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Double Centuries scored in the 4th innings of a Test

#4. Gordon Greenidge – 214* vs England, 1984

Gordon Greenidge
Gordon Greenidge made a mockery of the English bowling attack during his sensational double century at the Lord’s.

Sir Gordon Greenidge announced his arrival with a spectacular century at the Chinnaswamy stadium in 1974 and in the years to come, he went on to become one of the game’s greatest of all time. But if there’s one knock of his that the Windies fans look back at very fondly, it is his spectacular 214 at the Lord’s, where he led by example to help his side chase a 342-run target.

Graeme Flower’s century helped the hosts gain a crucial 41-run lead in the first innings. Allan Lamb’s terrific hundred in the second innings set a 342-run target for the visitors, which seemed out of the Caribbean reach at that point. But Greenidge made a mockery of the English bowlers in the company of Larry Gomes. He batted aggressively and the likes of Derek Pringle and Sir Ian Botham were left clueless, conceding runs at over 5 an over.

The onslaught was so terrific, the only wicket in the innings (Desmond Haynes) came through a run-out. Greenidge’s splendid use of his wrists to master the flicks and cuts, were a crucial feature of the innings. He got to his double century with a hook that went over the deep fielder at fine leg, and became the 9th double-centurion at the Home of Cricket and his team chased the target in just 78 overs.

#5. Nathan Astle – 222 vs England, 2002

Nathan Astle
Nathan Astle got to his double century in just 153 deliveries.

Seldom we come across a knock as feisty and breathtaking Nathan Astle’s double century in Christchurch, which is to date the fastest double century ever registered. England were in complete command of the game, having set a mammoth 550-run target courtesy Graham Thorpe’s heroic double-ton in the second innings, which came at a strike-rate of 86.58. Just when people thought that knock was as ferocious as it gets, Astle accounted for something immortal on the fourth day.

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He walked in to bat at 119/3 and wasted no time in settling himself. There were some lofted drives and nasty slogs in the process, all of which brought a huge smile to the faces of the Kiwi supporters. He got to his fifty in 54 deliveries and reached three figures in 114 deliveries. English bowlers had already picked up six wickets, so Astle began upping the ante. The carnage that followed, despite England winning the game, was unforgettable.

Astle pulled and hooked to perfection that day, picking the gaps off Flintoff’s bowling with ease. Up until he had 122 runs to his name, he had scored just two sixes but before the innings finished, he managed to hit 11 out of the park. He added 118 runs for the final wicket with Chris Cairns in just 55 minutes, before getting dismissed for a magnificent 222 off 168 balls. New Zealand lost the game, but had registered the second-highest team score in the 4th innings of a Test (451).

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