August 6, 1999 – When Peter Such earned standing ovation despite bagging a duck

Peter Such spent 72 minutes for his 51-ball duck in England's first innings.

Peter Such
Peter Such. (Photo Source: Getty Images)

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New Zealand failed to win a Test match on back to back tours of England after registering their maiden Test win in the country during the 1986 tour. The 4-match series in 1999 saw New Zealand’s winless Test streak in England extend to seven matches. The hosts won the first Test match in Birmingham by a margin of seven wickets. The Kiwis came back strong in the following game at the Lord’s which they won by nine wickets to square the series.

The crucial 3rd Test was hosted by the Manchester’s Old Trafford where England elected to bat first after a delayed start. England batsmen except Mark Ramprakash failed to make their starts count. Five of their top seven batters faced 50+ balls but only Ramprakash got into the 30s. Only 61 overs were possible on the first day due to wet outfield and the rain which came in the afternoon.

A duck that earned a standing ovation!

Resuming the second day at 108/5, the English team was pushed to 152/8 before the lunch interval. Peter Such walked to bat at No.10 and joined Ramprakash at the crease. England was quite slow through the innings as their run-rate crept under two. The new batsman Peter Such replicated the same as he didn’t score a run during his brief stay. Peter kept negotiating the New Zealand bowlers but couldn’t sneak a run.

Peter’s resilience finally came to an end on his 51st ball when a delivery that he defended from Daniel Vettori lobed into the hands of the short-leg fielder. Though he failed to open his account, Peter got a standing ovation from the home crowd. The off-spinner acknowledged the applause from the crowd by raising his helmet. He faced 51 deliveries during his 72-minute stay at the crease.

A record duck during his time!

Peter Such’s duck was the 3rd longest duck in Test cricket in terms of balls faced at that time and also the then 2nd longest in terms of time batted. The longest duck in terms of minutes lasted in Test cricket at that time was held by Geoff Allott who lasted 101 minutes during the 1999 Auckland Test held only five months before Peter’s long duck. During this duck, Peter added 31 runs in 17.3 overs for the 10th wicket.

Ramprakash finished with an unbeaten 227-ball 69 as the first innings of the hosts ended at 199. Centuries from Nathan Astle (101) and Craig McMillan (101*) powered the Kiwis to 496/9 before the declaration. Less than 100 overs of play was possible in the last two days due to rain and bad-light as the match ended in a draw. England made 181/2 in the 68 overs they played before the match was called off. The Blackcaps won the final Test at The Oval by 83 runs and clinched the Test series with a 2-1 margin.