Test Records: Most consecutive wins in history

Australia were a force to be reckoned with in the late 90s and early 2000s in red-ball cricket. Here is a look at their 16-test match winning streak.

Australia went on a 16-match test winning streak. Their impeccable record of 16-match win streak was only equalled by their own team during the 2005-08 period. It is highly unlikely that their record of 16 test win streak will ever be broken. Nowadays, teams like England, Australia and India are almost impossible to defeat at their home. So if any team were to replicate or match Australia’s streak they would need a great squad of players who can win at varying conditions. Here is a look at their 16-match win streak from 1999-2001.

Australia tour of Zimbabwe

  • Vs Zimbabwe (Only test)

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Australia started their streak against Zimbabwe in the only test they played in the country. Zimbabwe after winning the toss opted to bat first and were bowled out for 194 runs. Neil Johnson top scored for Zimbabwe with 75 runs while Glenn McGrath and Shane Warne picked up three wickets each for Australia. 

In the second innings, Zimbabwe started positively with the ball in hand as they removed both Australian openers with just seven runs on the board. Skipper, Steve Waugh scored 151 runs while his brother Mark was dismissed after scoring 90. Justin Langer scored 44 runs while Damien Fleming lower down the order scored 65 runs as Australia reached a total of 422 runs and took a lead of 228 runs.

Zimbabwe were better with the bat in the third innings. The hosts scored 232 runs with Murray Goodwin scoring 91 and Trevor Gripper scoring 60. McGrath and Warne once again picked up three wickets each with Colin Miller also picking up three wickets. The Australian team were given a target of five runs. Blewett hit a four and a wide meant that they won the match by 10 wickets in just three balls.

Pakistan tour of Australia

  • Vs Pakistan (1st test)

Pakistan toured Australia for a 3-match test series. At Brisbane, in the first test, Australia won the toss and decided to bowl first. Four of the Pakistani batters scored half-centuries but none of them were able to convert their starts into three-digit scores. Saeed Anwar scored 61 runs while in the middle order, Inzamam-ul-Haq and Mohammad Yousuf scored 88 and 95 runs respectively. Batting at number 9, wicketkeeper Moin Khan scored 61 runs. For Australia, Damien Fleming took four wickets while McGrath and Scott Muller took two wickets each. 

Australia scored 575 runs in the first innings with openers, Michael Slater and Blewett scoring 169 and 89 runs respectively. Mark Waugh scored a century and Adam Gilchrist and Warne scored in the 80s.

Anwar once again performed brilliantly for the visitors scoring 119 runs. Yousuf in the middle order scored 75 runs as Pakistan scored 281 runs and gave Australia a target of 74 runs. The Australian openers once again reached the target without being dismissed as they won the match by 10 wickets.

  • Vs Pakistan (2nd test)

At Hobart. Australia once again elected to field first after winning the toss. The visitors were bowled out for 222 runs with Mohammad Wasim top scoring for them with 91 runs. For Australia, Muller and Warne took three wickets each while McGrath and Fleming took two wickets each.

Slater narrowly missed out on his century in the second innings after being dismissed for 97 runs. Langer also scored a half-century as Australia were dismissed for 246 runs. For Pakistan, Saqlain Mushtaq took 6 wickets and was instrumental in restricting Australia to a lead of just 24 runs.

Pakistan needed a big score to challenge the Aussies in their own backyard and their batting shone at the right moment with Anwar scoring 78 runs, Ijaz Ahmed scoring 82 runs and Inazamam scoring 118 runs. Pakistan scored 392 runs, while on the other hand on a pitch that was assisting spin, Warne took a fifer.

With the target of defending 369 in front of them, the Pakistani bowlers started positively dismissing half of the Australian team for 126 runs, but a 238-run stand between Langer and Gilchrist for the 6th wicket sealed the game for Australia. Langer was dismissed for 127 runs with just five runs remaining to reach the target. Gilchrist remained not out with 149 runs as the hosts won the match by 4 wickets.

  • Vs Pakistan (3rd test)

At Perth, in the final test, Pakistan won the toss and elected to bat first. It was a great bowling performance from the Australian fast bowlers to dismiss Pakistan for just 155 runs. Michael Kasprowicz picked up four wickets while McGrath and Fleming took three wickets each. 

Australia comfortably took the game out of the reach of Pakistan in the second innings. Langer scored 144 runs but the star performer was Ricky Ponting scoring 197 runs to help Australia reach a total of 451 runs. Mohammad Akram took five wickets for Pakistan.

Pakistan trailed by 296 runs and were dismissed for just 276 runs by the Australian bowlers. Ijaz Ahmed scored a century and skipper, Wasim Akram scored a half-century as Australia won the match by an innings and 20 runs.

