New Zealand’s recent 4-run win against was the fifth narrowest margin of victory in Test Cricket. Also, it was the first instance of a 4-run victory in Test Cricket.
If we consider the top five narrowest wins, apart from 4, a margin of 1 and 2 have also occurred only once each in history. Now, the question is which team has featured in the narrowest margins of results most times in Test Cricket.
The below table is an answer to that question. Featuring a total of seven in top 10 of the smallest margins, Australia is the team. While they’ve been the winning team three times, the defeat count is four.
|West Indies||1 run||v Australia||23-Jan-93|
|England||2 runs||v Australia||4-Aug-05|
|Australia||3 runs||v England||24-Jul-02|
|England||3 runs||v Australia||26-Dec-82|
|New Zealand||4 runs||v Pakistan||16-Nov-18|
|South Africa||5 runs||v Australia||2-Jan-94|
|Australia||6 runs||v England||20 Feb 1885|
|Australia||7 runs||v England||28 Aug 1882|
|South Africa||7 runs||v Sri Lanka||30-Jul-00|
|New Zealand||7 runs||v Australia||9-Dec-11|
Australia on the losing end: Four Times
The Australian team has lost to England in a couple of games in the Ashes, the most recent one being the 2nd Test match at Birmingham. It’s still one of the most talked about matches in the Ashes history. Despite Brett Lee and Shane Warne’s brilliance with the ball in the 3rd innings of that match that restricted England to 182, Australia lost to England in the thriller of a game. Brett Lee’s heroics with the bat was negated when Steven Harmison ripped off the No. 11 Michael Kasprowicz with a short ball. A safe landed catch by Geraint Jones meant England was all for celebrations. Brett Lee’s 43 not out off 75 could not bring victory for Australia. The impact of that match is still so much that the replays are capable of giving us the jitters. Lee couldn’t hold back his tears and was on his knee crying. Andrew Flintoff joined him to console him. What could’ve been 2-0 for Australia, turned out to be 1-1 in the Ashes.
|West Indies||1 run||v Australia||Adelaide||23-Jan-93|
|England||2 runs||v Australia||Birmingham||4-Aug-05|
|England||3 runs||v Australia||Melbourne||26-Dec-82|
|South Africa||5 runs||v Australia||Sydney||2-Jan-94|
Australia as the winning side: Three times
|Australia||3 runs||v England||Manchester||24-Jul-1902|
|Australia||6 runs||v England||Sydney||20 Feb 1885|
|Australia||7 runs||v England||The Oval||28 Aug 1882|
The most recent of Australia’s shortest victories, by 3 runs apparently, was way back in the early 20th century. Captain Joe Darling with the aid of the bowling brilliance of Hugh Trumble and Jack Saunders had pulled off a major victory against arch-rivals England. The other two narrow victories date back to th1 9th century, just after the birth of Test Cricket.