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The highest T20 partnership for each wicket


T20_highest_partnership_CricketThe T20 record books were rewritten last week, as Afghan openers Hazratullah Zazai and Usman Ghani punished the Irish bowling in the course of a partnership of 236 in the second T20I at the Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium in Dehradun. This created a new record for the highest stand for any wicket in T20 matches, obliterating the 229-run second-wicket partnership between Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers in the 2016 edition of the Indian Premier League.

Interestingly, the Zazai-Ghani alliance was not the only mammoth T20 stand witnessed in the week gone by. Just two days earlier, the Mumbai duo of Shreyas Iyer and Suryakumar Yadav had put Sikkim’s attack to the sword while adding 213 – a new record for the third wicket. With record-breaking partnerships in the shortest format well and truly in vogue, here is a look at the highest partnership for each wicket in men’s T20 cricket.

First wicket – Hazratullah Zazai and Usman Ghani, 2018-19

Aged 20 and 22 respectively, Zazai and Ghani showcased an exhibition of relentless hitting against Ireland at Dehradun, on their way to an astounding 236-run partnership. Zazai creamed an unbeaten 162 in 62 balls – the joint third-highest T20 score of all time – and hit 16 sixes (a new T20I record), while Ghani scored 73. These fireworks led to a humungous total of 278/3, the highest ever in a T20. Ireland’s response began well, but they could muster no more than 194/6.

Second wicket – Virat Kohli and Abraham de Villiers, 2016

Two modern-day superstars came together to break their own record for the highest T20 partnership. After the Royal Challengers Bangalore had lost Chris Gayle early, de Villiers (129* in 52 balls) joined captain Kohli (109 in 55) for a 229-run stand that flattened the Gujarat Lions at the Chinnaswamy Stadium. The hosts posted a daunting 248/3, and duly won by 144 runs. The previous record of 215 was achieved by the same pair, against the Mumbai Indians in 2015.  

Third wicket – Shreyas Iyer and Suryakumar Yadav, 2018-19

The first round of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy saw a new record for the highest third-wicket partnership in T20 matches. Facing newcomers Sikkim at Indore, Mumbai were 22/2 when Yadav allied with Iyer to take the game away from the opposition. By the time Yadav was dismissed for 63 in the 17th over, their stand had yielded 213 runs. Iyer got out soon after, having smashed 147 in just 55 balls. Mumbai piled up 258/4, to which Sikkim replied with only 104/7.

Fourth wicket – Manprit Juneja and Abdulahad Malik, 2012-13

Until this Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy Super League Group A match between Gujarat and Kerala at Indore, no fourth-wicket pair had added more than 140 runs in a T20 match. Kerala reduced Gujarat to 31/3 by the fifth over, and would have hoped for the flurry of wickets to continue. However, Juneja (108*) and Malik (84*) put paid to such hopes with an unbroken partnership of 202 that powered Gujarat to 233/3, a total which proved enough for a resounding 90-run victory.

Fifth wicket – Hashim Amla and Dwayne Bravo, 2016

Amla opened for the Trinbago Knight Riders in their second game of the 2016 Caribbean Premier League, against the Barbados Tridents at Port of Spain, but could only watch as wickets fell around him to make the score 20/4 in the fifth over. Enter Bravo, who combined with the bearded South African for a game-changing stand of 150 that carried the total to 170/5. Amla fell for 81 off the last ball, while Bravo ended at 66*. The Knight Riders went on to win by 11 runs.

Sixth wicket – Kennar Lewis and Andre Russell, 2018

Russell, captain of the Jamaica Tallawahs, hit the most incredible T20 knock in this CPL clash at Port of Spain. After having amassed 223/6 (Russell 3/38, with a hat-trick), the Trinbago Knight Riders had the Tallawahs at 41/5 in the seventh over, when Russell joined Lewis (51). What followed was mayhem – Russell blazed 121* in 49 balls, and his stand with Lewis fetched 161. With his 13th six, he sealed a stunning four-wicket victory for the Tallawahs with three balls left.

Seventh wicket – Lasith Abeyratne and Pawlua Anuruddha, 2015-16

A big defeat was on the cards for Colombo Cricket Club when they slumped to 98/6 in reply to Chilaw Marians’ 228/9 in this AIA Premier T20 match at the Colts Cricket Club Ground in Colombo. But, thanks to a stand of 107* between Abeyratne (56*) and Anuruddha (50*), they were able to restrict the defeat margin to 18. This bettered the seventh-wicket mark of 100 set by Jagadeesha Suchith and Harbhajan Singh for Mumbai Indians against Kings XI Punjab in 2015.

Eighth wicket – Azhar Mahmood and Isuru Udana, 2012

Chasing 172 against Uva Next in the first semifinal of the inaugural Sri Lanka Premier League, Wayamba United imploded from 14/0 to 27/7 under lights at Colombo’s Premadasa Stadium. Mahmood, the experienced former Pakistani all-rounder, was joined by Udana (42) at this stage. They set about limiting the damage, and proceeded to share in a stand of 120 that was broken only in the final over. Mahmood finished at 75*, but could not prevent a 20-run loss for his side.  

Ninth wicket – Corey Anderson and Josh Davey, 2017

Defending a total of 181/7, Surrey seemed to have taken complete control by reducing Somerset to 106/8 in this NatWest T20 Blast game at The Oval. Anderson, who had come in at 33/5, was still there in the middle though. With Scottish paceman Davey for company, the swashbuckling New Zealander nearly took Somerset to a famous win – with seven needed in four balls, he was run out for a 45-ball 81, thus ending a stand of 69. Surrey ultimately squeezed home by two runs.  

Tenth wicket – Grant Elliott and Zulfiqar Babar, 2015-16

The Quetta Gladiators must have had set their sights on a sizeable total in their Pakistan Super League match against Peshawar Zalmi at Sharjah when their openers raced to a 40-run stand inside five overs. But Zalmi captain Shahid Afridi’s spell of 5/7 sent the score hurtling to a dire 66/9. It was left to Elliott to avoid a major embarrassment, and the New Zealander did his bit by putting on 63 for the last wicket with Babar. Nevertheless, Zalmi coasted to an eight-wicket win.

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Rustom Deboo is a cricket aficionado and freelance writer from Mumbai. He is an ardent devotee of T...

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