5 highest averaging player pairs in ODI cricket
In any team sport, partnerships are important and they act as a very important key to success. They build a path for the team’s success.
In cricket, batting partnerships are given utmost importance, especially in limited-overs cricket. You need pairs to take up responsibility, understand each other and take the team forward accordingly. It’s not that bowling partnerships are not important but we generally tend to keep track of batting partnerships.
Sachin Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly, Matthew Hayden and Adam Gilchrist, Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara are first few pairs that come to mind when we talk batting partnerships in ODI cricket.
Hence, let’s look at 5 of the best partnerships in ODI cricket (in terms of average).
Criteria – Minimum 3000 ODI runs as a pair
Note – Pairs ranked based on their average
#5 Tillakaratne Dilshan and Kumar Sangakkara – 53.67
This is the only pair in this list that has batted for more than 100 innings together in ODI cricket. Tillakaratne Dilshan and Kumar Sangakkara played together for over 15 years.
While Sangakkara might have scored more runs alongside Mahela Jayawardene, his best returns came with Dilshan. The Dilshan- Sangakkara duo have batted together in 108 innings and have amassed a staggering 5475 runs at a superb average of 53.67. The stitched together 39 50+ stands. They have 20 hundred partnerships (which includes a couple of double-century stands) which is the second-most in ODI cricket history after Sachin Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly’s 26.
Their best partnership of 210 (not out) came during the 2015 World Cup. Both batsmen struck tons as Sri Lanka piled up 332 in their 50 overs in their group stage game against Bangladesh. Another memorable partnership was 128 against India in Rajkot in 2009 which put Sri Lanka on track in their chase of 414 (in which they fell short by 3 runs).
Hence, with Dilshan opening the batting and Sangakkara coming in at 3, Sri Lanka’s batting was more or less in safe hands. They often built a solid platform for the Sri Lankan middle-order and to do it for over a decade and a half is a special achievement.