, Australia and England the others).

So, Dmitri, any scores of 150 that you’ve seen? I know I’ve seen a 149, but not a 150, I don’t think. But it hasn’t been a long time since the last one… Imrul Kayes did it a month or so ago. As I mentioned the first ever 150 in that post, let’s look at the second ever score of 150 (this is the 31st, by the way)…

The scorer of the first, Jamie Zulch was in 1911, and we had to wait another 41 years before the next. The scorer of it was one of our finest ever players, Len Hutton, against India at Lord’s. England won the match quite comfortably, as India’s modest first innings score of 235 was overwhelmed by Hutton, and then put firmly to bed by Godfrey Evans who made a rapid lower order hundred. Vinoo Mankad, how made 72 in the first innings, followed it up with 184 in the second, but England got home by 8 wickets, with Hutton adding 39 unbeaten runs to his first innings 150.

England owed much to Hutton. Quite early he appreciated that the conditions were unfavourable to slow bowlers and he called for a prolonged effort from his three seamers. The second day was dominated by Hutton, who not only scored 150 but, when he was second out at 264 after batting five and a quarter hours, his side were already 29 runs to the good. It was his first Test century against India and the second hit by an England captain since the war–F. G. Mann scored 136 not out against South Africa at Port Elizabeth in 1949.

At first Hutton was extremely cautious and his mood had a restraining influence on Simpson and May. The two hours before lunch produced only 60 runs, but afterwards Hutton found his most scintillating form. Simpson played a valuable part by staying two and three-quarter hours while the first wicket realised 106–the same as India’s–and then came a brilliant partnership between Hutton and May, who put on 158 in two and a half hours.

As much as I love the memories passed down to be by my dad of Peter May, a man who once made 364 against the Aussies and possessed a superior career doesn’t get in a Sky Ashes song! But David Lloyd being hit in the bollocks does.

Two scores of 150 in the space of six weeks for Kayes and Vijay? Pah. Gary Kirsten and Ricky Ponting made 150s in the same week. Kirsten’s came against Bangladesh in East London (starting on 18 October 2002) and Ricky Ponting’s came against Pakistan in Sharjah (starting on 19 October 2002). Interestingly, both those players have two scores of 150! Kirsten completed his on the 19th, Ponting the 20th.

Murali Vijay’s century came off 201 balls with 10 x 4 and 1 x 6


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