On This Day: Kev James' New World Record

Kev James takes four wickets in four balls - including Tendulkar and Dravid - before commencing an innings which culminated in a century against India on this day in 1996

Hampshire Cricket's historian Dave Allen takes a look back on timely memorable moments in his ‘On This Day’ series.

Kev James (5-74 & 103) - Hampshire v India, 29th June 1996

In the immediate post-war decades in particular, counties that had little prospect of winning the Championship saw the tourist match as a vital earner and they would field strong sides and hope to do well – especially against the Australians.

By the end of the century however, with three or four chances of a trophy, touring sides would find counties who often rested senior players. So it was that when Hampshire met the Indians in 1996, Robin Smith, Connor and Maru were omitted from the previous Championship match and the early attack of Milburn, Bovill and Thursfield  - collectively 0-224 in 51 overs - made no impact.

The score reached 192-0 when the senior paceman Kevan James turned everything around and set off on a new World Record. First he took the wicket of Jadeja (caught Keech 91) at 192, then - with the score on 207 - he took a ‘hat-trick’: Rathour stumped Aymes 95, Tendulkar caught Laney 0, and Dravid lbw 0. If that was not enough, next ball Manjrekar went, caught Terry 0 – four in four – and the fifth ball was not far from a catch either.

The Indians recovered and declared on 362-5 (James 5-74) and the day’s hero was batting that night after nightwatchman Bovill failed to survive. James started day two on 2* and he and Laney (100) took the overnight total from 49-2 to 220-3 with Kevan James adding 103 to his four-in-four, at the time a unique world record, although since equalled in 2015/16 by KR Smuts playing in South Africa for Eastern Province v Boland at Paarl.

There was less than an hour’s play on day three and the match was drawn with Hampshire 458-9.

Match Scorecard

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