While opening the batting is the toughest job in Test cricket, it’s that much easier in ODI cricket because the white ball doesn’t swing that much after the first couple of overs.
When you open the batting in ODI cricket, you get the maximum time to play a big knock, which you might not get if you bat down the order at no. 5 or no. 6. That’s why most of the centuries in 50-over games are scored by the top order batsmen.
Here are the Indian openers who scored centuries in the same ODI most times –
#1 Tendulkar/Ganguly (3 times):
Sachin Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly have been India’s most successful opening pair till date. They had 26 century and 29 half-century partnerships together, but there were 3 games where both Tendulkar and Ganguly scored hundreds.
Tendulkar and Ganguly, because of being a right-left combination, always complemented each other and opened the batting for India in a total of 176 games, adding more than 8000 runs together.
#2 Rohit/Rahul (2 times):
Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul have only recently started to open the batting together and they have done so only when Shikhar Dhawan has been unavailable due to some reason. But, in a very short space of time, Rohit and Rahul already have had two ODIs where they both scored hundreds.
Rohit and Rahul average 83 as an opening pair, scoring 1162 runs in just 15 games with 5 century partnerships.
#3 Sachin/Sehwag (1 time):
Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag were a really destructive opening pair as well, but there was just one game where both of them scored hundreds together.
However, this opening pair made a match winning impact for India on a regular basis simply because of the rate at which they batted. There was hardly any game where they didn’t attack the new ball bowlers by taking advantage of the fielding restrictions.
#4 Ganguly/Sehwag (1 time):
Sourav Ganguly and Virender Sehwag were a very decent opening pair as well, although they didn’t get to bat together a lot as Sachin was opening with Sehwag and Ganguly was batting at no. 3.
It was mostly when Sachin was unavailable that Ganguly and Sehwag opened the batting for India and they averaged 42 as a batting pair. There was one ODI where both Ganguly and Sehwag scored centuries.
#5 Rohit/Dhawan (1 time):
Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan are India’s second most successful opening pair after Sourav Ganguly and Sachin Tendulkar and they have also scored centuries together in an ODI on one occasion.
It happened a couple of years back in the Asia Cup in UAE where they both got to the three figure mark chasing a target of 230 odd runs against Pakistan. India won that match by 9 wickets.
#6 Dhawan/Rahane (1 time):
Rahane has been India’s third choice opener for most parts of his ODI career and has opened the batting only when one of India’s first choice openers was not available.
Since Rohit Sharma got injured in the first game of the ODI series against England in 2014, Rahane opened the batting for India for the rest of the series with Shikhar Dhawan and in of the games of that series, both him and Dhawan got a hundred each.