Kane Williamson becomes fastest batter in history to smash 32 Test tons breaks Steve Smith’s dual record

In an outstanding display of batting prowess, former New Zealand Test captain Kane Williamson has etched his name in the annals of cricket history by hitting his 32nd century in the Test format on Friday, February 16, against South Africa. Williamson’s monumental achievement not only elevated him to the ranks of legendary cricketers like Steve Waugh and Steve Smith but also heralded a landmark victory for his team. His vital contribution cemented a 7-wicket win in the second Test against the Proteas, ensuring a series sweep with a 2-0 lead.

As the cricketing world watched in awe, Williamson clinched the title of the fastest Test batter to reach 32 centuries, surpassing the previous record set by Australian great Steve Smith. Smith had achieved his last hundred during the Ashes in July, overtaking Ricky Ponting to become the swiftest at the time. Williamson’s triumph is not confined to the scope of Test cricket alone; his overall batting record across all formats now boasts an impressive tally of 45 centuries, outdoing Smith’s current count of 44.

The significance of Williamson’s century stretches beyond the breaking of records. His fifth century in the fourth innings of a Test match has tied him with the prolific Younis Khan for the most tons scored in the final innings. This exclusive club also includes cricket luminaries such as Sunil Gavaskar and Ricky Ponting, among others, all of whom have distinguished themselves with four centuries in the ultimate innings of a Test.

The journey to 32 Test centuries, as measured in innings, now stands redefined with Williamson at the pinnacle with 172 innings, followed closely by Steve Smith’s 174, Ricky Ponting’s 176, Sachin Tendulkar at 179, and Younis Khan with 193.

In terms of hundreds scored specifically in the fourth innings of Tests, the leaderboard is graced by Williamson and Younis Khan, each with five centuries, the former amassing this number in merely 26 innings as opposed to Khan’s 40. Chasing this feat are players such as Gavaskar, Sarwan, Graeme Smith, and Ponting just to name a few.

Williamson’s epochal innings not only spotlighted his individual brilliance but also signified New Zealand’s first-ever Test series triumph over South Africa. It is a watershed moment in their cricket history, a 92-year wait finally coming to an end. The New Zealand squad exhibited a level of dominance that overshadowed the experience-deficit South African team. Although the visitors showcased a determined effort in the second Test, the Kiwis’ stellar performance was unbeatable. This extraordinary series victory has also helped New Zealand to leapfrog in the World Test Championship points table, with their percentage points rising to a commendable 75.

Williamson’s achievement is not merely about breaking records but transcending them. His tenacity and elegance at the crease have once again proven him as one of the modern giants of the game. With the bat in hand, he has rewritten what many considered the apex of batting milestones, setting a new benchmark for the generations to come. New Zealand cricket can revel in the glory of their triumph and the feats of a captain who led from the front, both with skill and incomparable poise. Williamson’s legacy continues to grow, and with each swing of his bat, it seems that records are not just broken—they are redefined.

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