Bill Frindall, aka the Bearded Wonder, is poised to solve your cricket queries and teasers.
The Test Match Special statistician will be busy answering your questions throughout the winter season.
Fill in the form on the right-hand side of the page to stump the Bearded Wonder.
Graham Butterfield, UK
Who was the last batsman to bat on every day of a Test match? What were the circumstances?
What a timely question, Graham! The answer is Andrew Flintoff and his feat went unnoticed until Indian statistician Rajneesh Gupta alerted me by email. In England's recent second Test against India, at Mohali in Chandigarh, 'Freddie' was 4 not out at the end of a first day shortened to 50.3 overs by rain and bad light, took his score to 22 not out during the 14.3 overs possible on the second day, and was eventually out for 70 on the third day. By stumps on the fourth day he had scored 16 not out in his second innings and he took his score to 51 on the last day when his was the final England wicket to fall.
Prior to Flintoff's instance, there had been only five occasions when a player had batted on each day of a five-day Test: M L Jaisimha (2, 18, 0, 59, 15) for India v Australia at Calcutta in 1959-60; G Boycott (1, 86, 20, 12, 68) for England v Australia at Trent Bridge in 1977, K J Hughes (47, 35, 35, 38, 46) Australia v England at Lord's in 1980; A J Lamb (13, 10, 30, 79, 1) England v West Indies at Lord's in 1984; and R J Shastri (26, 0, 82, 3, 7) India v England at Calcutta in 1984-85.
Steve Nichol, Oman
Having watched Alastair Cook's dogged performance in the second innings of the first Test against India, two questions come to mind. Who was the last batsman to score a century in the second innings of their debut? And what is the highest score by any batsman in the second innings of his debut?
Prior to Cook, D R (Dwayne) Smith was the last to score a hundred in the second innings of his maiden Test when he made 20 and 105 not out (off 105 balls with two sixes and 15 fours) for West Indies v South Africa at Cape Town in January 2004. George Headley's 176 for West Indies v England at Bridgetown in January 1930 is the highest second innings by a debutant.
Mike Akerman, England
Alastair Cook has just scored a brilliant century in his first Test Match. Are there any Test players who have scored a century in their first but only Test Match?
There have been just two. A G (Andy) Gantaume scored 112 in his only innings for West Indies (v England at Port-of-Spain in February 1948) when he deputised for the injured Jeff Stollmeyer, and R E (Rodney) Redmond scored 107 and 56 in his only Test for New Zealand at the end of a three-match rubber (v Pakistan at Auckland in February 1973).
Bill - In your Playfair Cricket Annual you note whether bowlers have taken 50 wickets or whether batsmen have passed 1000 runs in a season. Who was the last player to achieve both feats in a first-class season?
With 1121 runs and 51 wickets in 1999, R C (Ronnie) Irani of Essex was the most recent to do that particular double. The only other player currently registered for a first-class county to have achieved that feat is C L (Chris) Cairns of Nottinghamshire who scored 1171 runs and took 52 wickets in 1995.
Martin Trasler, England
I believe my grandfather, Mr Phillip Trasler, played one game for a West Indies cricket team in the 1940's, possibly Trinidad, I was wondering if you could tell me any more information as the history and life of my grandfather is a bit of a mystery.
I regret that he must remain a mystery because no one named Trasler has played first-class cricket in the Caribbean. Perhaps he played for one of the minor islands and someone who knew him will read this and contact me.
John Smith, England
With Ed Joyce possibly on the verge of forcing his way into the full England set-up, how many Irish-born players have played for England?
Five England Test cricketers have been born in Ireland, only McCague joining the list in recent times: Frederick L Fane (Curragh Camp), Leland Hone (Dublin), Martin J McCague (Larne), Joseph E P McMaster (Gilford) and Timothy C O'Brien (Dublin). Other Irishmen have appeared for other countries, notably for Australia in the very early Tests.
