One of the most trusted cricket websites, ESPN Cricinfo recently announced their best ODI XI for the last 25 years and fans cannot wait to have a look.
The gentlemen’s game has seen a giant leap of progress during the turn of the millennium and the credit goes to the golden generation of players who have made the game what it is today.
The task of selecting the cream of the crop is always a huge ordeal and the Cricinfo staff have released their ODI XI for the last 25 years after comprehensive evaluation by the jury.
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The jury comprised of notable experienced international cricketers such as Ian Chappell, Sanjay Manjrekar, John Wright, Dav Whatmore and Mark Nicholas.
The openers included Australian wicket-keeper Adam Gilchrist and the leading run-scorer in ODIs, Sachin Tendulkar. Gilchrist’s incredible striking in the power play overs along with his stats gave him an edge over his compatriots. Whereas, Tendulkar’s inclusion was a no-brainer after being one of the players to revolutionize modern day ODI’s.
The middle order comprises of Virat Kohli, Brian Lara, AB De Villiers and Jacques Kallis. Kohli’s undoubted skill, matched with his ability to win matches on his own has gifted him a spot in this prestigious line-up despite having several years left in him.
Brian Lara’s exquisite consistency and flair, blended with the recently retired AB de Villiers’ aggression makes an interesting dominating pair in the middle order.
As far as all-rounders are concerned, South Africa’s Jacques Kallis made the cut to provide the balance for the team with both the bat and the ball as well.
India’s MS Dhoni managed to get into the line-up as the wicket-keeper as well as the leader of the squad. The former Indian captain’s achievements during his captaincy tenure made him the obvious choice for the role.
Leading the pace department is legendary Pakistan seamer Wasim Akram along with Australia’s Glenn McGrath, Undoubtedly the two of the best bowlers to run-in with the white ball. McGrath’s discipline with line and length along with Akram’s natural ability to swing the ball and bowl Yorkers at the end make them the leading contenders for this department.
Muttiah Muralitharan and Shane Warne were revealed as the final members of the line-up. The spin twins have managed to spin a web over their opponents over the years.
The announced line-up came up with its fair share of controversy as several people felt the inclusion of Shane Warne in the squad was not justified.
What do you think of this line-up? Drop in your thoughts in the comments section.