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Who are the best ODI cricket batsmen of all time?
There are a lot of icons in cricket, but only a select few found their way to the top hierarchy in the ODI format. Fans have seen the greatness of top cricket batsmen lead their teams to the glory of every league they play. Know more about them here.
Perhaps when it comes to scoring, no one can match the performance of the best batsmen in the ODI format. While Tests are harder due to the length of playing time, ODI matches are also a huge task since players have to score big numbers in a day.
ODI is one of the toughest formats to play in. Aside from having shorter playing time, players have to battle in just 50 overs in the span of nine hours. The amount of time needed to devise a strategy is hard for many players and coaches, and the short playing time holds them back from maximising their rosters as well.
This is the reason a lot of scorers shine bright in the ODI stage. Batsmen have to carry the big load for their teams and score as soon as they can. They don’t have time to try and get their going, they have to fire away or they will lose the game in a snap.
Here are some of the best ODI cricket batsmen of all time:
Sachin Tendulkar is arguably the best ODI batsman of all time. The former Indian captain had a lot of success and he proved that he can keep on setting the bar for the Men in Blue back in the day. He is known as one of the best batsmen in all formats, and there is no doubt that he shocked the world with his high-volume batting in ODIs.
The Little Master is the first and only player to score a total of 100 international centuries in the history of the sport. Sachin is also regarded as the first batsman to knock a double century in the ODI format and holds the record for the most runs in both Test and ODI cricket.
Sachin has tallied more than 30,000 runs at the international level, making him one of the elite scorers in the Men in Blue’s roster. In 2013, the Master Blaster was named to the all-time Test World XI in the 150th anniversary of the Wisden Cricketers' Almanack.
As a prolific run scorer in cricket, Sachin is a role model to a lot of players. Holding the record for the highest ODI score by batsman clearly sets him apart from the rest. Sachin played 463 matches in the format and has scored a total of 18,426 runs.
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Sir Vivian Richards
Sir Vivian Richards is known for his flexible plays and positioning in cricket. The star has been a bright icon over the years and fans loved him so much for his scoring antics. The Antiguan legend has played for the West Indies at Test and other international levels.
Fans know him as a strong batsman whose spot always brought a lot of runs to his team in key games. He was a dominant batsman at no. 3, going in behind Gordon Greenidge and Desmond Haynes. That formidable lineup was the golden age of the Windies, and their success was unmatched that time.
Viv Richards scored 4,000 Test runs and averaged 62 which is a huge feat for a star that is playing at the no. 3 spot. He brought the same performance in the ODI format. The star played in a total of 187 ODI games and tallied 6,721 runs at an average of 47 per match. This made him an icon for the team back then.
The Antiguan star was knighted for his success in ODI cricket, and he sits among the top players in the ODI ranking batsman list. This is his huge legacy that saw a lot of success over the years before he was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2009.
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Virat Kohli is one of the best active players in cricket. The star is always regarded as a powerful batsman whose big games led India to success and cemented his spot as one of the best cricket batsmen in the world. The Indian star has evolved into a menace in the batting order, and this makes him so special in the Men in Blue’s lineup.
As the captain of the Indian team in the Test and ODI format, Kohli proved that he can keep on winning in his games over the years, and this makes him an icon among many players. He serves as an inspiration to many rising talents who want to leave their mark in the sport.
Kohli made his debut in the Test format in 2011. When he entered the ODI format, the Indian skipper proved to be a powerful hitter as he became the no. 1 ODI batsman in 2013. He holds the record for being the fastest player to reach a tally of 23,000 runs at the international level which is one of the highest ODI score by batsman.
In 254 ODI matches, Kohli has scored a total of 12,169 runs in the format with an average of 59.07 per match. The star scored 183 runs at most in the format, which proves how iconic he is in scoring ODI runs.
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Ricky Ponting is one of the top legends for Australia thanks to his strong batting play. The star led the Aussies in their golden era from 2004 to 2011 which were the years when the team thrived in both Test and ODI games. Ponting’s lead was praised by a lot of fans and analysts all over the world which made him a popular figure in all formats.
Ponting is the most successful captain in the history of cricket as he tallied 220 wins in 324 matches. That is a winning rate of 67.91% and he also has a lot of time for his personal feats. He was one of the best batsmen in the modern era and stands second in the list among players with the most international centuries next to Tendulkar.
As an efficient batsman, Ponting leads Australia in most runs scored in the Test and ODI format. He was even named as the Cricketer of the Decade 2000 for his success in the sport. He was named to the nation’s best Ashes XI in 2017 before he was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2018.
In 375 ODI matches, Ponting has amassed a total of 13,704 runs in his career. He has an average of 42.04 and has brought his batting prowess to help Australia as its coach in all formats. This makes Ponting a key legend for the team and the ODI format alone.
Brian Lara is one of the best stars known for his strong ability to score runs. The Trinidadian star is one of the greatest of all time thanks to his batting skills and he was regarded as a trend-setter in the sport with his prowess in clutch games.
Lara was named as the winner for the Wisden Leading Cricketer in the World in 1994 and 1995. He is also one of the only three cricket stars to earn the BBC Overseas Sports Personality of the Year along with Sir Garfield Sobers and Shane Warne.
The legend played a total of 299 ODI matches in his career. In that span, he has amassed 10,405 runs with an average of 40.48 per game. His success as a reliable batsman in the ODI format made him a reliable icon at that time since the West Indies had a downfall in their roster.
Lara’s success over the years proved that West Indies also has a knack for winning games in the ODI format. The star showed that he can play in multiple positions as well and this is one of the unique talents that a player can have. Lara’s legacy was all about his big career wins that made him a key icon in both the West Indies squad and in the ODI format.
These top scorers in the ODI format have all been a menace on their own, and this is why they are the legends of the game. They set the bar for many players to follow, and no one can deny the fact that their success shows how great they are even in playing a difficult format.
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Words: Paul Daniel Flores