Top 5 best openers in the history of T20 cricket
The role of the opening batsman in Test cricket is different from that in limited overs cricket. The limited overs openers are expected to give their respective teams a flying start, with field restrictions to assist their case at the start. T20 cricket also does not give time for the batsmen to settle down. In T20, it is expected that the batsmen start hitting from the first ball and keep on finding the boundaries.
The openers by so doing play a vital role in shaping the innings of T20 cricket. They play the first six crucial power-play overs, so the way they play sets a tone for the rest of the innings.
The responsibility is on them to set a platform for their team, either with aggressive stroke-making or by digging in and hitting a big score. All successful T20 teams in the world have world-class openers, and we have seen IPL franchises paying heavily for quality openers in the IPL auction.
T20 cricket has produced some exceptional openers over the years. Let's take a look at all-time best openers of T20 cricket:
#1 Virender Sehwag (India)
Virender Sehwag is one of the most destructive openers in any format of the game. He has constructed an extraordinary career with a relentless quest, and a genius, for boundary hitting. With minimal footwork, but maximum intent, Sehwag can be regarded as one of the best openers of T20 cricket.
The most remarkable aspect of Sehwag's career, of course has been his ability to build massive scores at breathtaking speed. In 104 IPL matches, Sehwag had a decent average of 27.56 runs, firing at a strike-rate of above 155.
He did not play much international T20 cricket with only 19 games to his name. In the 19 games, he managed to strike the ball at a strike-rate of above 145.
The ability to understand the condition of play has made Sehwag was one of the most valuable assets of any T20 team.