With Gerrie Snyman recently scoring the tenth highest List A individual innings by scoring 196 for Namibia against the UAE, unluckily finishing on the losing side, let's take a look at some previous towering batting performances below the Test level.
271 for GS Patterson's XI v AM Wood's XI
21st-22nd August 1894 at Belmont Cricket Club, Philadelphia
With Bart King being the top pre-World War One American cricketer with the ball, Patterson was his equal with the bat. His best performance came when captaining (unsurprisingly) GS Patterson's XI against AM Wood's XI. Wood was a former Derbyshire player who had settled in the USA, and there were two former Nottinghamshire players in his side. Before anyone goes thinking that this was some poor American bowling attack that Patterson hit his runs off, let's point out that four of the ten bowlers used had first-class bowling averages under 30, one of whom had an average of 13.79.
Patterson's innings started on the first day of the two-day first-class match, and he batted for the remainder of the match, Wood's team not even starting their first innings. He was 120 not out at the close of the first day, on which he had been outscored by Edward Clark, who scored 147 before he was stumped. He continued batting throughout the second day, eventually finishing on 271. 113 years later, this is still the highest first-class score by a player from one of the current non-test nations.
234 for Argentina v Chile
4th-6th January 1930 at Belgrano Athletic Club, Buenos Aires
Whilst South American cricket was going down in standards by this time, it was still good enough to send a combined South America side to England in 1932, playing first-class matches, and Argentina retained first-class status until the war. Dennet Ayling, whilst a useful batsman, was primarily known as a bowler, taking 79 wickets in his 16 first-class matches at an average of 16.43.
Playing against a Chilean side featuring former Somerset player John Jackson (who was born in Chile), Argentina batted first, with Ayling opening the batting. He went on to score 234 from Argentina's total of 612 for 6, which also featured centuries from Robert Stuart and John Knox. He also took three wickets in each Chilean innings, the second of which matched his individual score. Argentina won the match by an innings and 65 runs, with John Jackson scoring a century in each of Chile's innings.
218 for Federated Malay States v Straits Settlements
5th-7th August 1933 at Penang Cricket Club
The annual matches between the Federated Malay States and Straits Settlements continue to this day in the form of the Saudara Cup between Malaysia and Singapore, and back in the 1930s, many first-class players took part in the fixture, with two playing for the Straits Settlements in this match, and the Malay States even included Lall Singh, who had played in India's first Test the previous year.
Singh scored 84 in this match, putting on 214 for the third wicket with Cyril Reed, who had played first-class cricket in India, who eventually went onto score 218 out of the total of 393, the highest score in the history of the fixture, including the modern-day Saudara Cup. He was dismissed for just 24 in the second innings, but had played a major part in his team's seven wicket victory.
200 for Germany v Switzerland
21st August 1997 at Zuoz
The 1997 European Nations Cup in Switzerland was a tournament that produced one of Wisden's top 100 matches of the 20th Century when France's David Bordes ran the winning leg-bye in the final against Germany with a fractured skull, but a big score for Germany against the hosts was the highlight of the group stage.
Batting first, Germany racked up a huge 467/1 from their 50 overs. Shamussudin Khan scored an unbeaten 200, putting on 349 for the second wicket with Abdul Salam Bhatti (174 not out), who is still playing for Germany. Khan however, despite being the top run scorer in this tournament, doesn't seem to have played for Germany before or since. Germany won the match by 280 runs.
247 for Kenya v Pakistan A
5th-6th August 2004 at Sir Ali Muslim Club Ground, Nairobi
After the 2003 World Cup in which they reached the semi-final, Kenya were sorely neglected by the ICC, and instead of playing regular ODIs against Test playing opponents as part of a build up to Test status, they were left with the occasional match against an A side, includin this four-day game against Pakistan A in August 2004.
Shah had showed some form in the first match of the series by hitting 124 to take himself past 1,000 first-class runs, but the finest moment of his career came in this match, when he scored 247, almost half of Kenya's total of 502. The second highest score was Steve Tikolo's 80. With Shah so obviously being more than capable in first-class cricket (he has a batting average of just under 50) he has not played for Kenya in the Intercontinental Cup since the semi-final against Scotland in 2004.
213 for UAE v Brunei
14th August 2006 at Kinrara Academy Oval, Kuala Lumpur
The 2006 ACC Trophy was a tournament of big scores and huge mismatches, none more so than Nepal's win over Myanmar when they bowled their opponents out for just ten. Brunei were on their side of some big scores, conceding 499 against Saudi Arabia later in the tournament, and 459 in this match against the UAE.
The UAE's captain in this match, Arshad Ali, was the dominant player in the innings, batting throughout, scoring 213 from 146 balls. He finished the tournament with a batting average of 153.66, and a bowling average of 16.11, unsurprisingly winning the man of the tournament award.
247 not out for Bermuda v Netherlands
23rd-24th November 2006 at LC de Villiers Oval, Pretoria
David Hemp was born in Bermuda, but left the island at the age of five, eventually having a successful county cricket career with Warwickshire and Glamorgan, also representing England A. When he announced his attention to play for Bermuda, many were cynical, claiming that Hemp was just after one more shot at a World Cup after failing to gain senior England honours. But Hemp filled his residential criteria to allow him to play for Bermuda before the World Cup, and went to South Africa with them in late 2006, where the Netherlands were playing their "home" Intercontinental Cup games.
Coming in on the third day of the match with Bermuda on 154/3, after Ryan ten Doeschate had scored 138 in the Dutch first innings, Hemp had scored 143 by the close of play, and went on to score 247 when the Bermuda innings came to an end at 620. Saleem Mukuddem and Dwayne Leverock, better known as bowlers, admirably stayed with him, scoring 90 and 51 respectively, as he built the record Intercontinental Cup score in a match that finished in a draw. However, he didn't keep the record for long …
Ryan ten Doeschate
259 not out for Netherlands v Canada
5th-6th December 2006 at Sinovich Park, Sinoville, Pretoria
David Hemp did not have long to savour his record innings, as less than two weeks later, Dutch player Ryan ten Doeschate broke it. He had already scored a century in each innings when Hemp set his record, and had started this match with a fine bowling performance, taking 6/20 as the Canadians were bowled out for 103 in their first innings inside 37 overs.
He didn't get much time to rest after his bowling spell, as the first Dutch wicket fell in the third over with the score on eight. He batted for the rest of the day, reaching 135 at the close, and continued batting the next day, eventually reaching 259 when the Dutch innings came to an end with a total of 409. The second highest score was 49. This made ten Doeschate only the ninth player to score a double century and take six wickets in an innings in the same first-class match, and his performance helped the Dutch pick up a 7 wicket win.
As we have seen, players from the non-test countries are occasionally capable of some huge scores. And the fact that half this list come from matches played within the last few years shows that they are getting more frequent. Eoin Morgan and Steve Tikolo also scored double centuries in the 2006/07 Intercontinental Cup.
But will anyone beat Patterson's first-class record, which is one of the longest standing records in cricket, set one year before Archie MacLaren's English first-class record of 424? It's hard to say. With the recent problems with teams often being forced to field weakened sides in Intercontinental Cup matches, if one of those weakend teams comes up against an agressive batsman such as Ryan ten Doeschate or Gerrie Snyman, or a classy batsman such as David Hemp when in top form, the record could go. Ten Doeschate would certainly have broken it had his teammates stayed with him.