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Partnership (cricket)

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Harbhajan Singh and Sachin Tendulkar batting in a partnership.
Scoreboard showing runs scored by the current partnership (25), consisting of 16 by Sammy, 8 by Ramdin (out of his 27 total), and 1 extra.

A partnership is a term used in cricket, that usually refers to the two batters and the runs they score together, including extras. Two batters bat in a partnership, although only one is a striker at any time.[1] The partnership between two batsmen will come to an end when one of them is dismissed or retires, or the innings comes to a close, usually due to victory being achieved, a declaration, a time or over limit being reached, the match being abandoned. In exceptional cases, if one of the original batters are injured, a player may run between the wickets on behalf of the injured batter. However, any runs scored by the injured batter will be recorded as being in the partnership of the two original batters.[2] A partnership may also refer to two bowlers bowling from each end of the wicket.[3]

Strategy in cricket

Strong batting cohesion in partnerships is widely considered to be an important aspect of cricket. Generally speaking, top-order batters are superior to low-order batters; therefore, partnerships are usually greater when between two top-order batters, although it is relatively common for a lower-order batter with good defence to intelligently coordinate strike rotation to preserve wickets in hand and keep runs ticking over, a strategy that is common in both one-day cricket and Test cricket. Many believe that a key to a successful partnership is when to batters have differing playing styles.[4] For instance, Marcus Trescothick, known for aggressive style of batting,[5] and Mike Atherton,[6] known for a defensive approach, formed successful opening partnerships for England. Likewise, batters differing physical appearance may also contribute to a successful partnership. An example of this is Zak Crawley and Ben Duckett. Crawley is a tall right-handed batter, whereas Duckett is a much shorter left-handed batter.[7] It is encouraged that they rotate the strike, allowing each other to face the bowler regularly, and effective communication in calling runs is considered preferable for a successful partnership.[8][9]

Lower-order partnerships are usually much smaller than those for early partnerships.[10] In certain scenarios, middle- and low-order batters often tend to score at a higher strike rate.[citation needed] This is to score as many runs as possible before running out of batting partners, a tactic usually employed when a Test team is considering a declaration or when a one-day innings is closing in on its conclusion.[11] Batters such as Adam Gilchrist and Andrew Flintoff are widely regarded as some of the best middle-order batters.[12] Similarly, in a citation were there are no recognised batters remaining, tail-end batters may often play aggressively, with the purpose of more runs before the team is all out. Another example, as alluded to earlier, is where there is one not-out recognised batter and one tail-end batter; in this case, the recognised may often seek to be on strike as much as possible. A specific example of this is in Test cricket was when Ben Stokes and Jack Leach scored a crucial partnership of 75 to win a match at Headingly during the 2019 Ashes Series.[13]

In red-ball cricket

In test and first-class cricket, during opening partnerships, the primary focus is often on seeing off the new ball. In later partnerships, the emphasis shifts towards consolidation, facing an aging ball, spin bowling, and eventually the second new ball.

The importance of batting in partnership becomes even more crucial when only one recognized quality batsman remains. In such cases, their responsibility includes guiding the lower-order batsmen while attempting to score as many runs as possible or simply trying to save the game. Minimizing risk is vital, often achieved by exposing the lesser batsmen to as little bowling as possible. Boundaries and twos are preferred, and singles are avoided, especially in the early parts of an over. However, it may be necessary to score a single or three runs on the last ball of the over to counteract the change of bowling ends.

In white-ball cricket

In t20 and ODI cricket batters will often look to score at a higher strike rate. This is more apparent in the powerplay.

