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Top 10: Most Runs Scored in a Single Over in Test Cricket

Test cricket is the real cricket, they say. Bowlers dominance, we hear those perfect lines and lengths, sheer bounce and pace. Oh, phew, fortunately, we aren’t going to talk about that here. Instead, we would be focusing on the other aspect of cricket.

Yes, here in this article, we will see some of the really good batting expertise shown by the batsman and even bowlers (shocked ! not after reading the whole article).

Following are the Top 10: Most Runs Scored in a Single Over in Test cricket :

#10 Hardik Pandya – 26 runs

  • Bowler: Malinda Pushpakumara (Sri Lanka)
  • Over – 4, 4, 6, 6, 6, 0
  • Venue – Pallekele
  • Year – 2017

Starting, we have dashing all-rounder Hardik Pandya. Playing his debut series in Sri Lanka, he made his debut hundred with one of the overs, the 116th over of India’s innings, to be precise. He smashed M Pushpakumara for 26 runs in a single over, which consisted of two consecutive fours topped up with three successive sixes. Mind you, this was the then most runs scored by an Indian in any over in Test format.

#9 Brendon McCullum – 26 runs

  • Bowler: Suranga Lakmal (Sri Lanka)
  • Over – 4, 6, 6, 0, 4, 6
  • Venue – Christchurch
  • Year – 2014

Now we have Brendon McCullum, Baz whom they call fondly has always been a destructive batsman no brainer to see him being a part of this list. Against Suranga Lakmal, he went berserk, he smashed a four followed by two successive maximums, then a dot ball, and he went again to hit a six and four.

#8 Mitchell Johnson – 26 runs

  • Bowler: Paul Harris (South Africa)
  • Over – 4, 4, 6, 0, 6, 6
  • Venue – Johannesburg
  • Year – 2009

This guy has more sixes than Virat Kohli in Test cricket. If you guessed him to be a batsman or a batting all-rounder? You’re mistaken. It is Mitchell Johnson. 12-13 years back, he made this record against South African bowler Harris in their own den, hitting 2 boundaries and 4 maximums.

#7 Brian Lara – 26 runs

  • Bowler: Danish Kaneria (Pakistan)
  • Over – 4, 0, 6, 6, 6, 4
  • Venue – Multan
  • Year – 2006

Brian Lara is to come now. This West Indies legend had always been a great Test batsman and the fear creator in the bowlers’ minds. Against Pakistan in 2006, he hit two fours and three sixes in an over.

#6 Craig McMillan – 26 runs

  • Bowler: Younis Khan (Pakistan)
  • Over – 4, 4, 4, 4, 6, 4
  • Venue – Hamilton
  • Year – 2001

The first time 25+ runs scored was recorded in an over was two decades back. Craig McMillan, against Pakistan pacer Younis Khan who later turned out to be one of the greatest Pakistan batters in Hamilton, smashed four consecutive boundaries topping it up with a six and a four to take his tally to 26 runs in that over. He became the ‘then’ record bearer with the most runs in an over in Test cricket.

#5 Shahid Afridi – 27 runs

  • Bowler: Harbhajan Singh (India)
  • Over – 6, 6, 6, 6, 2, 1
  • Venue – Lahore
  • Year – 2005-2006

Old times when India used to travel to Pakistan and have those exciting Indo-Pak matches in bilateral series. Shahid Afridi was the wrecker-in-chief in this case. He showcased yet another exploit by blowing the first four deliveries of Harbhajan Singh for consecutive sixes and then ran a double and single to take the over’s run tally to 27.

#4 Keshav Maharaj – 28 runs

  • Bowler: Joe Root (England)
  • Over – 4, 4, 4, 6, 6, 4B
  • Venue – Elizabeth
  • Year – 2019-2020

Now up comes a really fun combination of batsman and bowler at 4th place on this list. We have Keshav Maharaj as the batsman hitting runs for fun against the English batting superstar, Joseph Root. It was an absurd batter-bowler combo, of course. Still, such is the beauty of cricket, where the players with opposite specializations are in others’ boots. So here, not too long ago in the 2019/2020 season, Keshav smacked Root for three consecutive fours, followed by two sixes and a leg-bye boundary to end the over with 28 runs. The over equated the ‘then’ most numbers of runs scored ever in an over of Test cricket.

#3 George Bailey – 28 runs

  • Bowler: James Anderson (England)
  • Over – 4, 6, 2, 4 , 6, 6,
  • Venue – Perth
  • Year – 2013-2014

Next, we have a not-so-commonly seen thing where James Anderson was hit for many runs. It was the match of England against Australia where George Bailey hit James for an over consisting of 3 sixes, a pair of fours, and a double to take the over tally to 28 runs.

#2 Brian Lara – 28 runs

  • Bowler: Robin Peterson (South Africa)
  • Over – 4, 6, 6, 4, 4, 4
  • Venue – Johannesburg
  • Year – 2003-2004
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Up next, we have to head back to a long time back and introduce the West Indies batting great Brian Lara again to the list. It was against South Africa; he created havoc and hit RJ Peterson’s over for 28 runs consisting of 4 fours and a couple of sixes. Here’s a detailed article on Lara’s fantastic backlift shot.

#1 Jasprit Bumrah – 35 runs

  • Bowler: Stuart Broad (England )
  • Over – 4, 4, NB6, 4, 4, 6, 1
  • Venue – Pallekele
  • Year – 2017

We reached the end of this great list, haven’t we? We have Jasprit Bumrah, the batsman. Yes, you have read it correctly here. The batsman Bumrah smacked Stuart Broad for 35 runs in a single over last year in 2022 in the match against England in Edgbaston. It was the 84th over of the innings where he created a record in cricket history by hitting 29 runs off bat other six runs coming as extras.

Read Now: The Story behind Bumrah’s Unorthodox Bowling

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