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Stats: Chronicling the fastest batsmen to complete 4000 runs in ODIs

Ram Kumar
1.91K   //    16 Jun 2017, 21:13 IST
Viv Richards
Sir Viv Richards held the record for as many as 28 years

During the 80s and 90s, ODIs were considered an abridged form of Test cricket. However, as T20Is came into the picture, the 50-over format has undergone plenty of drastic changes. Especially, in the batting department, the game has moved on from calculated accumulation of runs to uninhibited stroke-play.

To a certain extent, the benchmark for standardising the quality of batting can be discerned from observing the fastest to reach multiples of 1000 runs. For the 4000-run mark, South African maestro Hashim Amla heads the list by a comfortable margin.

The elegant right-hander took just 81 innings to complete 4000 runs and consequently broke Sir Viv Richards’ longstanding record in ODIs. He accomplished the milestone during the Durban encounter in the 2013 bilateral series against India.

Richards had taken only 88 innings to reach the 4000-run mark. Rather fascinatingly, he needed 10 years to get to the milestone. In sharp contrast, Amla needed just five years to accumulate the aforementioned number of runs. The disparity in time span highlights the increase in the average number of ODIs from the 70s and 80s to the present era. 

Extra Cover: Stats – Chronicling the fastest batsmen to complete 3000 runs in ODIs

Virat Kohli, who recently became the quickest batsman to reach the 8000-run mark, comes in at third in this particular list. The Indian icon took only 18 innings to bridge the gap between 3000 and 4000 ODI runs. Similarly to him, Australia’s attacking opener David Warner also completed the latter milestone in 93 innings.

The only aspect connecting Gordon Greenidge and Kane Williamson is the fact that both batsmen needed 96 innings to get to the landmark. In terms of their approach to batting, the swashbuckling Bajan and the technically compact Kiwi were as different as chalk and cheese. 

Having dominated the ODI circuit in 90s, Brian Lara required around 100 innings to join the 4000-run club. Unlike the indifferent end to his 50-over career, the stylish left-hander was a force to reckon with during the initial part of his journey.

While trend-setting Australian batsman Dean Jones achieved the landmark in his 102nd ODI innings, Faf du Plessis needed 104 innings. Upon reaching the milestone in 105 innings, Sourav Ganguly and AB de Villiers complete the list.


Among the modern-day generation, wicket-keeper batsman Quinton de Kock can etch his name among the fastest batsmen to reach the 4000-run mark. He currently has 3519 runs from 85 ODI innings at an average of 43.44.

Fastest to 4000 ODI runs

BatsmanTeamMatchesInnings TakenDebutYear of RecordOppositionVenue
Hashim AmlaSouth Africa848120082013IndiaDurban
Sir Viv RichardsWest Indies968819751985New ZealandAlbion
Virat KohliIndia969320082013EnglandRanchi
David WarnerAustralia959320092017BangladeshThe Oval
Gordon GreenidgeWest Indies979619751988EnglandLeeds
Kane WilliamsonNew Zealand1029620102016BangladeshChristchurch
Brian LaraWest Indies10110019901996New ZealandPort of Spain
Dean JonesAustralia10410219841990New ZealandMelbourne
Faf du PlessisSouth Africa10810420112017EnglandLeeds
Sourav GangulyIndia11010519921999Sri LankaColombo
AB de VilliersSouth Africa10910520052010PakistanDubai

(*Note: All Statistics are accurate as of 16th June 2017)