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Test Cricket-the longest format of cricket

Test cricket is a cricket format. This is the longest format of cricket. Major cricket experts say that it is the highest standard of cricket. This is because test cricket means it test the team physically and mentally and at last the having mentally and physically strong wins the match.

So test matches are played between two national teams who have got the international test playing status from ICC that is ( international cricket council ) who give approval for their playing. Basically it conducts all the test matches. 

Test match is generally considered as the complete examination of a team’s endurance and ability. 


  1. History
  2. Test playing cricketing Nations
  3. Rules in Test Cricket
  4. Test match Competitions
  5. Test Rankings
  6. Conclusion
  7. FAQs


Beginning of Test Cricket

Basically, a cricket match was found in the late 18th century but there is no record of that time. It is known that cricket was found in England or the British in the 18th century but for lack of records it can not be proven that it was found in the 18th century.

Test cricket at the beginning
Test cricket old age

But it was seen that a test match was played between the USA and CANADA on 24 and 25 September 1844. But officially it is not considered as a test match. 

So later in 1877 England take a tour to Australia and a test match was played in Melbourne cricket ground between England and Australia is considered as the first official cricket match. Where the Australian team won that match comprehensively.

However, before 1877 English team had tours to Australia in 1861 and 1863 but that matches are officially not granted as test matches. 1861 and 1863 tour was famous for the attendance of a huge number of crowed, therefore the players and the sponsors got a good amount of profit.

History of The Ashes

England – Australia test match was looking like one of the greatest rivalries. When the Australian team tour to England in 1982 for the first time they won the match and again defeated English team comprehensively.

That match was played at Oval Cricket ground. After that defeat the British Journal, The Sporting Times posted a mockery obituary post of England Cricket Team – “The body will be cremated and the ashes taken to Australia.” 

On this Ad’s response, the English cricket captain Lvo Bligh said – “ We will regain the Ashes” during the England tour to Australia. And which they did eventually.

So after the victory, while returning from Australia, a few female fans gifted the England captain an urn filled up with the ashes of burned cricket stumps.

So after that, all the test tour that had made by either Australia to England or England to Australia was named The Ashes Series.

An Ashes Match
An Ashes Test Match

After all these things South Africa became the third team to play a test match in 1988. This match was played between South Africa and an under-strength England team.


As you already know for playing a test match you have to go got international test playing status from ICC. There are twelve nations who have got the status for playing test cricket till today’s date. The last team was Afganistan who got test status. The following list are the test playing nations-


Team England played its first-team match in Melbourne cricket ground against Australia in 1877. In that match, Australia won by a good margin.

England played a total 1022 test matches, which is the most by any test playing nations. England has the winning percentage of 36.30 which is the third-best.

Alastair Cook is the only English player to score more than 10,000 runs. He scored 12,472 runs in test cricket. James Anderson from England team has taken 584 wickets in 151 matches till April 19, 2020, which is most by any fast bowler.


The Australian team is the opponent of the first-ever test match that have played with England. So their first test match is in 1877. And they won in their first match.

They played a total of 830 test having a winning percentage of 47.34% which is the highest winning percentage for any test playing nation.

A test game
A test game of Australian team


South Africa played its first test match on March 1889 against England. They played a total of 436 test matches. And they have the winning percentage of 37.84% which is the second-highest winning percentage after Australia.


West Indies is the fourth team who got the status of test playing nation. They played their first match in 1928 against England. They played a total of 545 test matches and won 174 of them.


New Zealand took part in their first recognised Test cricket match against England in the 1929-30 season. They played a total of 442 test matches and won 101 matches. They have a winning percentage of 22.85%.


Sachin Hitting a ball
India vs Australia Test Match

India is the sixth ( 6th ) country who got international test status in 1932. That means India played its first test match in the year 1932 at Lord’s cricket ground against England.

India tastes its first Test victory in 1952. That is almost 20 years. In 1952 India won their first test series against Pakistan.

In 1967-1968 India manage to win its first series outside the subcontinent, against New-Zealand.

Team India played a total of 542 test matches and won 157 matches. They have a winning percentage of 28.96%.


 Pakistan got test status of the ICC in 1952, becoming the seventh nation eligible to play Test cricket. The Pakistan cricket team played their first Test match on 16 October 1952 against India in which game they lost by an innings and 70 runs. 

They got their first victory in their second-ever match against India on 23 October 1952. 

They have played a total of 421 matches. Pakistan is the fourth-most successful team in Test cricket with an overall winning percentage of 32.30%.


Sri Lanka became the eighth nation who got test status. They played their first test match on 17th February 1982. They played a total of 289 international test matches and won 92 matches out of 289 test match.


Zimbabwe got test status in 1992. They became the 9th nation to get this. They played a total of 109 international test matches and won 12. And they have a winning percentage of 11.01%.


Bangladesh became the 10th nation to get international test status. They got this on 10th November 2020. So they played their inaugural Test match on 10 November 2000 against India.

Team Bangladesh played a total of 119 international test matches and won 14. They have a winning percentage of 11.76%.


Ireland became the 11th nation to got test status. They played their first match on 11th May 2018 against Pakistan. They played a total of three matches and lost all of them having 0.00% winning percentage.


