The 10 greatest international cricketers who played county cricket
English domestic cricket has historically been one of the highest levels of the sport. Despite not being as revered as it once was, there is still no better place for a batsman to hone their craft against swing and seam, or for a bowler to perfect that very art.In days gone by, many of the world’s best cricketers doubled up as county players when they did not have international duties. They formed lasting relationships with their counties, leaving marks that are still remembered fondly by fans to this day. After all, it was quite something when a global superstar would come to play in your humble little town.Here is a list of the 10 great international cricketers who played county cricket.
#1 Sir Vivian Richards
Back when West Indies were at the peak of world cricket, many of their cricketers also got involved with county cricket. Sir Vivian Richards was just one of the show-stoppers who played – the swashbuckling Antiguan represented Somerset from 1974 to 1986 and left an indelible mark on the club’s history.
Despite never winning the ultimate County Championship prize, Somerset excelled in the one-day competitions with Richards on board. The team won the Benson & Hedges Cup in 1981 and 1982, the Gillette Cup in 1979 and 1983, as well as the 40-over Sunday League in 1979. Sir Ian Botham and Joel Garner were also key cogs in Somerset’s golden era.
During a glittering international career, Richards hit 8,540 Test runs at an average of 50.23, and 6,741 one-day international (ODI) runs at exactly 47. He was also a handy bowler, picking up over 500 wickets combined in first-class and List A cricket.