On this day in 2004: Brian Lara makes record Test score of 400 not out

By Sports Desk April 12, 2024

On this day 20 years ago, Brian Lara regained the individual Test score world record on his way to an unbeaten 400 against England in the fourth Test in Antigua.

Ten years after hitting 375 to claim the world record for an individual innings against England at the same venue, Lara exceeded that effort by becoming the first player in history to score 400.

By doing so, he became the first player to hold the individual Test innings record twice.

Lara reclaimed his record from Australian Matthew Hayden, who only six months earlier had broken the record with 380 in Perth in October 2003.

Lara’s mammoth innings steered the West Indies to a total of 751 for five before declaring and reflecting on his achievement, he said: “When I scored it before I didn’t know what to expect – this time it was very tiring, but I’m here again.

“Matthew Hayden must have batted very well against Zimbabwe because it doesn’t matter who you are playing against, it’s very hard.

“It’s a great feeling, but it’s dampened by the series result. Ten years ago the match ended in a draw, but this time we’re looking for a result.”

Upon achieving the record, Lara was greeted in the middle by Baldwin Spencer, the Prime Minister of Antigua, while England captain Michael Vaughan hailed Lara as “one of the all-time great players”.

“We all set out to achieve greatness, but he is a gifted, gifted player – throughout his innings we tested him with a few things but he was much better than us for those two days,” Vaughan said.

“He is one of the all-time great players, he has achieved something that has never been achieved before even with the amount of pressure he had on him before the start of this Test.

“He will go down as one of the greats of the game and it will take some player and some performance to beat his 400.”

Mahela Jayawardene went close with 374 for Sri Lanka against South Africa two years later but Lara remains first and third on the list two decades on.

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