Triplets add to storied sibling history

Dutch brothers first triplets to play professional cricket together, joining some famous twins along the way

Cricket Network

18 July 2017, 03:17 PM

Dutchmen Sikander, Asad and Saqib Zulfiqar made history on Monday as the first triplets to play in the same professional cricket team, when the Netherlands took on the United Arab Emirates in Amstelveen.

The three 20-year-olds, whose father Zulfiqar Ahmed also played for the Netherlands, ended on the losing side, as UAE prevailed by three wickets, though their history-making deed drew more headlines than the result itself.

Debutants Asad and Saqib made 15 and 11 respectively while the more experienced Sikander mde 41 not out from number eight, helping the Dutch to a total of 8-182, which was ultimately chased down by the UAE with six balls remaining in the 50-over contest.

The first for professional cricket had statisticians poring over the record books for instances of twins playing at the elite level together.

We've taken a closer look at five of the more famous pairs.

Alex and Kate Blackwell (Australia)

While Kate played her last match at international level back in 2008, Alex has continued to ply her trade for Australia and the 33-year-old is one of the most respected figures in the women's game. The duo were the first identical twins to play for Australia back in 2004 (Mark and Steve Waugh are fraternal twins) and won a World Cup together in 2005, while they also formed a key part of the NSW batting order between 2002 and 2010 – a period of utter dominance for the Breakers.

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Mark and Steve Waugh (Australia)

The reputation of the Waugh brothers certainly precedes them; through their glittering careers they played 105 Test matches together, while also winning the 1999 World Cup. Between them, they played an astonishing 993 innings at international level, scoring 73 hundreds and 192 fifties. Steve captained Australia through an incredible period of dominance between 1999 and 2004, and his win rate as skipper of 71.92 per cent is comfortably the best in Test history (min 25 matches). Both are regarded as among the finest-ever middle-order batsmen Australia produced.

Quick Single: The Waugh brothers' greatest XI

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Alec and Eric Bedser (England)

Alec (right) with brother Eric in 1953 // Getty
Alec (right) with brother Eric in 1953 // Getty

Sir Alex Bedser played 51 Tests for England in the years following World War Two, earning himself legendary status for his feats as a fast bowler (236 wickets at 24.89). It was at County level that he and Eric – an off-spinner – combined their powers, taking Surrey to seven successive titles. Eric finished with 833 wickets for his county, though Alex makes that figure look almost normal; he managed 1,924.

Hamish and James Marshall (New Zealand)

Hamish Marshall (left) with twin James in 2005 // Getty
Hamish Marshall (left) with twin James in 2005 // Getty

Elizabeth and Rose Signal (New Zealand)

Sisters Elizabeth and Rose Signal were trailblazers for the likes of the Waughs and the Blackwells in that they were the first twins to play in a Test together, doing so at Headingley against England in 1984. Later on the same tour they also became the first twins to play an ODI together also, with both players bringing a similar skill-set to the table as allrounders. Rose only played one Test, while Elizabeth went on to play six.