India tour of Australia

  • Vs India (1st test)

India toured Australia for a three-match test series starting with the first match at Adelaide where Australia won the toss and elected to bat first. Skipper, Steve Waugh and Ponting scored centuries while Warne scored 86 runs as Australia scored 441 runs in the first innings. For India, Venkatesh Prasad took three wickets.

In the second innings, every batter from the Indian middle order got starts but failed to convert those into big scores. VVS Laxman scored 41 runs, Rahul Dravid scored 35 runs, skipper Sachin Tendulkar scored 61 runs and Sourav Ganguly scored 60 runs. Warne took 4 wickets, Fleming took three while McGrath took two.

In the third innings, Blewett scored 88 runs and Gilchrist scored 43 runs. Australia declared after 239 runs for the loss of 8 wickets giving India a target of 396 runs. The Indian batting crumbled with four players getting dismissed for ducks. The visitors managed to score just 110 runs and lost the match by 285 runs.

  • Vs India (2nd test)

In the boxing day test match at Melbourne, India bowled first after winning the toss. Australia scored 405 runs even though none of the batters scored a century. Blewett scored 91 runs while Ponting and Gilchrist scored 67 and 78 respectively. For India, Javagal Srinath took four wickets. 

India was bundled out for 238 runs as Tendulkar received no support from his teammates. Tendulkar scored 116 runs while only two other batters scored more than 12 runs. Brett Lee took five wickets for Australia handing them a lead of 167 runs.

Australia in the second innings declared after scoring 208 runs for the loss of five wickets giving India a target of 376 runs. In the 4th innings, Sachin once again scored 52 runs which went in vain as none of the Indian batters were able to score a half-century. Fleming, Lee and Mark Waugh took two wickets each.

  • Vs India (3rd test)

In the final test in Sydney, India opted to bat first after winning the toss. Once again, the Indian batting put on a disappointing show as they were dismissed for just 150 runs. Tendulkar was the top-scorer scoring 45 runs. For Australia, McGrath took a fifer while Lee took four wickets.

Australia declared in the second innings after scoring 552 runs for the loss of five wickets. Langer scored a double century while Gilchrist scored a century. Tendulkar dismissed Langer for 223 runs. Australia took a lead of 402 runs in the second innings.

India were bowled out for just 261 runs with Laxman scoring 167 while opening the batting. McGrath once again took a fifer and completed his 10-wicket haul in the match. Australia won the match by an innings and 141 runs.

Australia tour of New Zealand

  • Vs New Zealand (1st test)

Australia toured their trans-tasmanian rival, New Zealand for a three-match series. Australia elected to bat first after winning the toss in the first test at Auckland. Daniel Vettori’s 5-wicket haul meant that the Australians were dismissed for 214 runs with Mark Waugh remaining not out with 72 runs.

The batters from New Zealand were not able to put on a commanding score. The Blackcaps were bowled out for 163 runs as McGrath took four wickets and Warne picked up three wickets.

After getting a lead of 51 runs, Australia scored 229 runs in the third innings thanks to a knock of 59 runs from Gilchrist. Vettori took 7 wickets in the third innings. He finished with 12 wickets for the match. New Zealand were given a target of 281 and scored 218 thanks to Craig McMillan scoring 78 runs. For Australia, Colin Miller took five wickets as they won the match by 62 runs.

  • Vs New Zealand (2nd test)

New Zealand elected to bat first in the second test at Wellington. Chris Cairns scored a century while Nathan Astle scored 61 runs as New Zealand scored 298 runs. For Australia, Warne took four wickets and Lee took three wickets. Australia scored 419 runs in the second innings, skipper, Steve Waugh scored 151 runs while opener Slater scored 143 runs. For New Zealand, Cairns and McMillan took three wickets each.

In reply, the hosts scored 294 runs thanks to a couple of knocks of 60s from skipper, Stephen Fleming and Cairns. Lee and Warne took three wickets each for the visitors. Chasing 174 runs, Langer scored a half-century while Mark Waugh scored 44 runs to win the match for Australia by 6 wickets.

  • Vs New Zealand (3rd test)

Australia won the toss in the third test at Hamilton and put the hosts into bat. The Blackcaps were bowled out for just 232 runs. McMillan top-scored with 79 runs. Brett Lee took five wickets while McGrath took four wickets. Damien Martyn and Gilchrist scored 89 and 75 runs respectively to get a lead of 20 runs scoring 252 runs. Shayne O’Connor took a 5-wicket haul for New Zealand.

Cairns scored 71 runs in the third innings but received very little support from the other batters as New Zealand scored 229 runs. Lee took three wickets while McGrath, Miller and Warne took two wickets each. Langer scored 122 runs as Australia chased the target of 210 runs and won the match by 6 wickets.

West Indies tour of Australia

  • Vs West Indies (1st test)

West Indies toured Australia for a five-match series. In the first match at Australia’s fortress, Brisbane, they won the toss and chose to field first. West Indies were bowled out for just 82 runs with Darren Ganga top-scoring with just 20 runs. McGrath took 6 wickets. 

