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5 international players who have played for more than 20 teams

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Chris Gayle has truly been a remarkable freelance cricketer 
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Roy Suvra

There have been a lot of players who have played cricket for several years, representing a club, a state or a country. However, with so many different leagues and divisions and a whole lot of cricket being played throughout the year, it’s not impossible to think that some of the cricketers may have turned out for more than one team.

However what is amazing is the insane record of those players who have been members of several cricket teams throughout their career. It takes a lot of skill and determination to adapt to different forms of the game in different countries and playing in different cultures, but some players have managed to overcome such hurdles and have added different teams to their career experience, which definitely says a lot about their endurance and love for the game.

Here’s taking a pick of 5 players who have plied their trade for at least 20 different teams.

#1 Shahid Afridi

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Shahid Afridi has had a cricketing career that has lasted for almost two decades

One of the most colourful and entertaining figures of the cricketing world, Shahid Afridi has been around long enough to have added innumerable teams to his resume. With his flamboyant character and being the inspiration behind hordes of internet memes and trolls, Afridi has quite a parallel image as the Zlatan of Cricket. Afridi has recently played for the Sylhet Super Stars in the 2015 Bangladesh Premier League and has also joined his country’s first major T20 league.

Having announced retirement and returned back to the game a number of times, Afridi, through the years, has represented the Deccan Chargers, Dhaka Gladiators, Hampshire, Karachi Dolphins, Karachi Region Blues, Kent, Melbourne Renegades, Northamptonshire, Pakistan, Pakistan A, Pakistanis, Peshawar Zalmi, Ruhuna Royals, Sind, South Australia, St Kitts and Nevis Patriots, Sylhet Super Stars and many other teams.

He is one of the few players who, at times in his career, has hogged the no.3 position as a pinch-hitter. Since 1997 Afridi has also turned out for Habib Bank Limited, and in his career, has played domestic cricket for teams of Leicestershire, Derbyshire and even Grigualand West.

His highest score of 164 in first class cricket came while playing for Leicestershire. Afridi continues to hold numerous cricket records but the colourful Lala has also been a part of numerous controversies throughout his life including being banned for deliberately damaging the pitch.

#2 Tillakaratne Dilshan

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Tillakaratne Dilshan invented the shot that we now know as the ‘Dil-scoop’

Tillakaratne Dilshan, the pioneer of the ‘dilscoop’ is known for his innovative shotmaking and for being the first Sri Lankan to score 1,500 runs in T20 internationals. His earliest association with cricket began while playing for the KalutaraTown Club in 1996-98 and Singha Sports Club in 1997-98 and continued when he joined Sebastianites C&AC for a two-year duration of 1998-2000.

He is also the first player to hit 200 fours in T20Is, but these statistics are understandable on the reflection that he has played the shortest format for 18 separate teams - Basnahira, Basnahira Cricket Dundee, Basnahira South, Bloomfield Cricket and Athletic Club, Chittagong Vikings, Delhi Daredevils, Derbyshire, Dhaka Gladiators, Guyana Amazon Warriors, Hambantota Troopers, Northern Districts, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Ruhuna Reds, Sri Lanka, Sri Lankans, Surrey, Sydney Thunder, Tamil Union Cricket and Athletic Club.

The former Sri Lankan captain has scored the highest number of ODI runs by any batsman after the age of 35 - he has scored 4391 ODI runs scored after 35 years of age, and retains the record for the highest individual score by a Sri Lankan in a World Cup – 161* against Bangladesh in 2015.

#3 Brad Hodge

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Brad Hodge plays for the Adelaide Strikers

Australia’s Bradley John Hodge though has never been a star for the national team, remains a legend in domestic cricket, with records for the most runs (5,597) and most centuries (20) in Australian interstate one-day matches.

He also became the first batsman to score a century in Australian domestic Twenty20 competition and has since amassed several records having played for a large number of teams, such as the Adelaide Strikers, Auckland, Australia, Australia A, Barisal Burners, Basnahira Cricket Dundee, Guyana Amazon Warriors, Kochi Tuskers Kerala, Kolkata Knight Riders, Lancashire, Leicestershire, Melbourne Renegades, Melbourne Stars, Northern Districts, Peshawar Zalmi, Rajasthan Royals, St Kitts and Nevis Patriots, Victoria, and Wellington.

His debut T20 match was for the Victorian Bushrangers and he even played for Ramsbottom in 2000 and 2001, breaking the clubs’ batting record. The veteran cricketer has also played county cricket for Durham. Hodge even signed for the Sylhet Superstars the BPL team captained by Shahid Afridi. Despite his enviable domestic records and a Test average of 55.88, Brad Hodge will, unfortunately, go down as one of the unluckiest men in Australian cricket.

#4 Dirk Nannes

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Dirk Nannes of Australia bowls during the ICC World Twenty20 2010

Dirk Peter Nannes is quite an interesting cricketing figure. Having played for both Australia and the Netherlands, Nannes has become one of the few players to who have represented multiple international teams.

Before taking up cricket as a career, Nannes had been a freestyle skier and since then has played across nine different countries representing diverse teams from different parts of the globe including Australia, Basnahira Cricket Dundee, Canterbury, Chennai Super Kings, Delhi Daredevils, Lions, Melbourne Renegades, Middlesex, Mountaineers, Netherlands, Nottinghamshire, Otago, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Somerset, Surrey, Sydney Thunder, Sylhet Royals, Victoria.

In his early cricket career, he played for teams like Hawthorn Waverly and later Fitzroy Doncaster. Like Brag Hodge, Nannes too has been a member of the Victorian Bushrangers and has gained the reputation for being a true fast bowler, bowling at around 150km/hr. While playing in the Sheffield Shield he was once banned for two consecutive beamers, and both his domestic and international careers have been plagued by injuries.

In spite of his admirable worth as a fast bowler, due to his inconsistency and the injuries, he did not have a successful career with either of the national teams. Victoria and Delhi Daredevils coach Greg Shipperd when asked about Dirk's non-selection for the Australian Twenty20 team, had said that "I would have thought he would be the first pick", thus expressing the widely held views of Nannes as an asset to the team.

5. Chris Gayle

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West Indies cricket star, Chris Gayle

Christopher Henry Gayle is synonymous with the image of modern cricket’s bad boy. However, the towering West Indian, who is often at odds with the West Indies Cricket Board, has made the country proud on numerous occasions and has broken into several records lists. One of his rather amazing records includes having played for at least 22 different teams.

The prolific player’s career started at the Lucas Cricket Club in Kingston and he has gone on record saying,“If it was not for Lucas I don't know where I would be today. Maybe on the streets." Besides playing T20 cricket for numerous clubs – the Barisal Bulls, Barisal Burners, Dhaka Gladiators, Jamaica, Jamaica Tallawahs, Kolkata Knight Riders, Lahore Qalandars, Lions, Matabeleland Tuskers, Melbourne Renegades, PCA Masters XI, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Somerset, Stanford Superstars, Sydney Thunder, West Indians, West Indies, Western Australia – Gayle has even played domestic cricket for Worcestershie (2005) and the Highveld Lions (2014).

He was also selected for team Uva Next - for the inaugural Sri Lanka Premier League in 2012.He also has the distinction of being the only player in world cricket to hit a triple hundred in Tests, a double hundred in ODIs and a hundred in Twenty20 Internationals. He remains one of the cricketers from the 1990s to be playing even today and consistently performing well at the international level.

Edited by Staff Editor
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