RAJESH KUMAR - Cricket Statisticians
2011 New Zealand Cricket Almanack

2011 New Zealand Cricket Almanack
Edited by Francis Payne and Ian Smith

Published by
Hachette NZ Ltd.,

4, Whetu Place, Mairangi Bay, Auckland, New Zealand
website: www.hachette.co.nz

Publicist : Ruby Mitchell
Email: rubym@hachette.co.nz

Pages : 504

Price : New Zealand $ 55.00 plus postage

Every lover of the game will relish the arrival of this latest edition. 2011 New Zealand Cricket Almanack is an outstanding cricket annual - the most compact and efficiently organised production.

Thanks to superb efforts of Francis Payne and Ian Smith, cricket's library has been enriched by the appearance of this Almanack over the years.

Besides the Tests, ODIs and Twenty20 Internationals played by New Zealand during the last twelve months, the Almanack also includes complete coverage of domestic cricket, including Plunket Shield, the men's one-day competition, the HRV Cup, which featured numerous overseas cricketers, the women's Action Cricket competitions, Hawke Cup and age-group cricket.

The past season, according to the editors, has been a testng time for New Zealand cricket followers. "No wins in five Tests and eight victories in 27 one-day internationals would indicate that it was not a vintage summer for the Black Caps. However, when New Zealand did win, they were so dominant it made subsequent losses that much more frustrating and often inexplicable.

The World Cup followed a similar pattern of feast or famine. The likes of Kenya, Zimbabwe and Canada were brushed aside and Paistan were out-batted, out-bowled and out-fielded. However, this was offset by losses to Australia and Sri Lanka. Then, against all the odds, New Zealand defeated South Africa to progress to the semi-finals. Although New Zealand did not reach the final, their quarter-final win did much to salvage a difficult season. They were the only team from outside the sub-continent to get as far as the last four."

Chris Martin and Neil Wagner have been chosen as Players of the Year and Stephen Murdoch, Derek de Boorder and Trent Boult as Promising Players by the Almanack.

An absorbing compilation of the season's happenings, as in the previous years, is the highlight of this Almanack. The statistical highlights, covered in this section, are not to be seen in any other cricket publication and website. Some of the interesting Happenings covered in this Almanack are:

# The three Akmal brothers achieved a unique feat during Pakistan's tour of New Zealand. Umar Akmal kept wicket in the Twenty20 games, Adnan kept in the Tests and Kamran was wicketkeeper for the one-day internationals. Adnan and Kamran Akmal are the only pair of brothers from any country to have both kept wicket in Test Cricket.

# New Zealand's first four batsmen were all dismissed without scoring in the third Twenty20 international against Pakistan at Christchurch. The only previous occasion that this had happened was when the first four in Kenya's lineup all made ducks against New Zealand at Durban during the World Twenty20 in 2007. Kenya were 1-4 at that stage but managed to reach 37 before the fifth wicket fell. New Zealand, however, lost their fifth wicket at 11, a record low for an uninterrupted Twenty20 International.

# Chris Martin finally completed his century of runs in Test Cricket in the second innings of the first Test against Pakistan at Hamilton, with a three off a Umar Gul full toss. In doing so, Martin completely obliterated the previous record of most matches required to reach the landmark. It was Martin's 60th Test. Glenn McGrath took 32 Tests to reach the target, three more than Al Valentine of West Indies. Bhagwat Chandrasekhar (India) needed 28 matches while Phil Tufnell (England) and Danish Kaneria (Pakistan) required 27 games.

# New Zealand had been 33-0 at tea on the third day of the Test at Hamilton but were bowled out for 110 in the last session. Pakistan then had time to hit off the 19 runs they needed for victory to complete an unexpectedly abrupt ending to the match. This was not the first time that New Zealand had lost all ten wickets in one session of a Test, however. At Lord's in 1958, they actually began their innings and were bowled out in the same session. England had batted first and, after rain had disrupted play, were all out for 269 just before tea on the second day. New Zealand began their innings after tea and were all out for 47 in 32.3 overs. This was the lowest score in a Test at Lord's until India's 42 in 1974. There was still time that day for New Zealand to begin their second innings after they were asked to follow on. They were 0-0 at stumps but were dismissed for 74 the next day to lose by an innings. Tony Lock had match figures of 9-29 from 24 overs.

A detailed statistical section, covering Tests, ODIs and First-class cricket apart from New Zealand limited-overs records and Obituaries section, as always, are always exhaustive.

Highly recommended Almanack. Many happy hours can be spent absorbing the endless data. As one would expect from Fancis Payne and Ian Smith, there is a wealth of information covering both team and individual achievements that makes the work an essential purchase for anyone interested in New Zealand cricket or statistics in general.

The volume is presented with care and attention to detail consistent with this publisher's high standards.