Of debuts and returns

The Afghanistan side before the start of the Test against India in Bengaluru.   -  K. Murali Kumar


The average age of Afghanistan’s Test-playing XI in Bengaluru. At 25.11 years, the team is the youngest ever side to appear in a country’s inaugural Test match. The previous record of 25.93 years was held by the Bangladesh side during its maiden Test against India in Dhaka in November 2000.

The youngest and oldest sides to appear in their country’s inaugural Test match

Average ageTeamOldest playerAgeYoungest playerAgeAgainstVenueYear
25.11AfghanistanMohammad Nabi33 years, 99 daysMujeeb Ur Rahman17 years, 78 daysIndiaBengaluru2018
25.93BangladeshAminul Islam32 years, 282 daysBikash Ranjan Das18 years, 119 daysIndiaDhaka2000
26.30IndiaC.K. Nayudu36 years, 238 daysAmar Singh21 years, 204 daysEnglandLord’s1932
26.69South AfricaWilliam Milton34 years, 99 daysArthur Ochse19 years, 1 dayEnglandPort Elizabeth1889
27.31New ZealandMatt Henderson34 years, 161 daysAlby Roberts20 years, 143 daysEnglandChristchurch1930
27.46PakistanAmir Elahi44 years, 45 daysHanif Mohammad17 years, 300 daysIndiaDelhi1952
27.61AustraliaNed Gregory/Nat Thomson37 years, 290 daysTom Garrett18 years, 232 daysEnglandMelbourne1877
28.03Sri LankaSomachandra de Silva39 years, 251 daysArjuna Ranatunga18 years, 78 daysEnglandColombo PSS1982
30.63ZimbabweJohn Traicos45 years, 154 daysAlistair Campbell20 years, 25 daysIndiaHarare1992
32.07IrelandEd Joyce39 years, 231 daysTyrone Kane23 years, 307 daysPakistanMalahide2018
33.11West IndiesGeorge Challenor39 years, 361 daysClifford Roach24 years, 102 daysEnglandLord’s1928
33.20EnglandJames Southerton49 years, 119 daysGeorge Ulyett25 years, 145 daysAustraliaMelbourne1877


Note: For the record, the average age of the ICC World XI that played a Test match in Sydney in October 2005 against Australia was 30.06 years. Brian Lara was the oldest player at 36 years, 165 days, while captain Graeme Smith was the youngest in the side at 24 years, 255 days.


The age of Afghanistan’s Mujeeb Ur Rahman when he made his Test debut against India in Bengaluru. At 17 years, 78 days, he is became the joint 15th youngest to make his Test debut. However, he is the youngest ever to appear in a country’s maiden Test match. Previously, Pakistan’s Hanif Mohammad at 17 years, 300 days was the youngest during his country’s inaugural Test match in October 1952.

Teenagers who made their debut in their country’s maiden Test match

17 years, 78 daysMujeeb Ur RahmanAfghanistanIndiaBengaluruJune 14, 2018Lost
17 years, 300 daysHanif MohammadPakistanIndiaDelhiOctober 16, 1952Lost
18 years, 78 daysArjuna RanatungaSri LankaEnglandColombo PSSFebruary 17, 1982Lost
18 years, 119 daysBikash Ranjan DasBangladeshIndiaDhakaNovember 10, 2000Lost
18 years, 133 daysWafadar MomandAfghanistanIndiaBengaluruJune 14, 2018Lost
18 years, 232 daysTom GarrettAustraliaEnglandMelbourneMarch 15, 1988Won
19 years, 1 dayArthur OchseSouth AfricaEnglandPort ElizabethMarch 12, 1889Lost
19 years, 267 daysRashid KhanAfghanistanIndiaBengaluruJune 14, 2018Lost



The number of first-class matches played by Mujeeb Ur Rahman before his Test debut in Bengaluru. He became the only sixth player since 1900 to make his first-class debut in a Test match. Prior to 1900, there had been 28 instances (21 South Africans, five Englishmen and two Australians) of players making their first-class debut in a Test match. But then, first-class and Test cricket was in its infancy stage at that time.

Players making their first-class debut in a Test match (since 1900)

PlayerForAgainstVenueDateResultTests played
Graham VivianNew ZealandIndiaKolkataMarch 1965Drawn5
Ujesh RanchodZimbabweIndiaDelhiMarch 1993Lost1
Mashrafe MortazaBangladeshZimbabweDhakaNovember 2001Drawn36
Yasir AliPakistanBangladeshMultanSeptember 2003Won1
Nazmul HossainBangladeshIndiaChittagongDecember 2004Lost2
Mujeeb Ur RahmanAfghanistanIndiaBengaluruJune 2018Lost1


Note: Mujeeb Ur Rahman is still active.


The number of Test matches missed by Dinesh Karthik after he made a comeback to the Indian side against Afghanistan in Bengaluru. Only six other players have missed more matches than Karthik in Test cricket history. However, Karthik has now missed most Tests than any other Indian. Incidentally, he last appeared in a Test way back in January 2010 at Chittagong.

