ISLAMABAD - On this day in 2004, Brian Lara smashed 400 not out against England in St John's to set the record for the highest individual score in a Test innings. In the process, Lara also became the first batsman to reclaim the record of the highest individual score as he snatched that record away from Matthew Hayden.
Hayden's 380 against Zimbabwe in 2003 helped him surpass Lara's world record of 375 which was also scored against England at the same venue of his 400, exactly 10 years ago in 1994.
In the 2004 four-match series, the home team West Indies were already 3-0 down and hosts were staring at a whitewash. It was then that Lara, the skipper, decided to take the matters in his own hands.
On a batting-friendly pitch, the southpaw won the toss and decided to bat first. Chris Gayle gave West Indies a breezy start but he fell at the stroke of lunch and what followed the dismissal was a batting lesson.
Lara began cautiously as bowlers started to tire out on the flat pitch. By the end of Day 1 he had made 86 not out, by the end of the second day he was on 313. On Day 3, it was in the 202nd over that Lara hit Gareth Batty for a single to bring up his 400. The left-handed batsman batted for two minutes shy of 13 hours for the record. He faced 582 deliveries and hit 43 fours and four sixes.
West Indies declared their innings at 751/7. In reply, England crumbled against spinner Pedro Collin's four-wicket haul that helped Windies to enforce the follow-on, however, there wasn't much time left in the match for Lara's team to press for a win.