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10 slowest centuries in Test history by minutes played

A closer look at the match situations that led to 10 of the slowest innings in Test history.

Top 5 / Top 10 12 Mar 2018, 04:37 IST

Whenever anyone hears the word 'slow' innings, they probably believe that it is a euphemism for 'boring' and, while it may be true in some cases when it comes to Test match batting, it is often noticed that in the majority of the innings, it is not. Due to the very nature of the game and the concept of a draw, plenty of batsmen have ended up playing painfully slow innings so that their teams could escape with a draw.

None of those innings seemed boring. However, there are exceptions. So, here is a look at 10 of the slowest innings ever played in Test cricket, measured by minutes spent at the crease and many of those innings had context, which made it necessary for the batsmen to go slow.

#10 Alastair Cook 294 in 773 minutes against India at Birmingham, 2011

England v India: 3rd npower Test - Day Three
Alastair Cook helped England beat India in that Test

The English opening batsman started his career at a time when the game was swamped with openers like Justing Langer, Herschelle Gibbs, Matthew Hayden and Virender Sehwag, who had redefined the role of an opener.

However, Alastair Cook was a throwback to the days of the classical opener, who believed in crease occupation, measured stroke-making and patient batting over flamboyance.

As a result, it is not really a surprise that he scripted one of the longest innings in Test history when he batted for 773 minutes against India in the 3rd Test of the series back in 2011. He started batting towards the end of the 1st day and ended towards the end of 3rd. Cook faced 545 deliveries and hit 33 boundaries in his innings, as England romped to an innings and 242 runs victory. 

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