Book Review: Cricket Milestones
By A Aziz Rehmatullah
I have had the passion of collecting the cricket records for well over half a century now. I was always fascinated by the statistical aspects of the game and it gave me enormous pleasure to maintain records of Tests and first-class matches on a regular basis since childhood. One-day Internationals came many years later while Twenty20 Internationals have begun only recently. Cricket has certainly changed a great deal over the years and there are far too many matches taking place in every part of the world these days that what used to be in the decades gone by. At the same time there are greater resources available to the contemporary statisticians unlike the past.
Shahzad Ali Khan is one of those hard-working cricket statisticians who look for the minutest of details instead of just filling in the numbers. I tell you by experience that it's very arduous task indeed to keep a track of the so many matches going on simultaneously and update the records accordingly. His second book Cricket Milestones is an outstanding effort for he has put together many of those records that are not to be changed. The compilation of 'firsts' is first of it's kind in cricket history.
Cricket Milestones has the batting, bowling, fielding and wicket-keeping records of the first-timers in Tests, One-day Internationals, Twenty20 Internationals and First-class matches. Obviously these records can never change.Then there are the records that could change but may take many years for them to be broken. I am talking about the 'quickest' section. Dennis Lillee has taken 300 wickets in the least number of Tests while Mutiah Muralitharan holds similar record for 400 wickets.
Now the readers can discover quickly as to who was the first batsman to score 1,000 runs in Tests or the first bowler to take 100 wickets in ODIs. There are separate records for the all-rounders and captains too.
I am sure that the book will prove an invaluable source of information for both professional cricket observers and million of fans who enjoy the game of cricket. The 102-page Cricket Milestones is a most useful book and it should be a companion of every cricket lover.