Most Fours in ODI Cricket
In this article, we are going to take a look at 10 players with the most fours in ODI cricket. We have also reviewed teams’ penchant to score fours in ODIs and are ready to share with you many interesting findings based on the carried out analysis of the data.
- Most Fours in ODIs by a Player
- Most Fours in ODIs by a Team
Most Fours in ODIs by a Player
1. Sachin Tendulkar: 2016
In 463 ODIs, Tendulkar has scored 18426 runs, including 2016 fours. In other words, 8064 of his 18426 runs, or 43.76 percent, have come from fours. The ODI innings that Sachin scored the most fours in came against South Africa in Gwalior on 24 February 2010 when he became the first batsman to hit a double century in ODI cricket. In that match, India batted first and lost an early wicket, that of Sehwag, who was caught by Steyn off Parnell for 9 when the Indian score was 25/1. Tendulkar was joined by Dinesh Karthik, in the company of whom Sachin registered a second-wicket stand of 194 runs. Karthik departed for 79 off 85 balls to bring Yusuf Pathan to the wicket. Pathan and Tendulkar had put on 81 for the third wicket before Pathan was dismissed for 36 off 23 balls. In came Dhoni and when the Indian innings ended at 401/3 in 50 overs, the two players shared an unbeaten stand of 101 for the fourth wicket with Dhoni making 68 off 35 balls. Sachin was 200 not out with 25 fours and 3 sixes. India went on to bowl out South Africa for 248 in the 43rd over to register a 153-run victory.
2. Sanath Jayasuriya: 1500
In 445 ODIs, Jayasuriya has scored 13430 runs, including 1500 fours. In other words, 6000 of his 13430 runs, or 44.68 percent, have come from fours. In the first ODI of a series on Sri Lanka’s tour of the Netherlands on 4 July 2006, left-handed opener Sanath Jayasuriya scored 157 with 24 fours. Sri Lanka batted first, and Jayasuriya soon lost his opening partner, Upul Tharanga, when the score was 28. A 60-run partnership with Jayawardene followed before the right-hander was out for 34. Then came a 149-run partnership with Sangakkara before the wicket-keeper was dismissed for 46. Jayasuriya was the next to go after a 54-run stand with Dilshan who made 117. By the time Jayasuriya was dismissed he had made 157 runs off 104 balls with 24 fours and a six. Riding on Jayasuriya’s innings, Sri Lanka scored 443/9 before bowling out the Netherlands for 248 in the 49th over for a 195-run win.
3. Kumar Sangakkara: 1385
In 404 ODIs, Sangakkara has scored 14234 runs, including 1385 fours. In other words, 5540 of his 14234 runs, or 38.92 percent, have come from fours. In the first ODI of a series on the South Africa tour of Sri Lanka in Colombo on 20 July 2013, Sangakkara hammered South African bowlers to make his highest ODI score of 169 runs off 137 balls with 18 fours and 6 sixes. Riding on his innings, Sri Lanka made 320/5 before bowling out the opposition for 140 to register a 180-run win.
4. Ricky Ponting: 1231
In 375 ODIs, Ponting has scored 13704 runs, including 1231 fours. In other words, 4924 of his 13704 runs, or 35.93 percent, have come from fours. In the sixth match of the Pepsi triangular series on 11 April 1998 in Delhi, Ponting scored 145 against Zimbabwe, including 18 fours and a six to boost Australia’s score to 294/3 before they restricted Zimbabwe to 278/9.
5. Adam Gilchrist: 1162
In 287 ODIs, Gilchrist has scored 9619 runs, including 1162 fours. In other words, 4648 of his 9619 runs, or 48.32 percent, have come from fours. Chasing a target of 229 against England at the Oval in the third match of a series during Australia’s tour of England on 12 July 2005, Gilchrist hammered 121 off 101 balls, including 17 fours and 2 sixes to help his side overwhelm the target with 8 wickets and 15 overs to spare.
