Top 10: Highest Individual ODI Scores against Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka has been one of the more prominent ODI sides in the last decade or so. Despite a slow start where they didn’t win that many games, the island nation picked up pace after winning their maiden ICC Cricket World Cup in 1996 when no one expected them to. This started an upward trend where Sri Lanka, despite being a small nation, produced some of the big names in cricket.

The former champions have had some of the great pacers, all-rounders, and spinners in their ranks over the years, and they have done wonders for their side. Yet there are batters who have fancied playing against this opposition, making hay on their given day. In this article, we will see some of the best knocks ever played by batters while facing the competitive Sri Lankan bowling attack.

Here are the top 10 highest individual scores by batters against Sri Lanka.

Highest Individual ODI Scores against Sri Lanka

PlayerRuns (Balls)4s/6sVenueDate
Rohit Sharma (IND)264 (173)33/9Kolkata13 Nov 2014
Faf Du Plessis (SA)185 (141)16/3Cape Town7 February 2017
MS Dhoni (IND)183* (145)15/10Jaipur31 Oct 2005
Sourav Ganguly (IND)183 (158)17/7Taunton26 May 1999
Vivian Richards (WI)181 (125)16/7Karachi13 Oct 1987
Luke Ronchi (NZ)170* (99)14/9Dunedin23 Jan 2015
Brian Lara (WI)169 (129)15/4Sharjah16 Oct 1995
Virat Kohli (IND)166* (110)13/8Thiruvananthapuram15 Jan 2023
David Warner (AUS)163 (157)13/2Brisbane4 Mar 2012
Jason Roy(ENG)162 (118)13/3The Oval29 Jun 2016

Key insights from the above stats

4: Number of Indian players who make it to the list, namely MS Dhoni, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, and Sourav Ganguly. They are followed by the West Indies, where 2 legendary yesteryear batters, Sir Vivian Richards and Brian Charles Lara, find a place in the list of the top-10 highest individual scorers against Sri Lanka in ODI cricket.

2: The number of scores of 200 or more scored against Sri Lanka in the ODI format, both of which were scored by the Indian opener Rohit Sharma. These 2 knocks came at home and in the winning cause.

18: There have been 18 scores of 150 or more against Sri Lanka in the 50-over format by 16 different batters over the years. Only Rohit Sharma and Gautam Gambhir have breached the mark twice.

264: The highest ever ODI score by a batter in the history of ODI cricket, and it came from the bat of the current Indian skipper Rohit Sharma, who played this sensational knock at the Mecca of Indian cricket, Eden Gardens.

Batting first, India posted a huge 404/5 on the board thanks to the efforts of the Indian opener who got a reprieve in the early part of the innings and went on to make the Sri Lankans pay for that costly. Rohit brought up the 2nd ODI double century of his career and made it the first ever 250-plus score (264) in the format. This remains the top score in ODIs and no other batter has come close to that.

185: The highest score against Sri Lanka by a batter not named Rohit Sharma is in the name of the former South African skipper Faf Du Plessis who scored his career-best ODI score of 185 at the Newlands in 2017. This stupendous knock coming in just 141 deliveries enabled South Africa to run away with the game as they posted a daunting 367 runs on the board and this resulted in a 40-run victory for them.

171.71: The strike rate of Luke Ronchi when he hit that incredible unbeaten 170 against the visiting Sri Lankan team at the University Oval in Dunedin. He came in at No.7 and smashed a sensational knock in just 99 balls that included 9 sixes.

Along with Grant Elliot who made 104*, he helped New Zealand pile up 360/5 from being at 93/5 at one stage. His 170 remains the highest ever ODI score coming at the No.7 position or lower.

103.82: On the contrary, David Warner has the 2nd lowest strike rate for the batters who have scored 150 or more against Sri Lanka in ODIs. Warner took 157 balls to make 163 at the Gabba.

He may not have played with the usual flair in terms of the scoring rate but his knock helped the home team pile up 321 on the eventual day and helped them defeat Sri Lanka by a close margin of 15 runs. The batter with the lowest strike when he has scored 150 or more is Gautam Gambhir whose one of the two 150 scores came at a strike rate of 102.

2: Two players have scored exactly 183 in an ODI innings against Sri Lanka and both are former Indian skippers, MS Dhoni and Sourav Ganguly, both of whom have led the side in World Cups.

Sourav Ganguly was the first batsman to make this score and it came in an ICC World Cup Group game in 1999 at Taunton. On a typical overcast day in England, India was inserted into batting first and it proved to be a wrong decision on the part of Sri Lanka.

Despite losing Ramesh early, Ganguly through his eye-catching stroke play in a partnership with Rahul Dravid (145) piled up misery on the Lankan side. The duo added a mammoth 318-run stand for the 2nd wicket and helped India score 373, giving them a comfortable win.

The other 183 was by MS Dhoni and it came in a chase at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur in 2005. Once again promoted up the order, the former Indian captain made his only 150-plus score in ODIs and it came in a successful run-chase for India. The hosts were set a target of 299 to win and with the help of Dhoni’s 145-ball knock, India reached the target with 4 overs to spare.

Also Read | Top 10: Highest Score by a Wicketkeeper in ODI

181: Before Ganguly made his famous 183 at Taunton, Vivian Richards held the record for the highest score against Sri Lanka in a World Cup fixture. It came in a 1987 Group game at Karachi where Richards led from the front to amass a stunning 181 from just 125 deliveries. This included a staggering 7 sixes as the Windies put a massive 360 runs on the board which was one of the huge totals in ODIs at that time.

169: The other West Indies player on this list, Brian Lara scored his career-best ODI innings tally of 169 at Sharjah way back in 1995. This knock came in just 129 balls helping his team post a massive 333 on the board. In the end, it proved to be just about enough as the Sri Lankan team fought back very well to score 329 in their response.

166: Virat Kohli’s favourite opposition in ODI cricket is Sri Lanka as he has scored 10 of his 46 ODI tons against the Lankan bowlers. However, he hadn’t made any scores of 150 plus in any of the first 9 centuries he scored against them.

This changed at the beginning of 2023 when Sri Lanka toured India once again and Kohli registered his 2nd-best score of 166* in the 3rd ODI game of the tour. His stunning 110-ball knock included 8 maximums as India finished just 10 runs short of the 400-run mark and Sri Lanka couldn’t score half of what Kohli did as they got bowled out for a mere 73.

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