Windies Team hold the record of highest partnership against Zimbabwe at canberra on 24 Feb 2015. MN Samuels, Chris Gayle scored 372 for 2nd wicket.[14]

Effect on the opposition

Large partnerships do more than simply add runs to the scoreboard, they may also serve to exhaust and demoralise the fielding team. Both of these were major factors at the famous Test match at Eden Gardens in 2001, when India's V. V. S. Laxman and Rahul Dravid put on a fifth-wicket stand of 376 runs, staying at the crease for the entire fourth day's play without being dismissed. Despite having forced their opponents to follow on, Steve Waugh's highly regarded Australians were left emotionally and physically drained, slumping to a shock-heavy (171 run) defeat. Even if nowhere near as damaging numerically, larger-than-expected last wicket stands can still be very demoralising, especially because as soon as the Number 11 batsman walks out of the pavilion, many of the fielders expect to be batting within minutes and start their mental preparations. If the last wicket partnership lasts much longer than they expect, it has an adverse effect on their preparation and composure, as well as their energy level deteriorating from extra time on the field. It is also damaging to the confidence of the bowlers if they are unable to dismiss a team's worst batsman relatively easily. A good example of this came in the First Test between Australia and New Zealand at Brisbane Cricket Ground in 2004. The Kiwis performed well for the first two days, and while the Australians did recover strongly on the third, the New Zealanders were still well in the hunt when Glenn McGrath, the Australian fast bowler and notoriously poor batsman, came to the crease to accompany fellow tail-ender Jason Gillespie with nine wickets down. Incredibly, the pair put on 114 runs, both achieving half centuries (McGrath's first in a long Test career in which he has never averaged more than 8 with the bat). The humiliated New Zealanders lost energy and focus, and when they finally removed McGrath and went in to bat, their batting order was devastated, collapsing to 76 all out, giving Australia an innings victory with a day to spare. During the second Test of the 2005 Ashes, Australia's tailenders Shane Warne, Michael Kasprowicz and Brett Lee famously held out during their second innings after the top order had been decimated by England's bowlers and nearly won a tightly contested match, losing by a mere 2 runs, the narrowest margin in Ashes history.

Bowling partnerships

Two bowlers may be said to be bowling in tandem when they bowl all of a certain set of consecutive overs.[15]

James Anderson and Stuart Broad hold the record for most wickets in a bowling partnership. They have taken 1039 wickets together.

Test record partnerships by wicket

Correct as of 1 November 2021[16]

Wicket Runs Batting partners Batting team Fielding team Venue Season
1st 415 Neil McKenzie and Graeme Smith South Africa Bangladesh Chattogram 2008
2nd 576 Roshan Mahanama and Sanath Jayasuriya Sri Lanka India Colombo (RPS) 1997
3rd 624 Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara Sri Lanka South Africa Colombo (SSC) 2006
4th 449 Adam Voges and Shaun Marsh Australia West Indies Hobart 2015/16
5th 405 Donald Bradman and Sid Barnes Australia England Sydney 1946/47
6th 399 Ben Stokes and Jonny Bairstow England South Africa Cape Town 2016
7th 347 Clairmonte Depeiaza and Denis Atkinson West Indies Australia Bridgetown 1954/55
8th 332 Jonathan Trott and Stuart Broad England Pakistan Lord's 2010
9th 195 Mark Boucher and Pat Symcox South Africa Pakistan Johannesburg 1998
10th 198 Joe Root and James Anderson England India Nottingham 2014

Top 10 Test partnerships (for any wicket)

Correct as of 1 November 2021[17]

Runs Wicket Batting partners Batting team Fielding team Venue Season
624 3rd Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara Sri Lanka South Africa Colombo (SSC) 2006
576 2nd Roshan Mahanama and Sanath Jayasuriya Sri Lanka India Colombo (RPS) 1997
467 3rd Andrew Jones and Martin Crowe New Zealand Sri Lanka Wellington 1990/91
451 2nd Donald Bradman and Bill Ponsford Australia England The Oval 1934
451 3rd Mudassar Nazar and Javed Miandad Pakistan India Hyderabad 1982/83
449 4th Adam Voges and Shaun Marsh Australia West Indies Hobart 2015/16
446 2nd Conrad Hunte and Gary Sobers West Indies Pakistan Kingston, Jamaica 1957/58
438 2nd Marvan Atapattu and Kumar Sangakkara Sri Lanka Zimbabwe Bulawayo 2004
437 4th Mahela Jayawardene and Thilan Samaraweera Sri Lanka Pakistan Karachi 2008/09
429* 3rd Jacques Rudolph and Boeta Dippenaar South Africa Bangladesh Chattogram 2003

