In the 3rd Test of New Zealand's 2022 tour of England, Jack Leach took the Wicket of Will Young with his first ball in the 13th over of the match.

Generally in Tests, and especially in England, spin bowlers are normally introduced into the game at a much later time than the 13th over - perhaps an exploratory over just before Lunch - when there are rough patches for them to aim at; so a spinner taking a Wicket this early in a Test Match is somewhat unusual.

What is the earliest time (in terms of balls bowled) has a spinner taken a Wicket in a Test Match?

For clarification, I am talking about the first innings of a Test Match, as I am aware that Ravi Ashwin has taken a Wicket with the very first ball of an innings, though that was in the batting team's second innings, third innings overall.

1 Answer 1


The answer here will be one of the early Test matches played on uncovered wickets - spinners would often open the bowling in those days. We don't have anything like full ball-by-ball records for those matches so it's always going to be speculation to some extent.

As one example here, in the 2nd Test of the 1884 Ashes Tour to England, Percy McDonnell was bowled by Ted Peate, a slow left-armer, in the first innings of the Test without a run on the board.

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