Australia scored 332 runs in the second innings thanks to half-centuries from Slater and Brett Lee. Marlon Black and Mervyn Dillon took four and three wickets respectively. West Indies were once again bowled out for a low score. Shivnarine Chanderpaul scored 62 runs as the visitors were dismissed for 124 runs. They lost the first match by an innings and 126 runs.

  • Vs West Indies (2nd test)

At Perth, in the second match, Australia once again won the toss and chose to bowl first. Wicketkeeper, Ridley Jacobs narrowly missed out on his century as he remained not out with 96 runs. West Indies scored 196 runs in the first innings. McGrath and Jason Gillespie took three wickets each while Brett Lee and Stuart McGill took two wickets each.

Australia declared in the second innings after scoring 396 runs with the loss of 8 wickets. Mark Waugh scored a century while Matthew Hayden and Gilchrist scored half-centuries. Courtney Walsh, Black, Dillon and Nixon McLean took two wickets each. West Indies were dismissed for 173 runs in the third innings as they lost the match by an innings and 27 runs. Skipper, Jimmy Adams scored 40 runs not out, while Wavell Hinds scored 41 runs for the West Indies. Brett Lee picked up a fifer for Australia.

  • Vs West Indies (3rd test)

West Indies after opting to bat first at Adelaide in the third put on a much improved batting performance. Brian Lara led the charge scoring 182 runs while no other batter managed to score a half-century as West Indies scored 391 runs. Miller and Gillespie took 5 wickets each. 

In the second innings, Australia scored 403 runs as Slater and Ponting scored 83 and 92 runs respectively. Mark Waugh and Hayden too scored half-centuries. Dillon picked three wickets for the visitors and restricted Australia to a lead of just 12 runs. 

Australia bowled out West Indies for just 141 runs as Lara top-scored with just 39 runs. Miller picked up his second 5-wicket haul of the match. The hosts chased the target of 129 comfortably as Langer scored 48 runs which saw Australia winning the match by five wickets.

  • Vs West Indies (4th test)

Australia batted first for the first time in the series as West Indies won the toss and chose to field first in the boxing day test match at Melbourne. Skipper, Steve scored 121 runs and remained not out as Australia scored 264 runs in the first innings. Dillon took four wickets while, Walsh, McLean and Colin Stuart took two wickets each. West Indies were bowled out for just 165 runs with Marlon Samuels scoring 60*. Andy Bichel took a five-wicket haul for Australia.

Australia declared after scoring 265 runs for the loss of five wickets giving West Indies a target of 462 in the fourth innings. Langer scored 80 runs while Mark scored 78 for Australia. West Indies were dismissed for 109 runs as Gillespie took 6 wickets. Australia won the 4th test by 352 runs.

  • Vs West Indies (5th test)

West Indies for the second time in the series won the toss and opted to bat first. They scored 272 runs thanks to a couple of knocks of the 70s from the openers, Sherwin Campbell and Wavell Hinds. Stuart McGill took 7 wickets for Australia. The hosts scored 452 runs in the second innings with Steve scoring a century and Slater missing out on a century after getting dismissed for 96 runs. Mahendra Nagamootoo took three wickets for West Indies.

Campbell, Ramnaresh Sarwan, wicketkeeper Jacobs and Nagamootoo made half-centuries as West Indies scored 352 runs in the third innings. Miller and McGrath took four and three wickets respectively. Australia chased the target of 173 runs pretty easily with the loss of just four wickets. Slater scored 86 runs and remained not out in the 4th innings to win the match for Australia by 6 wickets.

Australia tour of India

  • Vs India (1st test)

India played Australia once again but this time in their own backyard. Australia won the toss in the first match and elected to bowl first at Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai. India were bowled out for 176 runs. Tendulkar top-scored for the host with 76 runs. Warne took four wickets while McGrath took three wickets. In reply, Australia scored 349 runs in the second innings. Hayden and Gilchrist scored centuries for the visitors. Harbhajan Singh picked up four wickets for India.

Tendulkar scored 65 runs as India was once again bowled out for a low score. The hosts scored 219 runs and gave Australia a target of 47 runs. Gillespie and Mark Waugh took three wickets each for Australia. Australia scored 47 runs in the 4th innings without losing a single wicket.

Conclusion

Australia’s 16-test match win streak was broken by India in the following match in Kolkata. The match at Eden Gardens was very and it took something exceptional from Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman to stop the Australian winning streak. But India’s win in Kolkata should not take anything away from Australia’s historic record-breaking winning streak. Players like Adam Gilchrist, the Waugh brothers, Glenn McGrath, Brett Lee, Shane Warne among other players were exceptional for a two-year period which allowed Australia to win 16 matches in a row.