India’s greatest ODI XI of all time

India had played 999 One-Day Internationals (ODIs) and won 518 of them before the series opener against the West Indies. The Men in Blue had suffered 431 defeats, with nine matches ending in ties and 41 games ending in a draw.

Indian cricket has seen a number of remarkable players and performances throughout its 1000 ODIs. Here is the all-time best India ODI XI.

●   Sachin Tendulkar 

Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar is one of the best white-ball cricketers of all time, and his dominance in one-day internationals is unrivalled.

The Mumbai right-handed batsman, who began his India career as a 16-year-old, finished his illustrious career with the most matches, runs, and centuries.

Tendulkar’s performances made him the face of cricket in India and around the world. It was only fitting that Tendulkar became the first player to hammer a double tonne in ODIs, given he was one of the players who revolutionised the batting strategy as an opener in the limited-overs format.

●   Virender Sehwag 

With his stroke-play, he can quickly steal the game away from his opponents. His 219 against the West Indies in 2011 is still the third-best individual score in one-day international history. With his deft off-breaks, Sehwag can even turn a contest. With all of these skills, he could be an excellent fit for this role.

With the help of 15 100s and 38 50s, Sehwag scored 8273 runs with a strike rate of 104.34 and an average of 35.06 in 251 ODI appearances for his country. He’s also got 96 wickets under his belt.

●   Sourav Ganguly 

The left-hander was moved to third base from his usual opening spot, but he had success there as well, scoring 1,476 runs at a 52.71 average. The former captain dubbed the ‘God of the Offside’ for his effortless stroke-play. His remarkable hand-eye coordination makes him India’s only left-handed batsman to achieve over 10,000 ODI runs, with Yuvraj Singh second on the list with 8,609 runs.

From the beginning of 1998 to the beginning of 2000, he was at the top of his career, scoring 4,674 runs with 15 hundreds, including seven in 2000 alone.

●   Virat Kohli 

Virat Kohli, probably the best limited-overs batter in history, has destroyed several major records and continues to do so.

The Delhi right-handed batsman has already established himself as one of the best run-chasers in history.

Kohli is the best batter at No. 3 not only in India but also in the globe, thanks to his ability to score runs under duress and a high conversion rate.

●   Yuvraj Singh & MS Dhoni 

Perhaps the easiest group to choose from because, well, they all effectively choose themselves. For a time, the Dhoni-Yuvraj combination was the most enticing batting combination on the planet. They walked into hopeless circumstances and sculpted victory for the Indian cricket team out of thin air. They were also the forerunners of the aggressive mindset that the team presently employs so they won’t feel out of place in today’s ODI environment.

Dhoni and Yuvraj, on the other hand, had a habit of rising to the occasion. Dhoni’s knock at the Wankhede Stadium is legendary, whilst Yuvraj was crucial throughout the tournament (as an all-rounder), quietly winning the Player of the Series award in the process.

●   Kapil Dev 

Kapil Dev, one of the greatest all-rounders of all time, captained the Indian team that won the World Cup in 1983, defeating Clive Lloyd’s West Indies for the third time.

Kapil made a significant contribution with both the bat and the ball throughout his long ODI career. His historic 175 against Zimbabwe at Turnbridge Wells during the 1983 World Cup is still regarded as one of the best ODI knocks in history.

●   Anil Kumble 

The tall Karnataka off-spinner was a superstar not just in Test cricket but also in white-ball cricket.

When his captains needed wickets, Kumble was their go-to man. Kumble was unafraid of the opponents or the pitches he played, and he was always looking to take wickets.

●   Zaheer Khan 

While Agarkar retired after nine years with 288 wickets in 191 games, Khan elected to play longer, which is why he is in the all-time XI.

Zaheer got 269 wickets in 194 games throughout his 12 years as an ODI bowler for India. With 21 wickets, he was one of the key contributors in ensuring India won the 2011 World Cup. His strike rate of 35.8 and average of 29.43 are among the finest in the nation.

●   Jasprit Bumrah 

In a short period of time, the incredibly gifted right-handed bowler from Gujarat has established himself as a superstar. Bumrah may have only played 70 ODIs, but his impact with the ball ushered in a new era in Indian speed bowling.

His unique action and ability to unleash toe-crushing yorkers at will made him one of the most feared bowlers in the game. After Kapil Dev, Bumrah became India’s second fast-bowling celebrity thanks to his propensity to bowl miserly in the death overs.

●   Javagal Srinath

Srinath is India’s lone quick bowler and one of just 13 bowlers in the world with over 300 ODI wickets. His bowling strike rate of 37.8 remained extraordinary, demonstrating how the squad could always count on him to make crucial breakthroughs.

Srinath was at his best while facing the greatest in the world, averaging 23.68 against England, 20.41 against New Zealand, and 27.74 against the West Indies.

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