In the hunt for glory across the 22 yards, cricketers stake their lives along the line with incredulous feats that makes them stand out amongst the ordinary.
Inhuman records, extra-terrestrial agility, godlike precision in batting, brutal fast bowling, wizardry in those spinning fingers, they all add up in constituting what one calls a stalwart of the sport. However, amidst all these feats, remains shrouded a few infamous records which no one wishes to see next to their names. One such feat is getting out for a golden duck. Golden duck in cricket means getting out on the very first ball that you face.
Despite being phenomenal batsmen of the game, a few unfortunate names failed to parry the clutches of this monstrosity that invokes instant ridicule across the cricketing canon. We will look at five names that tragically have registered the highest number of golden ducks in One Day internationals.
Moin Khan – 11 times
Despite being one of the finest wicketkeepers in the echelons of Pakistan, Khan’s 14-year long glittering career has been besmirched by this infamous record in the shorter version of the game.
His belligerence towards the end of the innings always made him an imperative moniker to finish off the games in style and it was under his leadership that Pakistan managed to chronicle their first Asia Cup triumph in 2000 by humbling Sri Lanka in the finals.
Being a middle-order batsman who usually used to come down in the 5th or 6th position, he got out for a golden duck a record 11 times. This probably was due to the number he was batting in. Pakistan had a fine crop of batsmen at the end of the 20th century that didn’t really give him much batting time. In order to execute faster knocks, at times he ran out of depth to produce the perfect shot and in the process lost his wicket in the very first ball.
Muttiah Muralitharan – 11 times
Sri Lanka’s best player ever, who went on to win the world with the highest number of international wickets pervaded across all formats of the game, Muttiah Muralitharan wasn’t quite a batter that you would expect him to be.
Coming at number 9, 10, or 11, he used to complete the headcount with the bat as the right-handed off-spinner hardly used to realize what is going on around him.
From 328 innings in all formats of the sport, the Sri Lankan spinner managed to amass 1936 runs that featured a career-best of 67 in Test cricket and an unbeaten 33 in ODI cricket.
Unfortunately, he was too underprepared with the bat that begot 11 golden ducks in his glittering cricket career and he also scored the highest number of ducks in all formats of the game, registering 59 dismissals for naught in the process.
Javagal Srinath – 11 times
The man who revolutionized India’s pace bowling with his brutal pace of 150 plus kays, becoming the first Indian to register the magical numbers, Srinath was also a very valuable batting option towards the fag end of the innings.
Until date, he has achieved the status of the fastest delivery bowled by an Indian in international cricket which read a staggering speed of 154.5 kmph against Pakistan in the 1999 World Cup. Though there are a lot of controversies about the fact, Zimbabwe opener, Alistair Campbell claimed that he faced Srinath at 157 kays in a Test match.
A man who was tried in all positions of the batting line up, except for the opening duo, registering a fabulous 9 not outs in World Cup cricket which is the second-highest until date, he also got dismissed in the very first ball or a record 11 times.
Shahid Afridi – 12 times
The maddening hard-hitter of the ball for Pakistan who registered the fastest ODI century in his very second ODI of his career, Shahid Afridi was a hero of several dramatic ties.
Known for his skitter deliveries that invoked nightmares for the batsman, he was a batting all-rounder whose batting form dipped steeply towards the end of his career.
However, always pushed forward to play an ultra-attacking game, Afridi ended up hammering the ball mostly into the arms of the fielders, thereby registering 12 golden ducks from 369 innings in his long-spanning career.
Lasith Malinga – 13 times
Despite being a bowling wonder who still holds the record of scalping four wickets in four consecutive deliveries in the World Cup that almost annihilated South Africa in a high-octane encounter, his batting prowess has always been questioned.
Not deeming it to be necessary enough, Malinga is a wild wielder of the bat and his equation always stays simple; you hit or you miss. In this black or white process of the reverse-swinger, he got out fr a golden duck a record 13 times.