10 Active batsmen with highest career ODI averages
In Test or ODI cricket, different yardsticks are used to gauge the pedigree of a top order batsman. Statisticians are kept busy all through the cricketing season for working out averages, strike rates, centuries and conversion ratios to decipher who is the best among the rest. Of all the statistical parameters, the average for a very long time has been used as a standard benchmark to measure the consistency of a batsman at scoring runs. Average may not be the best measure but is certainly a fair yardstick to indicate how productive a batsman has been over a period of time.
Over the years, an ODI average of over 40 was considered the cut off for being considered a great batsman. All great ODI batsmen of yesteryears like Sir Viv Richards, Sachin Tendulkar, Brian Lara, Ricky Ponting, Jacques Kallis and Kumara Sangakarra ended up with an impressive 40 plus batting average in their respective ODI careers. With the pitches getting flattered and batting friendly, the 40 mark has inched toward the 45 mark.
In the last decade or so, we have seen some batting maestros like Virat Kohli, AB De Villiers and Hashim Amla taking batting to another level and scoring runs with superlative consistency. It doesn’t come as a surprise that some batting stalwarts boast of ODI averages of over 50.
So let us have a look at who are the top ten active batsmen with the highest average in ODIs. For my selection, i have only considered those batsmen who are actively playing ODI cricket for their respective nations. I have only considered those batsmen who have at least scored 1000 ODI runs.
Before we run through the top 10 list, a look at the active batsmen who average more than 40 in ODIs.
Australia - David Warner 43.43, Steven Smith 41.84
India - Rohit Sharma 44.98
South Africa - Faf Du Plessis 44.40
New Zealand - Martin Guptill 42.99
Sri Lanka - Angelo Matthews 42.73
England - Jos Butler 40.35
(Min Run Qualification - 1000 runs)
Note - AB De Villiers with a career ODI average of 53.5 misses out as he retired from international cricket in February 2018
Just Missed the Cut
Rohit Sharma is arguably one of the most destructive openers in ODI cricket. The ‘Hitman’ has built a reputation of sorts as a slayer of bowling attacks in white ball cricket. Blessed with enormous talent, Rohit has one shots too many to make the best attacks look ordinary. His penchant to score massive double tons and win games for India is no hidden secret.
Rohit has strung a lethal opening pair with fellow opener Shikhar Dhawan and provided the much required initial thrust for the Indian ODI team. Rohit has been supremely consistent with his run-scoring as an opener and has handsomely contributed to India becoming a potent force in ODI cricket.
Rohit Sharma ODI Record
Matches 183 Runs 6748 Avg 44.98 100s 18 50s 34