5 shortest Test matches in the last 10 years

Australia v South Africa - First Test: Day 2
Australia v South Africa - First Test: Day 2

Traditional cricket fans believe that Test cricket is the most difficult format that has ever existed or will ever exist.The emergence of T20 cricket tends to challenge that notion, with more white-ball games coming up, but nothing beats the thrill of Test cricket.

Be it fighting hard to force a result or grinding it out to save a Test match, the long toil of five days where the pendulum swings back and forth, there's something about Test matches that keeps the players and the fans engaged throughout.

The long and hard toil isn't always for five days, though. Sometimes, the five-day red ball event wraps up in a matter of a couple of days, as it did in the recent first Test match between Australia and South Africa at Brisbane.

On that note, let's take a look at five of the shortest Test matches in the last decade, including this one.

#1 Australia vs South Africa, Brisbane, 2022

The anticipation around this series was at an all-time high with two top-quality bowling lineups going head-to-head.

However, one team stood head and shoulders above the rest in the first of three Test matches, on a spicy pitch in Brisbane that proved to be too much for the batters.

After being put to bat first, South Africa were bundled out for 152 on day one. Australia didn't fare much better, being bowled out for 218, thanks largely to Travis Head's 92.

That marginal lead was enough for the hosts to put on the squeeze, dismissing South Africa cheaply once more for a total of 99.

Chasing a measly target of 34 in the final innings on day two, Australia stumbled to the finish line with the score reading 35/4, giving the hosts a one-nil series lead to finish the game in two days.

#2 India vs England, Motera, 2021

Back-to-back five-wicket hauls for Axar Patel ๐Ÿ–๏ธChepauk: 5/60Motera: 5/37*๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ - 105/9#OneFamily #MumbaiIndians #INDvENG

In the 3rd Test match between India and England, the visitors won the toss and opted to bat first. However, the decision quickly backfired as they scored only 112 runs from 48.4 overs on a raging turner of a pitch.

Axar Patel and Ravichandran Ashwin led the way for India, recording figures of 6/38 and 3/26, respectively. The hosts didn't do much better with the bat either, scoring 145 after 53.2 overs, with Joe Root recording his best figures of 5/8.

India responded strongly once more, though, with Axar and Ashwin leading the way with figures of 5/32 and 4/48.

England were bowled out for 81 in the third innings, giving India a 10-wicket win as they comfortably chased down a target of 49. Only 139.4 overs were bowled in the match, which finished in a couple of days.

#3 India vs Bangladesh, Kolkata, 2019

India Vs Bangladesh | 2nd Test at Eden Gardens, Kolkata: @imVkohli completes his century

India faced Bangladesh in their first-ever pink ball Test match at Eden Gardens.

The Day-Night Test was hosted as a proper event that lasted for a total of three days. Opting to bat first, Bangladesh quickly regretted that decision as they were bundled out for 106 in 30.3 overs.

Ishant Sharma's fifer set the tone for the home side before Virat Kohli's sensational knock of 136 led India to a total of 347/9, which is when they declared. With a significant lead, Bangladesh were under the pump and could never bounce back.

They were 13/4 at one stage in the fourth innings before eventually being all out for 195. India won the match by an innings and 46 runs with a complete performance from the side.

#4 India vs Afghanistan, Bangalore, 2018

India vs Afghanistan one off Test match.๐Ÿ“… June 14, 2018๐Ÿ“บ @StarSportsIndia ๐Ÿ”ข ๐Ÿ“ฑbcci.tvโฒ๏ธ 9.30 AM IST#INDvAFG

Afghanistan played their first-ever Test match against India at the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore in 2018.

After winning the toss and opting to bat first, the hosts scored 474 from 104.5 overs, with Shikhar Dhawan and Murali Vijay scoring centuries, along with half-centuries from KL Rahul and Hardik Pandya.

In reply, Afghanistan were bowled out for 109 in 27.5 overs, with Ravichandran Ashwin taking 4/27 in the first innings.

Ajinkya Rahane, the Indian captain, enforced a follow-on, which proved to be the right call. Afghanistan could barely muster a better total, having bundled in for 103 in 38.4 overs.

Ravindra Jadeja led the way for India with the ball, with figures of 4/17 in the first innings. The hosts won the match by an innings and 262 runs. There were 172.2 overs in the entire game, which finished in a couple of days.

#5 South Africa vs Zimbabwe, Port Elizabeth, 2017

South Africa have knocked Zimbabwe over for 68 with the pink ball. Morkel claiming 5-21: #SAvZIM

In this day-night Test match at Port Elizabeth, South Africa dictated terms from start to finish. The hosts opted to bat first, scoring 309/9 after 78.3 overs before declaring their innings. Aiden Markram led the way with his century, with AB de Villiers also contributing with a fifty.

In reply, Zimbabwe were all out for 68 in the first innings within 30.1 overs as Morne ripped through them to notch up figures of 5/21.

Enforcing the follow-on, the hosts dismissed Zimbabwe for 121 in 42.3 overs, with Keshav Maharaj bagging a fifer to give his side a memorable win.

Only 907 balls were bowled in this match, which was wrapped up in five sessions. South Africa registered their win by an innings and 120 runs.

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Edited by Yasho Amonkar
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