Afghanistan is the last nation to got international test status. They played their first test match against Indian on 14th June 2018. And they lost their opening game. They played a total of four test matches and won two of them.

Afghan player
Afghanistan player


Break time And Basic Rules:

  • Test cricket is played in whites jersey.
  • It’s a 5-day Match.
  • There are 3 sessions of 2 hours each. 
  • The break between 1st and 2nd session is of 40–45 Minutes and is called as the lunch session.
  • The break between 2nd session and 3rd session is of 15–20 minutes and is called as the Tea session.
  • At the end of the day’s play is called stumps.
  • Umpire dislocate the bails when a session ends.

Win, Lose and Draw Rules:

  • If the team batting first scores some runs, then the team batting second trails their score. If they are successful in trailing then lead starts and if the team who had batted first will trail it first and then set the target. And if they are unsuccessful then it’s an innings defeat.
  • If the team which is trailing gets out when the deficit is more than 200, then the opposition team has an option to let them bat again or bowl.
  • If the team which was trailing and got out with a deficit of more than 200, bats again and gets out before making the required trail runs then also it’s an innings defeat.
  • The match ends in Draw if there is no result through the entire test.

Some Other Important Rules:

  • Each day 90 overs will be bowled. If there is rain or something on any particular day and overs are lost, the very next day play will start half an hour earlier or time will distribute among sessions and 98 overs will be required to be bowled on that day.
  • After a period of 80 overs bowling team has an option to go for a New Ball.
  • Basic Cricket Rules are there.
  • Here 3rd Bouncer is called as No Ball.
  • The ball going down the leg side without touching a Batsman will be called wide if its length is pretty far from the Batsman or touching the wide line. Otherwise, it would be a fair delivery.
  • For off stump line its the same as in ODI.
  • There’s no free hit.
  • Nowadays Both Teams have 2 DRS referrals for each innings while bowling and batting.
  • D/L method is absent here.
  • There is a fine for slow over-rate that is if you don’t bowl the minimum required overs which were required to be bowled on that day.
  • There is a penalty for misbehavior and violation of the code of conduct by a player.


World test championship

ICC introduced a tournament for the entertainment in test cricket in 2020. That is the world test championship. India is the table topper till the date 2nd May 2020. The final match of this tournament will play in Lord’s cricket ground.

Evolution of Test  Cricket

Bilateral Series

The list of bilateral series is given below–

Name of trophyTeam 1Team 2First contestedLatest contested
The Ashes England Australia18822019
Anthony De Mello Trophy India England19512016
Frank Worrell Trophy West Indies Australia19602015
Wisden Trophy West Indies England19632019
Trans – Tasman Trophy New Zealand Australia19852020
Border – Gavaskar Trophy India Australia19962019
Southern Cross Trophy Australia Zimbabwe19992003
Sir Vivian Richards Trophy West Indies South Africa20002016
Clive Lloyd Trophy West Indies Zimbabwe20012017
Basil D’Oliveira Trophy South Africa England20042020
Pataudi Trophy India England20072018
Warne – Muralitharan Trophy Sri Lanka Australia20072016
Freedom Trophy (Gandhi-Mandela Trophy) India South Africa20152020
Sobers – Tissera Trophy West Indies Sri Lanka20152018
Ganguly – Durjoy Trophy India Bangladesh20172020



2New Zealand115
5Sri Lanka91
6South Africa90
8West Indies79

Source:- ( ICC )


1        Steve SmithAUS911
Virat Kohli IND886
Marnus Labuschagne AUS827
Kane Williamson NZ813
Babar Azam PAK800
David Warner AUS793
Cheteshwar Pujara IND766
Joe Root ENG764
Ajinkya Rahane IND726
10 Ben Stokes ENG718
Batsman ranking in test


1Pat CumminsAUS904
Neil Wagner NZ843
Jason Holder WI830
Tim Southee NZ812
Kagiso Rabada SA802
Mitchell Starc AUS796
Jasprit Bumrah IND779
James Anderson ENG775
Trent Boult NZ770
10 Josh Hazlewood AUS769
Bowlers ranking in test


1Jason HolderWI473
Ben Stokes ENG407
Ravindra Jadeja IND397
Mitchell Starc AUS298
Ravichandran Ashwin IND282
Colin de Grandhomme NZ280
Pat Cummins AUS266
Roston Chase WI238
Chris Woakes ENG212
10 Tim Southee NZ211
All-rounders ranking in test cricket

Source:- ( ICC )


In conclusion, team Australia has the best records in terms of Test Cricket. Currently, team India is at the top of the point table of the ICC test championship. Australia team is currently the no.1 ICC test team.


Why do a test match is conducted in white jersey / uniform ?

As it’s a 5 day format and the players have to stay 8 hours a day and back then Test is consider a summer sport. So in that point of view it is wise to use white, because white reflects heat.

Why Test cricket is important?

It is important because it test a player physically and mentally. Which eventually improves the mind set of the player.

Is Test cricket dying?

Yes Test cricket is dying. This is because Test cricket is quite slow as compared to t20 and ODI. And it play for five day, which is also quite boring. So ICC introduced some interesting technique like day-night ( Pink ball ) test match , ICC Test championship to keep the cricket lovers back to the Test format.


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