Who was the first man to play 50 Tests?

Peter Parfitt holds the record for the fewest runs made in a Test series after having scored three hundreds in it PA Photos

I noticed that although Allan Lamb made three centuries against West Indies in 1984, he only scored 386 runs in all. Has anyone ever scored three centuries but fewer runs in a single Test series?asked Robert Crichton from England
Rather surprisingly, perhaps, there are three lower series aggregates than Allan Lamb's 386 in 1984 to include three individual centuries. Polly Umrigar made 382 runs in the five Tests of India's 1960-61 home series against Pakistan, while Ian Bell made 375 in four Tests for England at home to Pakistan in 2006. But leading the way (if that's the right phrase) is England's Peter Parfitt: in the five-Test home series against Pakistan in 1962, he made 340 runs in five innings, with three centuries. Lamb does lead the way in one respect: he batted ten times in that 5-0 blackwash, and his average of 42.88 is the lowest of anyone who scored three centuries in a Test series. Next comes Michael Slater, with 460 runs at 46.00 in the 1998-99 Ashes; no one else who scored three hundreds in a series averaged under 50.

How many wicketkeepers have scored a century on Test debut, as Tom Blundell did in Wellington? asked Nick Harvey from New Zealand
Tom Blundell's 107 not out for New Zealand against West Indies in Wellington last week gained him admittance to a surprisingly small club: only three previous players have scored a century on Test debut in a match in which they kept wicket. The first was Sri Lanka's Brendon Kuruppu, with a 13-hour unbeaten 201 against New Zealand in Colombo in 1986-87. He was joined by another Sri Lankan, Romesh Kaluwitharana, who scored 132 not out against Australia, also in Colombo, in 1992-93. And Matt Prior hit 126 not out on debut for England, against West Indies at Lord's in 2007.

This excludes Test-debut centurions who kept wicket at some stage in their career but not in their first match, such as Paul Gibb and Billy Griffith of England, and Australia's Wayne Phillips. For the full list of players who have scored a hundred on Test debut, click here.

The highest score in Australia's second innings of 138 in Adelaide was just 20. Have there been any higher totals than this with no one making more than 20? asked Justin Thompson from Australia
That's a good spot, as Australia's 138 in Adelaide last week turns out to be the highest completed innings in which no one passed 20. The previous highest was 134, by Bangladesh against Pakistan in Multan in August 2001, when the best individual score was Mehrab Hossain's 19 (seven of his team-mates made double figures).

There have been 12 other all-out totals of 100 or more which did not feature an individual contribution above 20: 118 by New Zealand against Sri Lanka in Galle in 2012-13 (highest score 20 by Daniel Flynn); 114 by Australia v West Indies in Melbourne in 1988-89 (20 by David Boon and Allan Border); 110 by England v South Africa at Lord's in 1998 (Nasser Hussain 15); 107 by West Indies v Australia in Melbourne in 1930-31 (Ivan Barrow 17); 107 by Pakistan v Australia in Melbourne in 1989-90 (Ijaz Ahmed 19); 106 by Pakistan v West Indies in Bridgetown in 1957-58 (Imtiaz Ahmed 20; in their second innings Pakistan made 657 for 8, with 337 for Hanif Mohammad); 104 by Australia v England in the very first Test of all, in Melbourne in 1876-77 (20 by Tom Horan); 104 by Australia v England at The Oval in 1997 (Ricky Ponting 20); 102 by Zimbabwe v South Africa in Harare in 1999-2000 (Neil Johnson 20); 102 by Bangladesh v South Africa in Dhaka in 2002-03 (Khaled Mahmud 20 not out); 100 by Pakistan v England at Lord's in 1962 (Nasim-ul-Ghani 17); and 100 by India v South Africa in Durban in 1996-97 (Sourav Ganguly 16).

I know that Colin Cowdrey was the first man to play 100 Tests. But who was the first to 50? And 150? asked Derek Harman from England
The first man to complete a half-century of Test appearances was Australia's Syd Gregory, who managed to make eight Test-playing tours of England between 1890 and 1912. Gregory's 50th Test was the fourth one of the 1909 Ashes series, at Old Trafford. At that time another Australian, Monty Noble, was next on the list, with 41.

Colin Cowdrey became the first to 100 caps at Edgbaston in 1968, the third Test of that year's Ashes series. At the time Cowdrey's old Kent and England team-mate Godfrey Evans was in second place, with 91 appearances. The first to 75 had been England's Wally Hammond, in 1939.

The first to 150 was Allan Border, in December 1993; his nearest challenger was Kapil Dev, with 127 caps. The first to play in 125 Tests had been Sunil Gavaskar, in 1986-87. Sachin Tendulkar became the first man - and only one so far - to play 200 Test matches, when he rounded off his stellar career against West Indies in Mumbai in November 2013.

What's the lowest one-day international total to include a half-century? asked Abhay Thatte from India
Before the Sunday ODI in Dharamsala, where MS Dhoni made 65 in India's total of 112*, the lowest all-out total in one-day internationals to include an individual half-century was 115, by Netherlands against West Indies in Delhi in the 2011 World Cup: Tom Cooper top-scored with 55 not out. There are two cases of 117: by Netherlands again, against Scotland in Dublin in 2008 (Eric Szwarczynski made 54; Daan van Bunge with 34 was the only other man in double figures); and by Pakistan against West Indies in St Vincent in April 2000 (Inzamam-ul-Haq 51 not out).

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*December 13, 7:03 GMT: The answer was tweaked to reflect the Dharamsala ODI's record