* = unbroken partnership

First-class record partnerships by wicket

Correct as of 1 November 2021[18]

Wicket Runs Batting partners Batting team Fielding team Venue Season
1st 561 Waheed Mirza and Mansoor Akhtar Karachi Whites Quetta Karachi 1976/77
2nd 580 Rafatullah Mohmand and Aamer Sajjad WAPDA SSGC Sheikhupura 2009/10
3rd 624 Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara Sri Lanka South Africa Colombo (SSC) 2006
4th 577 Vijay Hazare and Gul Mohammad Baroda Holkar Baroda 1946/47
5th 520* Cheteshwar Pujara and Ravindra Jadeja Saurashtra Orissa Rajkot 2008/09
6th 487* George Headley and Clarence Passailaigue Jamaica Lord Tennyson's XI Kingston, Jamaica 1931/32
7th 460 Bhupinder Singh and Pankaj Dharmani Punjab Delhi Delhi 1994/95
8th 433 Arthur Sims and Victor Trumper Australia Canterbury Christchurch 1913/14
9th 283 John Chapman and Arnold Warren Derbyshire Warwickshire Blackwell 1910
10th 307 Alan Kippax and Hal Hooker New South Wales Victoria MCG 1928/29

* = unbroken partnership

Top 10 first-class partnerships (for any wicket)

Percy Holmes, left, and Herbert Sutcliffe shake hands in front of the scoreboard after a first wicket stand of 555 at Leyton, 1932. The players' autographs can be seen on the photo.

Correct as of 1 November 2021[19]

Runs Wicket Batting partners Batting team Fielding team Venue Season
624 3rd Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara Sri Lanka South Africa Colombo (SSC) 2006
594* 3rd Swapnil Gugale and Ankit Bawne Maharashtra Delhi Mumbai 2016/17
580 2nd Rafatullah Mohmand and Aamer Sajjad WAPDA SSGC Sheikhupura 2009/10
577 4th Vijay Hazare and Gul Mohammad Baroda Holkar Baroda 1946/47
576 2nd Roshan Mahanama and Sanath Jayasuriya Sri Lanka India Colombo (RPS) 1997
574* 4th Frank Worrell and Clyde Walcott Barbados Trinidad Port-of-Spain 1945/46
561 1st Waheed Mirza and Mansoor Akhtar Karachi Whites Quetta Karachi 1976/77
555 1st Percy Holmes and Herbert Sutcliffe Yorkshire Essex Leyton 1932
554 1st Jack Brown and John Tunnicliffe Yorkshire Derbyshire Chesterfield 1898
539 3rd Sagar Jogiyani and Ravindra Jadeja Saurashtra Gujarat Surat 2012/13

* = unbroken partnership.

One-Day International record partnerships by wicket

Correct as of 1 November 2021[20]

Wicket Runs Batting partners Batting team Fielding team Venue Date
1st 365 John Campbell and Shai Hope West Indies Ireland Dublin 5 May 2019
2nd 372 Chris Gayle and Marlon Samuels West Indies Zimbabwe Canberra 24 February 2015
3rd 258 Darren Bravo and Denesh Ramdin West Indies Bangladesh Basseterre 25 August 2014
4th 275* Mohammad Azharuddin and Ajay Jadeja India Zimbabwe Cuttack 9 April 1998
5th 256* David Miller and JP Duminy South Africa Zimbabwe Hamilton 15 February 2015
6th 267* Grant Elliott and Luke Ronchi New Zealand Sri Lanka Dunedin 23 January 2015
7th 177 Jos Buttler and Adil Rashid England New Zealand Birmingham 9 June 2015
8th 202* Glenn Maxwell and Pat Cummins Australia Afghanistan Mumbai 7 November 2023
9th 132 Angelo Mathews and Lasith Malinga Sri Lanka Australia Melbourne 3 November 2010
10th 106* Viv Richards and Michael Holding West Indies England Manchester 31 May 1984

