5 Most Successful Opening Pairs In Test Cricket

Irrespective of the format, openers always play the key role in deciding the course of the team. Openers always have a special responsibility on their shoulders, the responsibility to give great starts. If openers would fall cheaply than it would set a bad example for the entire batting order. Hence opening is a such an important task.



Over decades of cricket, the world has seen numerous opening pairs being tried by every team. While some teams found solid opening pairs and were lucky, other teams kept struggling with getting their opening combinations right.

Talking of openers, we bring you the 5 greatest opening pairs of all times in test cricket.

1.Gordon Greenidge and Desmond Haynes

West Indian opening batsmen Gordon Greenidge (left) and Desmond Haynes during the 5th Test match against England at the Kennington Oval in London on the 8th August 1988. The West Indies won the match by 8 wickets. (Photo by David Munden/Popperfoto/Getty Images)

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Opening pairs may come and go but none could ever match what this opening pair achieved. This opening pair was the face of the dominance that West Indies once had in international cricket. Greenidge and Haynes have together opened in 148 innings and the two shared 6482 runs between 1978 and 1991.

2. Matthew Hayden and Justin Langer


They were the pillars of Australian test batting line up from 2001 to 2007. This pair shared 5655 runs between them in just 113 innings. They shared 14 century stands between them and their average as an opening pair was staggering at 51.8 and they are by all means one of the greatest test opening pairs ever.

3. Alastair Cook and Andrew Strauss


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This pair has opened for England between 2006 to 2012 and they have added 4771 runs together. They really enjoyed batting besides each other and this shows in the average of 40.96 between the two. Their highest partnership was that of 229.

4. Sanath Jayasuriya and Marvan Atapattu

NEW ZEALAND - APRIL 08: Sri Lanka's Sanath Jayasuriya, left is hugged by his captain Marvan Atapattu after dismissing New Zealand's James Marshall lbw for 39 on the fifth day in the first cricket test at McLean Park Napier, New Zealand, Friday, April 08, 2005. (Photo by Ross Setford/Getty Images)

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This pair from Sri Lanka is known to everyone. Together they scored 4469 runs for Sri Lanka in just 118 innings. The highest partnership between them is that of 335 and the two had 9-century partnerships in the name of their formidable pair.

5. Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir


Image Source: Daily Mail

These two have turned fortunes India’s way between 2004 and 2012. Together this opening pair amassed 4412 runs in just 87 innings. The average the two shared was hefty and it stood tall at 52.5 with 11 century-plus stands.

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