List of Tied Test Matches in Cricket History

Cricket is an unpredictable game, with every ball carrying some climax to the game. At one point, it seems everything is going fine, and then suddenly, a dismissal or a big six might change the course of the game.

Such scenarios are more on display in limited-overs cricket, where every moment counts. However, Test cricket is also not too far behind in throwing astonishing plot twists in the game.

One thrilling aspect that leaves everyone on the edge of their seats is witnessing tied matches. Limited-overs cricket witnesses matches resulting in ties now and then, but Test cricket has also recorded 2 such instances.

In this article, let’s look at the tied Test matches in cricket history. (Before we delve deeper, first understand the rules about tied Test matches here.)

1. Australia vs West Indies | Brisbane, 1960

The first-ever tied Test match dates back to December 1960. The West Indies were touring Australia for a 5-match Test series, and the thrilling tie unfolded in the first match itself.

After electing to bat first, the Windies cruised to 453 runs on the board, riding on the back of a daunting 132 from Garry Sobers. Alan Davidson starred with the ball for the hosts as he picked up a fifer in the first innings.

Then Australia came to bat, with openers providing a steady start. But it was Norm O’Neill, whose 181-run knock helped the hosts take a small yet crucial lead of 53 runs before the Windies bowled them out for 505.

In their 2nd innings, the Windies mustered 284 runs and set a target of 233 runs in front of the Aussies. Davidson once again grabbed a five-wicket haul by rattling 6 scalps for 87 runs.

In pursuit of the target, the hosts lost 2 quick wickets early on and were in a tricky situation at 92/6. Then the star with the ball, Alan Davidson (80), wielded his willow along with captain Richie Benaud (52).

Their fightback put Australia in contention of winning the match, but a bigger twist was waiting to show up in the match. The hosts lost Davidson on 226, and the equation came down to 7 runs to win with 3 wickets in hand.

The match went into the final over with 6 runs still required to win the game. However, Benuad returned to the pavilion caught out, and Wally Grout was run out.

With Australia on 232/9 and scores equal, they needed 1 run off 2 deliveries. The last batting pair, Ian Meckiff and Lindsay Kline, tried to steal a run, but Joe Solomon rattled the stumps with a fiery throw, ending the match in a tie.

2. India vs Australia | Chennai, 1986

After 16 years of the first-ever tied Test, Australia found themselves embroiled in yet another exhilarating tie, though this time against India. Coincidentally, this nail-biting encounter also unfurled in the first match of the 3-match series.

Australia decided to bat first, and the batters proved the decision correct. Dean Jones smacked a brilliant 210-run knock, along with 2 centuries from David Boon (122) and captain Allan Border (106). That batting onslaught put the visitors in the driver’s seat, declaring the innings on 574/7.

The Indian bowlers tried to counter the Australian bowling attack but were bowled out for 397. Had it not been for captain Kapil Dev’s gritty 119 runs, India would have conceded a big lead or would have been asked to follow on.

Taking the lead of 177 runs, Australia further added 170 runs before declaring the innings and setting a target of 348 runs. India had the daunting task of chasing the target in 87 overs on the final day.

Sunil Gavaskar, who struggled in the first innings, scored 90 runs and set the course of the game in India’s favour. Other batters also cheaped in with crucial contributions, but the Aussie spin duo Greg Mattews and Ray Bright made things tough for the hosts.

India looked steady on 331/6, then Bright struck 3 wickets in a span of 13 runs to leave India on the edge on 344 with 1 wicket in hand. Now, India needed 4 runs to cross the winning line in the last over. 

Ravi Shastri was set on one end, with the last batter, Maninder Singh, on the other. Both managed 3 runs in the 4 balls, and it all came down to 1 run required off 2 balls.

With the scores level, the pressure was on Maninder Singh to take India over the ropes. However, Matthews trapped Singh LBW, giving us only the second tied Test match.

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