Duck, duck, lose: the numbers behind England’s latest batting collapse

England’s latest batting collapse in Australia follows on from a series of below average scores from the men’s Test team in the past year. Statistics show the top order fairs poorly compared with other countries, and well adrift of their six main rivals.

Here we take a look at the stats which highlight how poor England’s batters have been since Joe Root was named Test captain in February 2017.


Root has averaged 47.66 since being named captain. England’s other top six batters have averaged 30.32.

Average of international men’s Test top six since February 2017


The total number of ducks by England batters in 2021 is 50. The next highest figure this century is 33. In total, 17.2% of England innings in 2021 have ended without scoring. There has only ever been one other year with more than 33 England ducks: 1998, when there were 54 (17.1% of all innings).


Average runs scored by England batters in 2021.


Previous years this century when England have averaged less than 25 runs per wicket. Over the last hundred years it happened in 1999, 1950 and 1922 (when there was only one Test).

Most recent years in which England men have averaged less than 25 runs per wicket in Test cricket


Total number of Test batters over the last 10 years with a batting average above 40


Total number of England batters over the last 10 years with a batting average above 40 (Root and Cook). There are 11 from each of Australia and Pakistan, 10 Indians, eight Bangladeshis, seven from New Zealand and South Africa, six Sri Lankans and five from the West Indies.

England men’s best Test batting averages since 2012

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