Best ODI XI with active cricketers aged above 35: The SportsRush present before you the Best ODI XI of active veteran cricketers.
Cricket fans generally ponder about permutations and combinations which will form the Best ODI XI regarding their favourite team/franchise/club.
Playing XIs can be made intriguing by applying certain filters on them. For example, selecting the best 11 players after the completion of one tournament is an interesting task for it involves building one team from all the teams who took part in the given tournament.
As far as the age factor is considered, let us go through the best (in their respective roles) active international cricketers who are aged 35 or above.
Best ODI XI with active cricketers aged above 35
Universe Boss Chris Gayle had announced his international retirement after the third ODI of India’s tour of West Indies last year. Having said that, Gayle decided to take a U-turn on his international retirement soon enough as he made himself available for West Indies until further notice right after the match.
Yet to play an ODI after the India series, the 40-year old left-hand opening batsman is still a tough force in the white-ball formats. In the 17 ODIs which Gayle played last year, he amassed 753 runs at an average of 50.20 and a strike rate of 109.76 including two centuries and five half-centuries.
Veteran Pakistan batsman Mohammad Hafeez is another of those cricketers who fits exceedingly well in this list. Having made his international debut in 2003, 39-year old Hafeez last played for Pakistan earlier this year.
Hafeez might not have played ODI cricket after the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 but he still remains a bankable face especially when it comes to players aged above 35.
The right-hand batsman, who is also allowed to bowl with his ban getting revoked now, recently represented Lahore Qalandars in the fifth season of the Pakistan Super League. In 10 T20s, Hafeez had scored 217 runs at an average of 36.16 and a strike rate of 121.91.
Faf du Plessis
South Africa’s Faf du Plessis, who recently handed over the captaincy to Quinton de Kock, is among the highly active international cricketers in this list. Du Plessis, 35, represent South Africa across formats and was recently in India for the now postponed three-match ODI series.
Much like du Plessis, veteran New Zealand batsman Ross Taylor is also among the cricketers who play across formats in this list. Having made his debut in 2006, Taylor is easily in between the best Kiwi batsmen right now.
The 36-year old right-hand batsman had recently become the first-ever cricketer to play 100 international matches across formats.
Much like Hafeez, veteran Pakistan all-rounder Shoaib Malik had also played his last ODI during the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 but played for Pakistan in T20Is at home in the recent past.
SHOAIB MALIK GOES BIG AGAIN AND CLEARS THE ROPES 💥
— Cricingif (@_cricingif) March 13, 2020
An experienced campaigner of 287 ODIs, 38-year old Malik scored 239 runs in eight T20s at an average of 34.14 and a strike rate of 134.26 including three half-centuries for Peshwar Zalmi in the Pakistan Super League.
MS Dhoni (c & wk)
Legendary India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who last played for India during the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019, missed the West Indies tour (and all subsequent series) last year due to his training for the parachute regiment of the Indian Army in Kashmir valley.
Dhoni was subsequently in the news in January when his name wasn’t to be found in the list of annually contracted Indian players. The 38-year old player might not have played top-level cricket for eight months now but that doesn’t take away his skill from him especially when it comes to active players aged 35 or above.
Afghanistan all-rounder Mohammed Nabi, who turned 35 earlier this year, is unequivocally a top name among active white-ball cricketers. Having retired from Test matches, Nabi continues to play for Afghanistan in ODIs and T20Is in addition to taking part in various T20 leagues.
Much like du Plessis, veteran Bangladesh pacer Mashrafe Mortaza also gave away captaincy to the opening batsman f his side in Tamim Iqbal.
Mortaza, who is arguably Bangladesh’s greatest-ever captain, hasn’t hung his boots from ODIs despite giving up on the other two formats. The 36-year old player last played for Bangladesh during their series against Zimbabwe earlier this year.
Having last played for India during the Asia Cup in 2016, 39-year old Harbhajan Singh is yet to bid adieu to international cricket. With his last ODI being played half-a-decade ago, the veteran spinner only plays in the Indian Premier League these days.
With an experience of 236 ODIs and 269 wickets, there is no doubt as to why Harbhajan won’t find a place in this side.
Harbhajan will be joined in this team by his India teammate in Amit Mishra. In 36 ODIs for India, Mishra had dismissed 64 batsmen at an average of 23.60, an economy rate of 4.72 and a strike rate of 29.9.
It was unfortunate that Mishra didn’t get to play another ODI after registering his second five-wicket haul and being declared Man of the Match and Man of the Series in the last ODI that he played against New Zealand in Visakhapatnam in 2016.
Mishra, 37, continues to role his arm over for Haryana and Delhi Capitals in Indian Premier League.
Veteran South Africa fast bowler Dale Steyn might have missed out on numerous ODIs due to injury concerns, him being fit and running right now includes him in this list without any doubt.
Steyn, who hasn’t played ODIs since March 2019, continues to play for South Africa in T20Is. The 36-year old pacer, who announced retirement from Test cricket in August 2019, also plays for various franchises in T20 leagues.