All-time African ODI XI
With their seemingly endless supply of world-class players, South Africa are one of the top teams in international cricket history. During the late 90s and early 2000s, Zimbabwe were a force to be reckoned with. Against all odds, Kenya sprung a major surprise by entering into the semi-final of the 2003 World Cup. The prospect of a combined ODI XI from these three countries to represent the continent of Africa becomes a lip-smacking one.
Also Read: All-time Asia ODI XI
Admittedly, the dream team should be overshadowed by the array of stars produced by South Africa. However, Zimbabwe have contributed a few great players of their own. Without comprising on quality and factoring in the necessity to facilitate proportional representation from the three countries, an all-time Africa XI has been assembled to challenge any opponent in ODIs.
Hashim Amla is one of the very few batsmen in the history of ODIs to average above 50 after a sizeable number of matches. Initially pigeon-holed as a Test specialist, the classy right-hander has come a long way and established himself as a reliable opener for the Proteas. While his track record in ICC events may not be sparkling, the right-hander's irrepressible consistency makes him an automatic pick for one of the two slots at the top of the order.
With his solid technique and unflappable temperament, Gary Kirsten was a constant presence for South Africa at the top of the order. Considering the fact that he played the vast majority of his career on bowling-friendly pitches against world-class fast bowlers, the left-hander pips his more flamboyant former opening partner Herschelle Gibbs as well as the resolute Graeme Smith to join hands with Amla in this lineup.
Openers: Hashim Amla (South Africa) and Gary Kirsten (South Africa)