Stats: Players who have scored century in the first session on the first day of a Test

Stats: Players who have scored century in the first session on the first day of a Test

David Warner of Australia
David Warner of Australia celebrates his century during day one of the Third Test. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

David Warner, on the opening day of the 3rd Test against Pakistan at the Sydney Cricket Ground, did something that only four batsmen have been able to do in the entire 140-year-old history of cricket. The vice-captain of Australia walked in to open the innings and set the stage on fire and enthralled the crowd with a scintillating 78-ball century.

While it’s nothing of a surprise that the left-hander registered a century, it was quite normal for a batsman of his reputation ad he has already done it 17 times in his career. Scoring brisk runs wasn’t a surprise either. He had already smashed two sub-100 balls century including an 84 ball hundred against West Indies at the very same venue during the 2016 series.

But, what made his knock special that it came inside the opening session of the first day, something which happened only after a span of 40 years in Test cricket and as mentioned above only five cricketers overall including Warner has been able to achieve this rare feat. His knock was studded with 17 fours and the achieved the rare feat four minutes before lunch.

His knock was studded with 17 fours and the achieved the rare feat four minutes before lunch. His spectacular knock gave a quick batting master class to the 20-year-old Matt Renshaw who emulated his senior’s feat and also went on to register his maiden century.

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This record has now put him in a list of legendary players, a highly exclusive club which includes his predecessors Victor Trumper, Charles Macartney and Donald Bradman, and Pakistan’s Majid Khan.

The first time when spectators witnessed something this awesome was at the start of the 19th century when Victor Trumper, a remarkable batsman of his time, decimated the traditional rivals England during one his four visits to England in 1902. The fourth Test of the 5-match series produced the first occasion when a batsman scored a century in the first session of the opening day of a Test match. After skipper Joe Darling chose to bat first, Trumper, known for his mastery of batting on the most unsuitable batting pitches walked in and cracked 104 runs in 115 minutes.

The second occasion came on 10th July 1926 when Charles Macartney emulated the feat after coming to bat at No. 3 against England. Australia lost its opener Warren Bardsley for a golden duck. But the early damage was repaired by Macartney and Bill Woodfull who together put up 235 for the second wicket with the former smashing 151 in 173 minutes after reaching his century in the first session.

The third time was achieved by none other than cricket’s favourite son – Sir Donald Bradman. There is no need to say that the right-handed batsman and former Australia skipper who ended his career with an astounding average of 99.94 had magical batting powers. In the 3rd Test during the 1930 Ashes contest, England was at the receiving end of the spectacle once against as the mighty Bradman.

England snapped Archie Jackson cheaply for 1 run paving the way for Bradman to bat. The master did not mind and went on a rampage to not only hit a century in one session but also amplifying it into a triple century by the end of the day, another astonishing landmark. He ended the day unbeaten on 309 and eventually finished at 334, the then highest individual score by any batsman.

Majid Khan, on 30th November 1976 during the 3rd Test at the National Stadium, Karachi, became the only non-Australian to achieve this feat when he hammered the visiting New Zealand team headed by John Parker to all corners and hit an amazing 112 laced with 18 fours and 2 sixes. This was perhaps the last time when the rare feat was witnessed before Warner made a merry of Pakistan bowling attack.

Here is the table of players who have scored a century in the first session on the first day of a Test:

Runs Batsman Match Venue Year
103* VT Trumper (104) Aus v Eng Manchester 1902
112* CG Macartney (151) Aus v Eng Leeds 1926
105* DG Bradman (334) Aus v Eng Leeds 1930
108* Majid Khan (112) Pak v NZ Karachi 1976-77
100* DA Warner (113) Aus v Pak Sydney 2016-17

All the stats updated till 3rd Jan 2017.