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Top 10: Highest Batting Average as Opener in Test (Min. 30 Innings)

If you ask someone who has the highest batting average in Test cricket, Don Bradman’s name will come straight away. The great batter signed off his career with an astounding average of 99.94.

But do you know which opening batter has the best batting average in the longer format? Well, if you don’t know, then read on.

The role of an opener in Tests is tough, provided they have to face the new ball, gauge the playing conditions, and give a solid start. A few openers embraced their roles to perfection, putting in consistent performances with the bat.

So, here are the top 10 openers with the highest batting average in Test cricket (min. 30 innings).

Highest Batting Average as Opener in Test

PlayerInningsRunsAverage as Opener
Herbert Sutcliffe (ENG)83452261.10
Bruce Mitchell (SA)48239056.90
Leonard Hutton (ENG)131672156.47
Jack Hobbs (ENG)97513056.37
Bob Simpson (AUS)70366455.51
Bill Ponsford (AUS)31151754.17
Usman Khawaja (AUS)59281054.03
Dennis Amiss (ENG)69327653.70
Bill Woodfull (AUS)44203650.90
Matthew Hayden (AUS)184862550.73

Key Insights

61.10: Herbert Sutcliffe, who batted in 83 of his 84 innings as an opener, retired from Test cricket with an astounding average of 61.10. This is the highest batting average among the openers who have played a minimum of 30 innings in the Test format. Moreover, he is the only batter with a 60+ average while opening the innings.

50: There are over 14 opening batters who have a 50-plus average in the red-ball format. Among the 14 batters, 6 are from Australia, 4 are from England, 3 are from India, and 1 is from South Africa. Apart from the 10 batters above, Rohit Sharma, Simon Katich, Sunil Gavaskar, and Virender Sehwag are the 4 other openers.

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44.86: England’s former skipper, Alastair Cook, amassed the most runs as an opener in Tests — 11845 runs. However, he averaged close to 45 (44.86), which is good for an opening batter. Sunil Gavaskar comes in second with 9607 runs at an impeccable average of 50.29.

86: Cook boasts the most 50+ scores as an opener, with 86 such knocks in his kitty, which include 31 hundreds and 55 fifties. But it’s Sunil Gavaskar who scored the most centuries (33) while opening the innings in Tests.

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