Top 5 International teams with best wicket keepers in ODI history
In cricket’s modern era, wicket keeping is just not confined to the art of glovesmanship behind the stumps but also involves contributing with the willow for winning matches for your team.
In the fast-changing dynamics of ODI cricket, every cricketer has become a multi-utility weapon for their team. Wicket-keepers have been relabelled as 'wicket-keeper batsman' as they don the dual role of an effective keeper and a dependable batsman who chips in with valuable knocks as part of his team’s batting efforts.
So let us look into the top 5 teams who have been blessed with quality wicket-keeper batsmen in one day cricket over the years.
For picking up my top five teams, I took into account certain parameters to fine tune the selection. Consistency in run scoring and longevity in career were two of the major criteria for making the cut as a wicketkeeper-batsman. Only those batsmen who scored at least 1000 runs in min 50 ODIs with a 20 plus average were considered as frontline wicketkeepers for their sides.
England’s Jos Buttler is the most destructive wicket-keeper batsman in ODIs at present. Buttler has proven to be an impact player with his blitzkrieg cameos down the order. Blessed with good hand-eye coordination and sublime timing, Jos can annihilate the best of bowling attacks with sheer disdain. Buttler is quite acrobatic behind the stumps with his tidy glovework.
England also have the luxury of another wicketkeeper-batsman in Jonny Bairstow who has been a surprise package for many as he shed his tag of a Test specialist and became an attacking stroke maker in ODIs.
English cricket was well served by Alec Stewart who was their frontline wicketkeeper-batsman all through the 90s. Besides his safe glovework behind the stumps, Stewart was a dependable batsman who could bat anywhere in the order producing runs consistently for his side.
Over the years, England had the services of Matt Prior and Craig Kieswetter who all served their team well as wicketkeeper batsmen
Jos Buttler: Matches - 109, Runs - 2816, Avg - 38.05
Alec Stewart: Matches - 160, Runs - 4677, Avg - 33.48
Craig Kieswetter: Matches - 46, Runs - 1054, Avg - 30.11