Cricket legend Sunil Gavaskar turns 72: Greatest records held by the ‘Little Master’


Guwahati:  India legend Sunil Gavaskar is celebrating his 72nd birthday today (July 10). One of the greatest batsmen to have graced the game, Gavaskar went on to play 125 Tests and 108 ODIs during his illustrious career. He also led Team India across formats and captained the Men in Blue to a title victory in the World Championship of Cricket in 1985.

He was a member of the Kapil Dev-led 1983 World Cup-winning team which defeated mighty West Indies in the final. Gavaskar took up commentary after retirement and is a veteran cricket commentator. He also served as the interim BCCI president for work related to IPL.

As Gavaskar turns 72, here’s a look at some of the greatest records held by the ‘Little Master’ –

First batsman to score 10000 runs in Test cricket

Gavaskar was the first-ever batsman to breach the 10000-run mark in Test cricket. The right-handed batsman achieved the milestone against Pakistan in his penultimate Test match. The history was created in Ahmedabad in March 1987.

Gavaskar played one more Test match before giving up the red-ball game. He finished his Test career with 10122 runs. Gavaskar scored 34 tons, a record which he held for nearly 19 years. Sachin Tendulkar broke his record in 2005.

Only Indian batsman to play 100 consecutive Test matches

Gavaskar also holds the elite record of playing most consecutive Test matches for Team India. In fact, he is the only Indian to play more than 100 Tests back-to-back. Gavaskar, who made his Test debut in 1971, started his streak in 1975. The streak ended just a month before his final Test match.

He played 106 consecutive Tests during those 12 years and remained a pivotal member of Team India. Gavaskar also captained the team during this period. Under him, India won 9 out of 47 Tests. India lost 8 matches while 30 Tests ended in a draw.

Among Indians, Rahul Dravid sits next to Gavaskar. He played 93 back-to-back Tests. The overall list is topped by former England captain Alastair Cook, who played 159 consecutive Tests.

Fastest Indian to score 5000 Test runs

Gavaskar’s greatness can be adjudged by the fact that his 42-year-old record of being the fastest Indian to cross the 5000-run mark in Test cricket still stands. The likes of Virender Sehwag, Sachin Tendulkar, Virat Kohli, Rahul Dravid and Cheteshwar Pujara came close to breaking the record but all of them fell short.

Gavaskar completed his 5000th run in his 95th innings – against Australia in Bengaluru in 1979. Following him is Sehwag, who took 99 innings while Tendulkar took 103 innings to score 5000 runs. Both Dravid and Pujara needed 108 innings to complete 5000 runs.

Overall, the list is topped by Don Bradman, who only needed 56 innings to score 5000 Test runs. John Hobbs (91) sits next to him on the list. The 3rd spot is shared by Gavakskar, Garry Sobers, Viv Richards and Matthew Hayden.