Sometimes, the daddy tons do not necessarily guarantee a win. In fact, as many as 15 scores of double tons have ended up in losing sides. In the list of Test scores of 150 and more that have ended up on the losing sides, Brian Lara features a record eight times.
Here’s a list of top 5 highest Test scores that have ended up on the losing sides.
1) 242 by Ricky Ponting of Australia against India in 2003
Ricky Ponting slammed 242 in Australia’s total of 556 all out in the Adelaide Test in 2003. He slammed 31 fours in his 352-ball knock. Usually, a big knock and a team’s total like this ensure at least a draw. But Australia ended up losing the match. India replied with 523 with Rahul Dravid cracking 233. India then bowled out Australia cheaply for 196 to give themselves a target of 230. Dravid cracked 72 not out to help India overhaul the target and post a memorable win on Australian soil.
2) 226 by Brian Lara of West Indies against Australia in 2005
For the most part of Lara’s career, he played a lone hand in resurrecting West Indies’ fortune in Test cricket, and his scores ended up on the losing cause more often than not. His 226 in the first innings of Adelaide Test in 2005 too went in vain. He slammed 22 fours in his 298-ball knock that came at a strike rate of 75.83. His score propelled WI to 405, but Australia responded with 428 before bowling Lara and Co cheaply for 204 in the second innings. Australia then chased down the target of 182 with ease.
3) 222 by Nathan Astle of New Zealand vs England in 2002
This was one of the best knocks in the fourth innings that went in vain. New Zealand was chasing a stiff target of 550 runs, and all looked lost for the Kiwis when the ninth batsman fell at the score of 333.
Nathan Astle then threw caution to the winds and went on a six-scoring spree to put some fear in the England squad. He and Chris Cairns put 118-run stand for the 10th wicket in less than 11 overs before Astle was caught behind for 222. In this stand, Cairns’ contribution was just 23 as Astle raced to double ton in 153 balls, the fastest 200 ever. Astle slammed 28 fours and 11 sixes during his 168-ball knock.
4) 221 by Brian Lara of West Indies vs Sri Lanka in 2001
Lara scored a brilliant 221 against Sri Lanka in the Colombo Test in 2001 in the team’s score of 390. He cracked 23 fours and 2 sixes during the knock. He was the lone man standing for West Indies in the second innings as well, cracking a brilliant 130 off 215 balls with 14 fours and 1 six. However, his twin tons went in vain as West Indies lost the match by 10 wickets.
5) 217 by Shakib Al Hasan of Bangladesh vs New Zealand in 2017
Bangladesh all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan cracked a brilliant knock of 217 off 276 balls with 31 fours in the Wellington Test against New Zealand. Shakib’s knock helped his team score a big total of 595/8 declared, a position from where defeat was unlikely.
However, Bangladesh succumbed to a low total of 160 in the second innings with Shakib falling for a duck. Eventually, Bangladesh lost the match by 7 wickets after New Zealand chased down the target of 217 runs with ease.
Photo courtesy: Ricky Ponting's Facebook page