Anderson, Dravid, Ponting & Botham – your cricket questions answered – BBC Sport

James Anderson is the world’s most successful fast bowler in Test cricket – but who has helped him most behind the stumps?

When BBC Sport invited readers to ask a question about cricket they’ve always wanted answered, we received hundreds of responses.

Test Match Special scorer Andrew Samson answers the statistical questions you posed.

Who has faced the most balls in Test history? Greg Pearce

Greg, this one won’t surprise you. It’s the ‘Great Wall of India’ himself, Rahul Dravid. The right-hander faced 31,260 balls in his 164-Test career.

Who has taken the most catches off James Anderson’s bowling in Tests? Patch Eames

Matt Prior, the former England wicketkeeper, took 68 catches off Anderson’s bowling. Fielder-wise, it’s Anderson’s good friend Alastair Cook, with 40 catches.

Has a team ever declared in a List A one-day match? Ian Webster

Yes, Ian. I know of the following declarations in List A one-day games:

  • 361-2: Natal v SA African XI, Durban, 1975 (Natal then bowled out the SA African XI for 78)
  • 171-5: Rhodesia v Transvaal, Salisbury, 1978 (Match was a no-result, Transvaal finishing on 37-0)
  • 1-0: Somerset v Worcestershire, Worcester, 1979

The Somerset one was in order to keep their run-rate intact. Declarations were banned in one-day games after that. It is possible that there may have been a few more than those that I have listed but I don’t know of them.

Which cricketer has been involved in the most Test wins? Anon

Former Australia captain Ricky Ponting with 108.

Ricky Ponting won more Tests than anyone else in his career, but lost three of his four Ashes series as captain

What is the highest one-day international total without a team hitting a six? Anon

That happened quite recently, when Sri Lanka hit 345-8 against West Indies in Hambantota on 26 February. West Indies did manage a solitary six in their reply but fell 161 runs short, being bowled out for just 184.

Has anyone ever taken 10 wickets in a Test and scored a century? Lauren Foden

Yes, Lauren. It’s happened three times in Test cricket. England’s Ian Botham did it first when he scored 114 and took 13 wickets against India in Bombay in 1980.

Imran Khan scored 117 and took 11 wickets for Pakistan against India in Faisalabad in 1983.

And, more recently, Bangladesh’s Shakib Al Hasan hit 137 and took 10 wickets against Zimbabwe in Khulna in 2014.

In the same year Botham was dominating Test matches in India, he made his debut as a professional footballer for Scunthorpe against Bournemouth

Who is the youngest cricketer to play for England? Chris

Brian Close, who was 18 years and 149 days when he made his debut against New Zealand at Old Trafford in 1949.

Close played the last of his 22 Tests 27 years later, at the same ground, but this time against West Indies. What happened in that match has gone down in cricketing folklore…

Close withstands hostile Holding

Which bowler has the highest number of wickets by bowling the batsmen? Vic

Assuming that you are talking about Test cricket, Sri Lanka off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan has taken the most wickets bowled with 168, followed by Australia’s Shane Warne and England’s James Anderson, both on 116.

Who is the best slip catcher in the history of Test cricket? Sebastian Evans

Difficult one to answer, Sebastian, but India’s Rahul Dravid holds the record for most catches in a Test career with 210.

Sri Lanka’s Mahela Jayawardene is next on the list with 205, then it’s South Africa’s Jacques Kallis (200) and two Australians, Ricky Ponting (196) and Mark Waugh (181).

Which Test was greater? Edgbaston 2005 (when England beat Australia by two runs) or Kolkata 2001 (when India beat Australia having followed on 274 runs behind)? Mithun

We can’t possibly answer that, Mithun, so instead we’ll put it to a vote…

And finally…

If you’re playing cricket in your garden and the ball goes over the hedge, is it out, or six and out? Ivan Minnis

It’s certainly six, Ivan, and, by our reckoning, it’s out too!

Additional reporting by Marc Higginson

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