Most consecutive Tests missed by a player

Tests missedPlayerForFromToLast Test played
142Gareth BattyEnglandJune 6, 2005October 20, 2016November 9, 2016
114Martin BicknellEnglandAugust 10, 1993August 21, 2003September 4, 2003
109Floyd ReiferWest IndiesJanuary 19, 1999July 9, 2009July 17, 2009
104Younis AhmedPakistanNovember 3, 1969February 21, 1987March 4, 1987
103Derek ShackletonEnglandNovember 8, 1951June 20, 1963August 7, 1963
96Les JacksonEnglandJuly 27, 1949July 6, 1961July 6, 1961
87Dinesh KarthikIndiaJanuary 23, 2010June 14, 2018August 1, 2018
86Pat PocockEnglandJuly 14, 1976July 26, 1984February 25, 1985
85Wayne LarkinsEnglandSeptember 2, 1981February 24, 1990January 13, 1991
85Liam PlunkettEnglandJune 12, 2007June 12, 2014June 12, 2014


Note: Karthik and Plunkett are still active.

Most consecutive Tests missed by an Indian player

Tests missedPlayerFromToTests playedLast Test played
87Dinesh KarthikJanuary 23, 2010June 14, 201824August 2018
83Parthiv PatelAugust 12, 2008November 26, 201625January 2018
56Abhinav MukundAugust 2, 2011March 4, 20177July 2017
49Piyush ChawlaApril 14, 2008December 12, 20123December 2012
43Parthiv PatelOctober 30, 2004August 7, 200825January 2018
40Arun LalJanuary 9, 1983February 10, 198716May 1989


Note: Apart from Arun Lal, all players are still active.


The number of overs taken to achieve a result in the recent Bengaluru Test match between India and Afghanistan. It is now the shortest ever completed Test match on Indian soil. Previously, the India-Australia Test in Mumbai in November 2004 was the lowest, lasting 202.1 overs.

Shortest completed Test matches on Indian soil

OversBallsTeam 1 (Overs faced)Team 2 (Overs faced)VenueDateResult
171.41,028India (104.5)Afghanistan (27.5 + 38.4)BengaluruJune 2018India won by an innings and 262 runs
202.11,213India (41.3 + 68.2)Australia (61.3 + 30.5)Mumbai (Wankhede)November 2004India won by 13 runs
210.21,262West Indies (55.2 + 47)India (108)Mumbai (Wankhede)November 2013India won by an innings and 126 runs
237.41,426Sri Lanka (59.1 + 48.4)India (129.5)NagpurDecember 1986India won by an innings and 106 runs
243.11,459India (61.5 + 66.5)England (95.1 + 19.2)KanpurJanuary 1952England won by eight wickets


Note: Only one other Test match in Asia was shorter than the Bengaluru Test. At Sharjah in October 2002, only 148.5 overs were bowled in the neutral Test match between Pakistan and Australia.

Queries Corner

Who are the other Indians who have come close to scoring a century before lunch on opening day of a Test match?

– Kirti Suresh, Pune

Two Indians have missed scoring a century before lunch on the opening day of a Test match. First to miss was Farokh Engineer (109), who was unbeaten on 94 at lunch on the opening day of the Madras Test match in January 1967 against the West Indies. Then, Virender Sehwag missed his century by one run during his 180, also against the West Indies, at Gros Islet in June 2006. Sehwag did it one more time, during his unbeaten 201 against Sri Lanka at Galle in July 2008. On this occasion, he missed it by nine runs. He was 91 not out at lunch on the opening day.

Is Afghanistan’s defeat by an innings and 262 runs the biggest by a Test debutant nation?

– Ashish Khakar, Vadodara

Afghanistan’s defeat is by far the biggest by a Test debutant nation. Previously Pakistan, in its maiden Test match, had lost to India by an innings and 70 runs in Delhi in October 1952.

How often have two Indian openers made centuries in same Test innings?

– Ajay Kumar, Mumbai

In the recent Bengaluru Test match, Shikhar Dhawan and Murali Vijay provided the ninth instance when two Indian openers have managed to make three-figure scores in the same Test match innings. Interestingly, it was the third such instance for Dhawan and Vijay. They also achieved this at Mohali in 2013 against Australia and at Fatullah in 2015 against Bangladesh. The other six Indian openers to do so are: Vijay Merchant–S. Mushtaq Ali, Vinoo Mankad–Pankaj Roy, Sunil Gavaskar–Kris Srikkanth, Virender Sehwag–Rahul Dravid, Dinesh Karthik–Wasim Jaffer and Gautam Gambhir–Virender Sehwag.

Both Ireland and Afghanistan made their Test debuts within a month of each other this year. Is this the shortest time between two newcomers in Tests?

– Srihari Rao, Visakhapatnam

The shortest time between two sides is the one between Australia and England who played the inaugural Test match at Melbourne on March 15, 1877. Otherwise, the time of one year, six months, 18 days between the debuts of West Indies (June 23, 1928) and New Zealand (January10, 1930) was the shortest – until this month. Both Ireland and Afghanistan played their first Tests one month, two days apart. For the record, for the longest is between South Africa (1889) and the West Indies (1928) – took 39 years, three months, 11 days.

Note: All figures are updated as on June 21, 2018.


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