Anton Osborne, England
In the recent India-England Test at Nagpur three players scored their maiden Test hundreds in the same match - Paul Collingwood and Alistair Cook for England and Wasim Jaffer for India. Has there been an occasion where this has happened before?
Similar questions have been received from Jim Chapman (UK), David Pearce (England), Mark Smith (England) and Jonathan Barrand (UK).
Collingwood, Cook and Jaffer are the 15th trio to have recorded their maiden Test hundreds in the same match. The most recent instance prior to theirs occurred at Chittagong in November 2001 when Trevor Gripper and Craig Wishart of Zimbabwe and Habibul Bashar of Bangladesh each scored their first Test centuries. The last instance involving England was back in 1969 against West Indies at Lord's when John Hampshire, Ray Illingworth and Charlie Davis registered their maiden hundreds.
Four of those 15 instances have involved a record FOUR maiden century-makers: Australia v England at Melbourne in 1946-47, West Indies v England at Port-of-Spain in 1947-48, India v West Indies at Delhi in 1948-49 and West Indies v Australia at Georgetown in 1977-78.
Frank Bennett, England
I am writing a book on cricket in Herefordshire in the 20th Century and want to include a chapter on ALL cricketers born in the county who have played at Test and first-class level. Do you have a way of searching for a comprehensive list?
Five Test cricketers have been born in Herefordshire, all in Hereford itself. They include R T (Reg) Perks, the brothers D W ('Dick') and P E (Peter) Richardson, and John Sharp of England. J T C (Justin) Vaughan, who played six Tests for New Zealand, was also born in that city. You will find details of the first four in my 'England Test Cricketers'. If you care to email me via my website I can supply a source for a first-class list.
Peter Mitchell, UK
I recently came across some old cigarette cards dating back to the 1950s. One of them was of Frank Worrell and one statistic given was that he was, then, the only batsman to share in two 500-plus partnerships in first-class cricket. Is it just possible that this record still stands? Have there been any stands over 600 runs?
There have been seven partnerships exceeding 499 in all first-class cricket, the highest being 577 in 533 minutes for the fourth wicket between Vijay Hazare (288) and Gul Mahomed (319) for Baroda v Holkar in the final of the Ranji Trophy tournament at Baroda in March 1947.
Frank Worrell remains the only batsman to have shared in two of them, both unbroken, for Barbados against Trinidad, and both for the fourth wicket: 502 with John Goddard at Bridgetown in February 1944, and 574 with Clyde Walcott at Port-of-Spain in February 1946. Worrell's contributions were 308 not out and 255 not out respectively.
Barrie J Henton, England
In the recent first Test between Bangladesh and Sri Lanka at Chittagong, one run was required to win the match but a four was scored. Is the scorecard to read 163-2 or 166-2?
The umpires have confirmed that Mahela Jayawardena had already completed the winning run before the ball crossed the boundary ropes. Sri Lanka's score is therefore 163 for 2, with Jayawardena finishing with 23 not out (4 fours) and Mohammad Ashraful's analysis reduced to 2-0-13-0.
Has it ever happened that two brothers have played for the opposite sides in the same match?
Many, many times. The most obvious examples involve the Edrich, Hearne, Bicknell, Richardson, Steele and Chappell brethren. The rarest example, involving identical twins, occurred in 1950, when Surrey's Bedsers, Alec (England) and Eric (The Rest), played against each other in the Test trial at Bradford when Jim Laker took eight wickets for two runs. According to Jim, Eric Bedser scored one of those runs when Alec deliberately misfielded the ball!
Barbara Clinton, England
If a side bat in the usual order, 1-11, and every batsman is bowled first ball, which number batsman is not out at the end?
Thank you for resurrecting this teaser, Barbara. The commonest but incorrect answers are 2 or 11. Numbers one, three, four, five, six, and seven are bowled in the first over while two watches from the non-striker's end. Joined by number eight, he perishes to the first ball of the second over and is swiftly followed by nine, 10 and jack. Thus the answer has to be number eight. It is the scenario I have always longed for when scoring limited-overs matches!