Welcome to the latest instalment of our most recent blog series Top Tens, which is posting roughly every Sunday/Monday, Australian time. Last week we talked about our top 10 favourite bowling performances of Australians in test cricket matches over the past 10 years. This week and the next 3 weeks of ‘top tens’ will be cricket-related as well as I mention about top 10 ODI batting performances by Australians, then fielding for ODI’s and the same (batting and fielding) for T20 Internationals’!
So without any further ado, I will dive in, and talk briefly why I love these batting ODI cricket performances by Aussies, and can watch them again and again!
Gilchrist- 149- World Cup 2007- v Sri Lanka– The most controversial of Adam Gilchrist’s ODI hundreds, because of his use of a squash ball in his bat to make it easier to grip, Gilchrist’s century propelled Australia to a third successive World Cup triumph, and capped off a dominant side winning all of their games in the 2007 series!
Gilchrist- 102- 2005- v World XI– It’s understandable that Gilchrist would receive another inclusion in this list, as he’s such a great batsman, even after 6-7 years after his retirement. And I guess you may have assumed that I would have included Gilchirst hitting a ton against a country like south Africa, England, India, Sri Lanka etc. But this special hundred (it’s only 102 though) is not big, but is included because of the opponent. In 2005, Australia played the World XI in ODI’s and a 6 days super test, and this hundred is only a snapshot of the series win that transpired. Though on paper the World XI had more individual stars, it is true that team cohesion is more important than talent, and we all saw that unfold in this one of a kind series!
Watson- 185- 2011- v Bangladesh– Starting out his career as a bowling allrounder, Shane Watson came into his own as a batsman, when he started opening in ODI’s. No other innings has showcased his talent for now being a brutal new ball hitter, than this violent assault on the Bangladeshi bowlers in 2011. His 15 fours and 15 sixes in his innings of 185 from 96 balls is truly remarkable, what so you think of the memorable innings?
Watson- 161- 2011- v England– Another hundred by Watson, this time against tougher opposition in England, in 2011. Deserving to be included, as this was one of the finals of the annual VB tri series, England posted a challenging total, but Watson ensured that Australia won with plenty of balls to spare, as he won the series for the Aussies, and the English bowlers had no answers for him.
Warner- 163- 2012- debut ODI hundred- v Sri Lanka– One of today’s most adaptable, feared and destructive batsmen in all three formats, Warner has evolved from a sometimes brash and carefree T20 slogger to a smart innovative cricketer whose wicket is such that every bowler wants to claim! His debut ODI hundred in 2012 was one of the most brilliantly paced innings I have seen from the young man; what do you think of the match winning innings?
Faulkner- 64 from 29- 2013- v India– One of the most promising allrounders over the last few months, James Faulkner showed his power and explosive hitting in late 2013 against India when he and Adam Voges had to chase the last 100 runs in the last 10 overs. Ending up with 64 runs, striking at more than 2 runs a ball (including a 30 runs from an Ishant Sharma over), this innings had commentators talking about Faulkner being the next Michael Bevan or Michael Hussey!
Faulkner- 69 from 47- 2014- v England– Fast forward to the beginning of 2014, and Faulkner rescued the Aussies again, this time against England. With the last wicket falling with 60 odd runs needed from about half as many balls (and Faulkner already on 14 from 23 balls); everyone thought that Australia would lose. But then he combined with Clint McKay for a superb last wicket partnership. Winning the game with 3 balls remaining, this innings has to be my favourite from Faulkner (yes, even better than his debut ODI 100, which is why the 100 is not part of the 10!)
Ponting- 164- 2006- v South Africa– One of the most memorable games of the past 10 years (because Australia hit a massive 434 from their 50 overs, then failed to defend that gigantic total, as South Africa notched a win for the history books; Ponting’s century (164 from 105 balls) was instrumental in getting Australia to that strong position early on. One of his most majestic hundreds, even though we lost, this innings will forever be etched in our memories as the century that should have single-handedly won Australia the game!
Hayden- 181- 2007- v NZ– Another game that we lost because of our bowling, opener Matthew Hayden played his part in 2007 against New Zealand, as Australia set the New Zealanders 347 for victory. Though the Black Caps cruised to victory, Hayden’s brilliant display of hitting, and him carrying his bat for the entire 50 overs is well worth the re-watch, don’t you think?
Mitchell Marsh- 86 from 51- 2014- v South Africa– One of today’s promising young cricketers, Mitchell Marsh seems like the complete package. He’s a brilliant striker of the ball, and his ability to bowl with the new ball is admirable and a fantastic skill. A few months ago, he struck the ball so cleanly that he pummelled Dale Steyn for 3 sixes in a row, and lifted Australia from a mediocre total to a formidable and challenging score. South Africa never was in the hunt, and Australia’s man of the match was Marsh, no surprise there!
So there you have it, my top ten favourite Australian batting performances in ODI Cricket over the past 10 years. So, what are yours? Let me know so that we can compare and have a healthy discussion!
Next week we’ll be talking about bowling performances by Australia in an ODI!