A statistical review of Quaid-e-Azam Trophy 2020-21

Sohail Ali

LAHORE, Jan 06 (APP):The 63rd edition of the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy had a thrilling finish with the final between Central Punjab, the defending champions, and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa ending in a tie.

A number of records were broken during the exciting 31-match tournament, played across four Karachi venues.

Statistician Mazher Arshad on Wednesday looks at some interesting statistics.

Tied first-class matches.

In the 248 years history of first-class cricket, just 67 out of 60,296 matches have ended in a tie, which gives the result a probability of mere 0.11 percent.

On 5 January, that minute probability kicked in at the National Stadium Karachi where Central Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa were declared joint-winners of the first-class Quaid-e-Azam Trophy 2020-21 after the final between them ended with scores and first innings points levelled.

It was first time anywhere in the world that the final of a first-class competition ended in a tie whereas on Pakistan soil it was only the fifth tied first-class match after Lahore Blues v Bahawalpur in 1961, MCB v Pakistan Railways in 1983, Peshawar v Bahawalpur in 1988 and HBL v WAPDA in 2011.

Tied First-Class Matches in Pakistan
Year Venue Match
1961 Bahawalpur Lahore Blues v Bahawalpur
1983 Sialkot MCB v Pakistan Railways
1988 Bahawalpur Peshawar v Bahawalpur
2011 Lahore HBL v WAPDA
2021 Karachi Central Punjab v Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

Central Punjab were chasing 356 – a target no team has achieved in 66 years of first-class cricket at the National Stadium. They lost their last wicket on 355 making it the fourth highest total in a tied chase surpassing India’s 347 in the historic Test with Australia in Chennai in 1986.

Highest 4th innings totals in tied first-class matches
Total Match Venue Year
453 Somerset v West Indies A Taunton 2002
436 Sussex v Kent Hove 1991
380 Essex v Warwickshire Birmingham 2003
355 Central Punjab v Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Karachi 2021
347 India vs Australia Chennai 1986
*The following list does not include 402 by Don Bradman XI’s vs AL Hassett’s XI at MCG in 1948. That game is classified as a tie in record books but Bradman’s side was not bowled out.37-year-old record broken.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa batsman Kamran Ghulam created a record for most runs in one edition of the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy by scoring 1,249 runs in the tournament. He did it at an average of 62.45 and with 5 centuries, including the one in the final.
Saadat Ali, who scored 1,217 runs for HBFC in the 1983-84 season, held the previous record for most runs.

Kamran was also the first batsman with 1,100+ runs since Asad Shafiq amassed 1,104 runs in the 2009-10 season.

Most runs in one edition of Quaid-e-Azam Trophy
Name Inns Runs Avg Season
Kamran Ghulam 20 1,249 62.45 2020-21
Saadat Ali 18 1,217 71.58 1983-84
Rizwan-uz-Zaman 25 1,138 49.47 1989-90
Asad Shafiq 20 1,104 64.94 2009-10
Younis Khan 14 1,102 110.20 1999-00
Off-spinners on the top

With 67 wickets at an average of 25.08, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Sajid Khan finished the tournament as the highest wicket-taker. Fittingly, he also took the last wicket of the season that tied the final. It is first time in eight seasons that an off-spinner is the highest wicket-taker of the tournament (the last being Atif Maqbool – 55 wickets in the 2012-13 season).
Sajid’s tally of 67 wickets is also the highest for an off-spinner in Quaid-e-Azam Trophy since 1995-96 when Bahawalpur’s Murtaza Hussain took 72 wickets at 15.08.

Fast bowlers back in action
Five fast bowlers took more than 25 wickets, which is a big change from the previous season when not a single pacer crossed the 25-wicket mark.

Central Punjab’s captain Hasan Ali – who won the Player of the Tournament and Player of the Final awards – led the pacers’ chart with 43 wickets at 20.06 followed by his teammate Waqas Maqsood (41 wickets).

Three other pacers with 25+ wickets in the 2020-21 season were: Tabish Khan (30 wickets for Sindh), Taj Wali (27 wickets for Balochistan) and Shahnawaz Dhani (26 wickets for Sindh).

Runs per wicket
Average runs per wicket across the last two editions of the first-class Quaid-e-Azam Trophy is 35.04, a figure that underlines a vast improvement in the quality of pitches and balls in Pakistan’s domestic cricket.

In 62 matches in the two seasons, 62,512 runs have been scored for 1,784 wickets. Since 2019, no first-class competition in the world has registered better runs per wicket.
For context, runs per wicket in the 2017-18 and 2018-19 seasons was only 23.96.
Highest runs per wicket in first-class tournaments since 2019 (Min: 40 matches)
Country Matches Runs/Wicket

Quaid-e-Azam Trophy Pakistan 62 35.04
Four Day Franchise South Africa 51 32.34
Sheffield Shield Australia 50 31.25
Premier League Tournament Sri Lanka 181 30.57
Plunket Shield New Zealand 41 30.33
County Championship England 126 29.52
CSA Three-day Provincial Cup South Africa 95 27.75
Bob Willis Trophy England 46 27.46
Ranji Trophy India 194 26.79
WICB PCL West Indies 49 25.99