Cricket is a game in which the anticipation starts as soon as the opening duo gets on that field. A solid initial partnership can go a long way for the later part of the game. It builds the basis for the rest of the batting line-up to build upon. Here are some of the best opening duos in the history of cricket:
(1) Sourav Ganguly and Sachin Tendulkar: The two Indian legends top the list as one of the greatest, if not the best, opening pairs the cricket world has ever seen. Years after their retirement, they are still praised and bowed down to for the mark they made individually and together on cricket players and fans alike. The duo played for Team India for almost eleven years, for around 136 innings and a combined total of 6609 runs. The unbeatable pair has scored 21 hundred-plus scores and 23 fifty-plus scores, clearly, they almost always took the team to a flying start. The highest score their partnership fetched was 258 runs
(2) Adam Gilchrist and Mathew Hayden: This Australian pair was no less as the two world-class players brought Australia onto the map for cricket. Gilchrist’s power hitting and Hayden’s pace complimented each other very well as they played for Team Australia for seven years, including 114 innings and a combined total of 5372 runs. Their highest partnership score is 172 runs. Together they scored 16 hundred plus scores and 29 fifty plus scores.
(3) Gordon Greenidge and Desmond Haynes: This West Indies duo made the headlines during the prime time of cricket in the country. West Indies was known as the ‘Team of the Gods’ and this pair were the major reason why. With their explosive contribution, they played for almost 12 years for the team for a total of 5150 runs from 102 innings. Their highest partnership score was an unbeaten 192 runs. They have 16 hundred plus scores and 24 fifty plus scores under their name. They were ahead of their time and they may have created a better name for themselves if they were playing at this time and age.
(4) Virender Sehwag and Sachin Tendulkar: The “Cricket God” makes the lost again but this time with a different Indian player – Virender Sehwag. They quickly became a crowd favorite with Sehwag’s power hitting and Tendulkar’s stroke play. Their deadly combination was the talk of the town for a long time as they fit together like a jigsaw puzzle. Playing for the team together for almost 12 years, they scored 3919 runs from a total of 93 innings. The highest score the duo has made is 182 runs and they have scored 12 hundred plus scores and 18 fifty plus scores together.
(5) Adam Gilchrist and Mark Waugh: Gilchrist also makes the list once more with Mark Vaugh. Mark Vaugh opened with Gilchrist before Mathew Hayden made an entry into international cricket. This Australian duo made a fine partnership, playing for about four years for the team. The period was short but their alarming total of 3853 runs from 93 innings says otherwise. Their highest partnership yielded 206 runs. They have together scored 8 hundred plus scores and 20 fifty plus scores.
(6) David Boon and Geoff Marsh: Another great pair for the Australian cricket team – David Boon and Geoff Marsh. Geoff Marsh switched to opening after a few years of playing in the mid-lineup and found a great partner in David Boon. The duo served their team for six years for around 88 innings and 3523 runs. The highest score their partnership has yielded is 212 runs. Together they have scored 7 hundred plus scores and 25 fifty plus scores.
(7) Marvan Atapattu and Sanath Jayasuriya: This duo created a storm in Sri Lanka that hasn’t been beaten till date. The understanding and coordination between the two were almost impossible to recreate. Atapattu played on the defensive side while Jayasuriya went ahead with the big shots. This pair served their team for almost a decade, playing for 79 innings and scoring 3382 runs in the process. Their highest partnership score is 237 runs. They have score 8 hundred plus scores and 19 fifty plus scores.
(8) Tillakaratne Dilshan and Upul Tharanga: Finally a pair that is still currently in game. Another deadly duo from Sri Lanka, these two have made significant contributions recently in the country’s current world ranking in cricket. Dilshan is the power hitter while Tharanga plays it more safe, balancing it out between the two. They have served the team for four years and running, having played 67 innings so far in which they have together scored 3052 runs. Their highest score in a partnership has been 282 runs. They have scored 9 hundred plus and 13 fifty plus scores so far.
(9) Herschelle Gibbs and Graeme Smith: This opening duo from Proteus has left-hander Graeme Smith and right-handed Gibbs giving the pair the best of both worlds. Both are not just spectacular together but also amazing individually, They have many a time provided South Africa with a solid start. They have played for the team for around seven years, consisting of 74 innings and 3007 runs. The pair’s highest score is 174 runs. They have 8 hundred plus and 13 fifty plus scores in their pocket.
(10) Aamer Sohail and Saeed Anwar: Concluding with this opening pair from Pakistan, they have been the main strength for the team and have often won the game for them. They have served Pakistan for ten years with 73 innings and a total of 2856 runs. The highest score fetched by their partnership is 173 runs. They have scored 3 hundred plus and 20 fifty plus scores.