On This Day: 22nd December in Cricket History

Cricket history has witnessed some unforgettable moments on December 22nd. Let’s revisit the significant events that unfolded on this day.

2013 – A Near-Record Chase at Wanderers

On this day in 2013, South Africa embarked on an epic chase at the Wanderers against India. Set a daunting target of 458, Faf du Plessis and AB de Villiers showcased brilliance with centuries, bringing South Africa within 56 runs of victory. However, their dismissals at crucial junctures left them needing 16 off the final 19 deliveries. Facing the dilemma of having Imran Tahir and the injured Morne Morkel at the crease, Vernon Philander and Dale Steyn resiliently batted out the overs, securing a famous draw amid loud boos from the stands.

1996 – Thrilling Draw in Harare

In Harare, a Test match between Zimbabwe and England ended in a thrilling draw with the scores level. The first Test to finish with parity was a source of frustration for England’s coach, David Lloyd. The match featured leg-side bowling tactics from Zimbabwe that irked Lloyd, prompting debates on whether a draw was the fitting result.

1963 – Birth of Brian McMillan

Born on this day in 1963, Brian McMillan, one of South Africa’s finest all-rounders, entered the cricketing world. Known for his aggressive approach with bat, ball, and vocal cords, McMillan contributed significantly to South African cricket. His dynamic style and impactful performances, including three Test centuries, left a lasting impression on the game.

2002 – Low-Scoring Series in New Zealand

In a series marked by shockingly low scores in New Zealand, India faced a challenging time. The Basin Reserve and Hamilton Tests witnessed both teams struggling to surpass 100 in their first innings. New Zealand emerged victorious in a low-scoring encounter, marking the first instance of the host nation winning more than one Test in a series against India.

1948 – Birth of Chris Old

Talented all-rounder Chris Old, born on this day in 1948, earned recognition despite challenges. Mike Brearley believed Old had the potential to be one of cricket’s greats. Old’s impactful performances, including a memorable spell of four wickets in five balls against Pakistan in 1978, showcased his skills.

2017 – Rohit Sharma’s Record T20I Century

In 2017, Rohit Sharma etched his name in the record books by smashing the joint-fastest T20I century off just 35 balls. His explosive innings led India to a colossal total of 260 against Sri Lanka in the second T20I. The record-setting century propelled India to a 3-0 series victory.

These are just a few glimpses of the cricketing history that unfolded on December 22nd, leaving an indelible mark on the sport.

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