* = unbroken partnership

Top 10 One-Day International partnerships (for any wicket)

Correct as of 1 November 2021[21]

Runs Wicket Batting partners Batting team Fielding team Venue Date
372 2nd Chris Gayle and Marlon Samuels West Indies Zimbabwe Canberra 23 February 2015
365 1st John Campbell and Shai Hope West Indies Ireland Dublin 5 May 2019
331 2nd Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid India New Zealand Hyderabad 8 November 1999
318 2nd Saurav Ganguly and Rahul Dravid India Sri Lanka Taunton 26 May 1999
304 1st Imam-ul-Haq and Fakhar Zaman Pakistan Zimbabwe Bulawayo 20 July 2018
292 1st Tamim Iqbal and Liton Das Bangladesh Zimbabwe Sylhet 6 March 2020
286 1st Upul Tharanga and Sanath Jayasuriya Sri Lanka England Leeds 1 July 2006
284 1st David Warner and Travis Head Australia Pakistan Adelaide 26 January 2017
282* 1st Quinton de Kock and Hashim Amla South Africa Bangladesh Kimberley 15 October 2017
282 1st Upul Tharanga and Tillekeratne Dilshan Sri Lanka Zimbabwe Pallekele 10 March 2011

* = unbroken partnership

References

  1. ^ "Scoring runs Law | MCC". www.lords.org. Retrieved 22 September 2023.
  2. ^ "Batter's innings; Runners Law | MCC". www.lords.org. Retrieved 22 September 2023.
  3. ^ "Shaheen says partnerships key after Pakistan pacers rattle India". Yahoo News. 3 September 2023. Retrieved 23 September 2023.
  4. ^ "'An opening partner is a bit like your brother'". Cricinfo. Retrieved 22 September 2023.
  5. ^ "Record-breaking Trescothick sets up win". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 23 September 2023.
  6. ^ Rana, Yaseen (23 March 2019). "Mike Atherton | The Finest English Batsman Of His Era | Wisden Almanack". Wisden. Retrieved 23 September 2023.
  7. ^ "'The revolving door closes - Duckett & Crawley here to stay'". BBC Sport. Retrieved 22 September 2023.
  8. ^ "Does strike rotation matter in cricket? Yes, but not in the ways you might think". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 22 September 2023.
  9. ^ "Kartikeya Date: Is there an advantage to having left-right pairs at the crease?". www.espncricinfo.com. Retrieved 9 September 2020.
  10. ^ "Are late-order batsmen contributing to team scores more today than in the past?". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 23 September 2023.
  11. ^ "Jos Buttler: 'I have lived true to what we're trying to do as a team by being really aggressive'". Cricinfo. Retrieved 23 September 2023.
  12. ^ "Lower-order batsmen: they wag and how!". Sportstar. 29 December 2016. Retrieved 23 September 2023.
  13. ^ "Ben Stokes century seals historic one-wicket win to keep Ashes alive". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 23 September 2023.
  14. ^ "ODI matches | Partnership records | Highest partnerships for any wicket". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 7 November 2023.
  15. ^ "Cricket's deadly bowling duos: Where do James Anderson and Stuart Broad rank?". Sky Sports. Retrieved 11 September 2020.
  16. ^ "Records - Test matches - Partnership records - Highest partnerships by wicket - ESPNcricinfo".
  17. ^ "Records - Test matches - Partnership records - Highest partnerships for any wicket - ESPNcricinfo".
  18. ^ "Records - First-class matches - Partnership records - Highest partnerships by wicket - ESPNcricinfo".
  19. ^ "Records - First-class matches - Partnership records - Highest partnerships for any wicket - ESPNcricinfo".
  20. ^ "Records - One-Day Internationals - Partnership records - Highest partnerships by wicket - ESPNcricinfo".
  21. ^ "Records - One-Day Internationals - Partnership records - Highest partnerships for any wicket - ESPNcricinfo".
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Partnership (cricket)
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