Birthday Special: Mark Boucher – Top 3 performances in international cricket

The former South African cricketer Mark Boucher is regarded as one of the best wicketkeepers of all time and holds some of the biggest wicketkeeping records. He made his international debut in October 1997 against Pakistan and played his last game in 2012 against New Zealand. Boucher scored over 10000 runs in international cricket with the help of five Test and one ODI century.

Boucher holds the world record for the highest 999 dismissals by wicketkeeper across formats, including the most dismissals in Test cricket. He also tops the chart for the most catches taken by a wicketkeeper in international cricket and holds a unique world record for playing the most T20 innings without a career duck.

He was appointed a head coach for South Africa’s men’s national team in 2019 and joined Mumbai Indians, the most successful franchise in the Indian Premier League, as head coach for the 2023 edition. Let’s take a look at his top three performances in international cricket.

1) 147* vs Zimbabwe, 2006

Mark Boucher made his ODI debut in 1998 but he scored his first and only ODI hundred in 2006. He smashed an unbeaten 147 runs off just 68 balls with the help of eight fours and ten sixes to help South Africa score 418 runs against Zimbabwe in the third ODI at Potchefstroom. Boucher reached the 100-run mark in just 44 balls to register a second-fastest ODI hundred for South Africa.

2) 125 vs Zimbabwe, 1999

Boucher scored 125 runs against Zimbabwe in a Test match at Harare in 1999, his highest score in Test cricket. This was the highest score by a nightwatchman till Australia’s Jason Gillespie scored 201* in 2006. This knock helped South Africa to win the match by innings and 219 runs, Zimbabwe’s biggest Test defeat back then.

3) 122* vs West Indies, 2004

Boucher’s 122* knock against West Indies in the third Test match at Cape Town in 2004 will be in fans memories for years because it came while playing in number eight position. South Africa were struggling at 315/7 and then Boucher smashed 122 runs off just 173 balls to help the Proteas score 532 runs in the first innings.