Ish Sodhi and Neil Wagner’s heroics: A list of other final-day Test escapes
Following Ish Sodhi and Neil Wagner’s heroics for New Zealand against England, a look at other occasions when tailenders have led their teams to dramatic escapes on the final day of a Test matchUpdated: Apr 03, 2018, 23:42 IST
Tailenders Ish Sodhi and Neil Wagner were hailed as heroes after their gritty 188-ball stand secured a second Test draw and series win for New Zealand against the Joe Root-led England on Tuesday.
Sodhi produced a defensive masterclass, scoring 56 off 168 balls as the Kiwis claimed a series win over England on home soil for the first time since 1983-84.
Wagner contributed an incredibly resilient seven off 103 as the hosts dug in to hold England off until they ran out of time and light.
Here’s a list of instances where the tail defied victory to the opposition in Tests –
Sri Lanka vs England, Galle, 2003
Set 323 to win, England were reeling at 171/7 but lost just two wickets in the 31 overs in final session of day five to finish on 210/9 when bad light saved the visitors.
Gareth Batty (26 off 70 balls) and Ashley Giles (17 not out off 107 balls) led England’s rearguard action, batting for about an hour in fading light before Batty was bowled by Muttiah Muralitharan. The duo added 34 runs for the eighth wicket in 98 balls.
England vs Sri Lanka, Lord’s, 2006
Nuwan Kulasekara (64 off 133 balls) and Chaminda Vaas (50 off 188 balls) stitched together a 105-run ninth wicket stand off 273 balls and with help from bad light and England’s appalling catching, Sri Lanka pulled off an improbable draw.
Asked to follow on, Sri Lanka – who were bundled out for 192 in response to England’s 551/6d -- turned certain defeat into a creditable performance in alien conditions, against the likes of Matthew Hoggard, Andrew Flintoff, Liam Plunkett and Monty Panesar. The visitors batted for 199 overs, scoring 537/9.
New Zealand vs England, Auckland, 1997
New Zealand’s No 11 Danny Morrison faced 133 balls for his unbeaten 14 as he held out with Nathan Astle for 167 minutes and 106 runs in Auckland to help the hosts avoid an innings defeat.
England vs Australia, The Ashes, Manchester, 2005
Chasing 423 on the final day, Australia were 354/9 with Ricky Ponting (156) the latest to depart.
Brett Lee and Glenn McGrath batted sensibly in the last four overs from Andrew Flintoff and Steve Harmison as Australia finished on 371/9.
This game had everything. Hundreds from Michael Vaughan, Andrew Strauss and Ricky Ponting, five-wicket hauls for Simon Jones and McGrath and absolute thrill.