Over the years, the Indian cricket team has always been considered a conservative side. There were some teams who used to take advantage of the first powerplay but India believed in keeping wickets in hand to accelerate towards the end. As a result, most of the Indian batsmen don’t have a strike-rate over 90 in the ODIs but you can also argue that there wasn’t a huge demand for players who could score quick runs. But now things have changed. A score around 300 is not enough as teams are chasing it pretty easily. ODIs are becoming like an extended version of T20 cricket where you have to have a good strike-rate. Many of the England and Australian batsmen go after the bowlers right from the start but that’s not the case with the Indians. Only three Indians have managed to score 1000+ runs better than run a ball. You expect more Indians to be on this list in the upcoming years but at the moment only three have achieved this so lets’ have a look at the three Indians.
- Virender Sehwag
It seems as if Virender Sehwag was just born on a different planet. He was batting in an era when 260 was a great score and batsmen around him had a strike-rate close to 70-75 but Sehwag was just way ahead of them. Virender Sehwag who played 251 ODIs scored 8273 runs at an average of 35.06 and a strike-rate of 104.34. Many explosive batsmen don’t have that kind of strike-rate in these days and Sehwag managed to do it 10 years ago. He is one of the Indian openers to score a double hundred and rightly so because you need to score fast to get a double hundred in ODIs. These numbers just tell us that Sehwag was a freak and other batsmen shouldn’t even think of playing like him because he was just too good.
- Kedar Jadhav
Kedar Jadhav who is currently out of the Indian ODI squad has played 73 ODIs and scored 1389 runs at an average of 42.09 and a strike-rate of 101.61. Jadhav had a great run of form for a year from 2017 when he scored his second ODI hundred against England at Pune in just 60 oddballs. A year after that he kept scoring some quick runs at the end of the innings which went unnoticed on many occasions. He was heavily criticized for scoring slowly in this IPL, but he has done fairly well for India in his 73 ODIs.
- Hardik Pandya
When you talk about strike-rates Hardik Pandya has to be on that list. Pandya scored a brilliant 90 against Australia which helped him get to 1000 ODI runs. Hardik Pandya has played 55 ODIs and scored 1075 runs at an average of 31.62 and a strike-rate of 114.97. He has the highest strike-rate by an Indian who has played more than 50 ODIs. We all have seen his explosive batting in the IPL and at the international level but now he is learning to play the long innings as well which is a great sign for Indian cricket. If he can play a long innings at a good pace than can be an asset to the Indian team. His batting will be key in the remaining white-ball games in Australia.