Lowest Innings Total in Test


Lowest Innings Total in Test


Test Cricket is considered the ultimate format of the game. Test cricket led to the inception of the game. It is also touted to be the most difficult format. Test Cricket is synonymous with patience and perseverance. To excel in the format, you need a lot of those. 

For a team to win the game, one must notch a good total to set the foundation. Over the years, we have seen mammoth totals being put on the board. Players have played some sensational knocks. However, unlike other formats, Test Cricket has equal opportunities for bowlers to dominate the game. And they have done that quite often. 

Often, bowlers have ripped apart the greatest of batting line ups. Owing to some sensational spells, the teams have succumbed to low totals. In this article, we look at the top 5 lowest innings totals in Tests: 


#5 South Africa: 36-run total against Australia in 1932

In the early days of cricket, Australia was a brute force. Their bowlers had the ability to decimate any batting line up. They did that against South Africa in 1932 home series. The fifth Test between the nations saw South Africa getting bundled out for just 36 runs. Skipper, H Cameron top scored with 11, while the rest of the batsmen fell in single digits. Ironmonger led the charge with the ball, picking 5 wickets for just 6 runs, while L Nash claimed four wickets too. 

The second time when South Africa came out to bat, they were bundled out for another low total of 45 runs. Australia won that game by an innings and 72 runs. 


#4 South Africa: 35-run total against England in 1899

South Africa has made a lot of low scores over the years in Test Cricket. The 2nd Test between England and South Africa saw the latter getting bundling out for just 35 runs. 

Batted first, England too were bowled out for just 92 runs. However, England bowlers exhibited superb bowling to bundle South Africa out for just 177. England then batted beautifully in the third innings to give a decent total to chase.  

In pursuit of the 245-run target, South Africa was bundled out for just 35 runs in the fourth inning, thereby handing a 210-run victory to the visitors. 


#3 South Africa: 30 run-total against England in 1924

South Africa also holds the record of scoring the lowest inning total in Test Cricket. On the back of stellar performances from the top four, England posted a mammoth total of 438 runs in the first innings. In reply, South Africa put on one of the worst performances in their history of Test Cricket.

A Gilligan took 6 wickets, while M Tate picked 4 as South Africa was bowled for just 30 runs in their inning. No player could ever dare to touch a double-figure mark. Skipper H Taylor top-scored with 7 runs.


#2 South Africa: 30 run-total against England in 1896 

South Africa in the late 90s wasn’t the best batting side. They put on the worst ever performance in their Test cricketing history against England in 1996.

After England has scored 185 runs in the first innings, South Africa batter couldn’t put on a good show in the second inning. It was so bad they could only post 93 runs in the second inning. South Africa’s embarrassment didn’t end there as they were folded for their lowest ever total in test cricket in the fourth innings of the match. In pursuit of the 318-run total, South Africa got all out for just 30 runs.


#1 New Zealand: 26-run total against England in 1955

Not South Africa, it’s New Zealand, who holds the record for scoring the lowest inning total in Test Cricket. Against England in 1955, New Zealand posted a decent 200-run total in the first innings. England scored 46 more runs in the second innings as they got folded for 246 runs in the second inning.

While New Zealand looked to post a competitive total in the third innings and set a good target for England, little did they know what was about to unfold,

On the back of exceptional performances from England’s bowling unit, New Zealand were bowled out for just 26 runs. As many as five players got out for zero during that innings. Till date, it is the lowest inning total ever posted in Test Cricket. England won that Test by an inning and 20 runs.