6. Virender Sehwag: 1132
In 251 ODIs, Sehwag has scored 8273 runs, including 1132 fours. In other words, 4528 of his 8273 runs, or 54.73 percent, have come from fours. In the fourth ODI of a series in Indore on 8 December 2011 against the West Indies, Sehwag registered what was then the highest individual innings in an ODI. He made 219 off 149 balls with 25 fours and 7 sixes to help India to a mammoth score of 418/5 before they bowled out the West Indies for 265.
7. Chris Gayle: 1128
In 301 ODIs, Gayle has scored 10480 runs, including 1128 fours. In other words, 4512 of his 10480 runs, or 43.05 percent, have come from fours. In the first ODI of a series in Bulawayo on the West Indies tour of Zimbabwe on 22 November 2003, Gayle hit 19 fours and 2 sixes in a blazing innings of 153. He was involved in a 176-run partnership with Brian Lara to help his side post a total of 347/6 before they restricted Zimbabwe to 173/3 in 34.5 runs to win by the D/L method in a rain-curtailed game.
8. Sourav Ganguly: 1122
In 311 ODIs, Ganguly has scored 11363 runs, including 1122 fours. In other words, 4488 of his 11363 runs, or 39.50 percent, have come from fours. In the 21st match of the ICC World Cup in 1999, Ganguly scored 183 against Sri Lanka on 26 May 26 in Taunton to help India to an imposing score of 373/6. His innings included 17 fours and 7 sixes and came with the assistance of Rahul Dravid with whom Ganguly shared a 318-run second-wicket partnership. Sri Lanka were dismissed for 216 to give India a dominant 157-run victory.
9. Mahela Jayawardene: 1119
In 448 ODIs, Jayawardene has scored 12650 runs, including 1119 fours. In other words, 4476 of his 12650 runs, or 34.94 percent, have come from fours. In the second ODI of a series on Sri Lanka’s tour of England, Jayawardene scored 144 in 150 balls, including 14 fours. His innings helped Sri Lanka to a score of 309/5 before they were able to dismiss England for 240 in the 46th over to emerge winners by 69 runs.
10. Tillakaratne Dilshan: 1111
In 330 ODIs, Dilshan has scored 10290 runs, including 1111 fours. In other words, 4444 of his 10290 runs, or 43.19 percent, have come from fours. In the 18th match of the ICC World Cup in Melbourne on 26 February 2015, Dilshan hammered the Bangladesh bowlers to register his highest ODI score of 161 not out with 22 fours. After an opening stand of 122 with Thirimanne, Dilshan was involved in an unbroken stand of 210 for the second wicket. The innings helped boost Sri Lanka to a score of 332/1 before Sri Lanka managed to bowl out Bangladesh for 240 in 47 overs.
|2||Sanath Jayasuriya||445||1500||Sri Lanka|
|3||KC Sangakkara||404||1385||Sri Lanka|
|7||Chris Gayle||301||1128||West Indies|
|9||Mahela Jayawardene||448||1119||Sri lanka|
|10||TM Dilshan||330||1111||Sri lanka|
*Updated on 28 August 2019
Most Fours in ODIs by a Team
1. India – 18300 Fours
India lead in the tally of fours scored in ODI games. India also boast the biggest number of ODI matches played: 987. Based on these numbers, we can conclude that on average India score 18.54 per ODI match.
2. Australia – 16697 Fours
After India, Australia have hit the most ODI fours as well as played the most ODI matches. On average, Australian batsmen score 17.59 fours in every ODI game.
3. Pakistan – 15673 Fours
Pakistan are third on the list of fours scored in ODI matches. They have played 927 ODI games, third only to India and Australia. The average number of fours scored per ODI by Pakistan batsmen works out to 16.90.
4. Sri Lanka – 14617 Fours
Sri Lanka are fourth on the list of teams in terms of fours scored in ODIs. Considering that they have played 852 ODI games, we can come to the conclusion that their batsmen score 17.15 fours per ODI game, on average.
