Sachin Tendulkar has 45 ODI centuries batting as an opener, and Virat Kohli stands with 38 ODI centuries to date batting at No.3. These are the top two for the most ODI centuries in a batting position.
If you look at the distribution of Virat Kohli’s ODI centuries by batting position, 38 of his 46 have come at No.3, the position which he owns himself for many years now.
Sachin added 9 ODI centuries to his name in 1998 (easily the best year of his career) alone. Most of that has come while batting as an opener. He scored 3 more in the Tests in the same year. Not surprisingly, the God of Cricket also holds the record for the most runs as an opener in ODI – one of the many records that Sachin will keep forever.
Now, let’s find out who tops the century counts for each batting position in ODI.
|OPENER||Sachin Tendulkar - 45||Sanath Jayasuriya - 28||Rohit Sharma - 28||Hashim Amla - 27||Chris Gayle - 25|
|No. 3||Virat Kohli - 40||Ricky Ponting - 29||Babar Azam - 19||Kumar Sangakkara - 18||Jacques Kallis - 13|
|No. 4||Ross Taylor - 19||AB de Villiers - 15||Aravinda de Silva - 10||Mahela Jayawardene - 9||Mushfiqur Rahim - 8|
|No. 5||Yuvraj Singh - 7||AB de Villiers - 6||Eoin Morgan - 5||Shakib Al Hasan - 5||Sikandar Raza - 5|
|No. 6||Jos Buttler - 4||Chris Cairns - 2||Kedar Jadhav - 2||David Miller - 2||Kieron Pollard - 2|
|No. 7||Michael Bracewell - 2|| MS Dhoni - 2||Abdur Razzaq - 1||Moeen Ali - 1||Asif Khan - 1|
|No. 8||Mehidy Hasan Miraz - 1||Simi Singh - 1||-||-||-|
Simi Singh (Ireland) and Mehidy Hasan Miraz are the only batsmen to score a centuries while batting as a tail-ender, that is, at positions No.8, 9, 10, & 11. On the other hand, Sam Curran and Chris Woakes of England came so close to score a century as No. 8s, during different scenarios where they stayed unbeaten at 95.
Jos Buttler, with 4 centuries at No. 6, leads the list at that batting position. Five other batsmen scored 2 ODI centuries playing at the same spot. They are:
- Kedar Jadhav (IND)
- Chris Cairns (NZ)
- David Miller (SA)
- Kieron Pollard (WI)
- Shahid Afridi (PAK)
- Umar Akmal (PAK)
MS Dhoni and Michael Bracewell are the only batsmen to have more than one century batting at or lower than No. 7. 18 other batsmen have scored a century at No. 7. The list is as follows:
- Abdul Razzaq (PAK)
- Sikandar Raza (ZIM)
- Glenn Maxwell (AUS)
- Moeen Ali (ENG)
- Jos Buttler (ENG)
- James Faulkner (AUS)
- Mohd Kaif (IND)
- Justin Kemp (SA)
- Marcus Stoinis (AUS)
- Najibullah Zadran (AFG)
- Matthew Wade (AUS)
- Hashan Tillakaratne (SL)
- Thomas Odoyo (KEN)
- Yusuf Pathan (IND)
- Luke Ronchi (NZ)
- Ricardo Powell (WI)
- Thisara Perera (SL)
- Shaun Pollock (SA)
Among the current batsmen, Eoin Morgan and Shakib Al Hasan have 5 ODI centuries each, batting at No. 5. Both these batsmen have got equal chance to replace Yuvraj Singh in the top position with 7 hundreds in this position. Ben Stokes, another current English cricketer, has 3 ODI tons in the same position.
The fab-4 members, Joe Root and Kane Williamson, have got 11 centuries each batting at One down, the spot which Virat Kohli owns to his name with his spectacular numbers. Babar Azam, with 14 centuries playing at No. 3, is also climbing up the list. ‘Will Babar match Virat’s numbers?‘ is the biggest of all the questions in the world of cricket.
Rohit Sharma is the only contender at least near Sachin’s numbers in the opener’s slot. Rohit scored 5 centuries in the last ODI World Cup tournament – the best in the tournament history. However, he will need more of that form to reach what the master has achieved as an Opener. Currently, with 27 centuries playing as an opener, he has got a significant number to chase down.
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