5. West Indies – 13706 Fours
The West Indies rank fourth in the number of fours scored in ODI matches. However, they are lower down the list when we consider the number of ODI matches played by them. Working out the average number of fours scored by West Indian batsmen per game, we are surprised to see a high figure of 25.01.
6. England – 13506 Fours
While England have scored 13506 fours, they have played 749 ODI games, giving rise to an average of 18.03 fours scored per ODI match.
7. New Zealand – 12597 Fours
New Zealand are next on the list of the number of fours scored in ODIs. However, they have played more ODI matches – 772 — than either the West Indies or England. This gives them a relatively lower average number, 16.32, of fours scored per match.
8. South Africa – 11746 Fours
South Africa are next when speaking of the number of fours scored in ODIs. However, they have played fewer matches than England or New Zealand. In other words, they have a much higher average number of fours scored per match, which is 18.79.
9. Zimbabwe – 8292 Fours
Zimbabwe have scored 8292 fours in ODIs putting them just ahead of Bangladesh among the full ICC members. They have played 529 matches which is again second last on the ICC membership rung, giving them an average of 15.67 fours scored per ODI match by their batsmen.
10. Bangladesh – 6451 Fours
Bangladesh are at the bottom in terms of fours scored as well as ODI matches played. Interestingly, they have a relatively higher average of fours scored per ODI.
We have analysed the reliance of players on fours by calculating the percentage of runs scored by these players in the form of fours. Ranking the players in terms of percentage of runs that come from fours, we find the following order: Sehwag, Gilchrist, Jayasuriya, Tendulkar, Dilshan, Gayle, Ganguly, Sangakkara, Ponting, Jayawardene. From this, we can safely conclude that players at the top of this order rely more on fours than on running between the wickets. Ponting, Sangakkara and Jayawardene are middle-order batsmen, while the rest are openers. We can see that openers hit a greater percentage of fours, which could be accounted for by the fact that they play more powerplay overs. Moreover, the more aggressive the mindset, the greater the reliance on fours. Thus, Sehwag easily tops the list in terms of an aggressive attitude, closely followed by Gilchrist and Jayasuriya. We would expect to be able to predict these findings. However, we are surprised not to find Gayle at the top. Further analysis might prove that Gayle hits a large proportion of sixes and does not rely only on fours to boost his scores.
We get the most interesting team findings when we reorder the list of teams based on the average number of fours per ODI game. Such reordering brings the West Indies to the top of the list with an average of 25.01 fours scored per game. The second place is taken by South Africa who boast an average of 18.79 fours scored per game. Third come India with an average of 18.54 fours scored per ODI. England are placed fourth, with an average of 18.03 fours scored per game. The fifth place in taken by Australia with an average fours-per-game stat of 17.59. They are followed – surprisingly – by Bangladesh, who boast an average of 17.16 fours scored per game. Next come Sri Lanka, who boast an average fours scored per game of 17.15. Pakistan are eighth for an average number of fours scored per ODI: their stat is 16.90. New Zealand are ninth with an average number of fours scored per game being 16.32. Zimbabwe bring up the rear in terms of an average number of fours scored by their batsmen in ODIs. The number is relatively low, at 15.67. Among the most surprising team findings, we have concluded that Australia have belied our expectations in terms of fours scored per ODI. They are ranked fifth, with even New Zealand ahead of them on that score. Another surprising finding is to see Pakistan languishing in eighth place below Sri Lanka and even Bangladesh.
Joint Player-Team Findings
Three players, Sehwag, Ganguly and Tendulkar, account for 23.33 percent of fours scored by India. Four players, Jayasuriya, Sangakkara, Dilshan and Jayawardene, account for 35 percent of the fours scored by Sri Lanka. Two players, Ponting and Gilchrist, account for 14.33 percent of fours scored by Australia.
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