The Greatest of All Time: Top 10 Indian Batsmen 2024

Who's the best Indian batsman of all time? We've listed the top ten who dominated the cricketing scene in their day, as well the current crop in their respective squads. Along with this, we've included some useful insights on betting on the Top Batsman market – read on to find out more!

The 10 Best Indian Batsmen of All Time

A cricket-loving nation at heart, it’s no surprise that India has given birth to several top-notch batsmen who have mesmerized the global cricketing circuit with their performances, and etched their name in gold among the league of batting legends.

Here is a list of the ten top Indian batsmen who have consistently showcased exceptional cricketing skills throughout their career and during top cricket leagues.

1. Sachin Tendulkar
  • Joined Indian national side in: November 1989
  • Retired in: November 2013
  • Test & ODI matches played: 663
  • Total runs scored: 34,347 runs
  • Total centuries: 100 centuries and 164 half-centuries
  • World Cup won: ICC World Cup 2011

If one were to ask who is the best batsman in India, the answer would unanimously be “Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar”. The God of Cricket, Master Blaster – these are some titles that Sachin Tendulkar has rightly earned while playing for the Indian side for more than 24 years. The batsman started his international career with a Test match against Pakistan at the tender age of only 16 years.

Ever since then, Tendulkar has displayed nothing but sheer brilliance while batting and has single-handedly brought many victories for the team. His passion and dedication towards the sport has earned him several laurels, the most prestigious one being India’s highest civilian honour – the Bharat Ratna – and has even been placed in the same league as international cricket legends like Don Bradman and Vivian Richards.

One of the starkest memories of his hard-hitting skills is an ODI match against South Africa in 2010, where he became the first player to score a double-century in the ODI format. Performances like these, and his immense contribution to the growth of Indian cricket, has earned him the status of a legendary Indian batsman and the No. 1 spot in our list of the top Indian batsmen.

2. Sunil Gavaskar
  • Joined Indian national side in: March 1971
  • Retired in: November 1987
  • Test & ODI matches played: 233
  • Total runs scored: 13,214 runs
  • Total centuries: 35 centuries and 72 half-centuries
  • World Cup won: ICC World Cup 1983

Counted among the old guards of Indian cricket, Sunil Gavaskar belongs to the legendary team that won the maiden World Cup for India in 1983. He is one of the most flawless opener batsmen that the Indian team ever had, and is arguably the first Indian cricket player of his kind who introduced technical batting on the Indian side.

Admired for his concentration, hard-hitting capabilities, and an almost unbreachable defence, Gavaskar was a nightmare among bowlers.

He is particularly remembered for his brilliant performances against the West Indies team in those years, when they had one of the fiercest bowling attacks. In fact, his best performance to date was against West Indies in his debut series, where he scored 220 runs against the Windies in a Test match.

He has received the prestigious Padmi Shri and Padma Bhushan from the President of India for his contribution to Indian cricket, and was also inducted in ICC’s Hall of Fame in 2009.

3. Dilip Vengsarkar
  • Joined Indian national side in: January 1976
  • Retired in: November 1991
  • Test & ODI matches played: 245
  • Total runs scored: 10,376 runs
  • Total centuries: 18 centuries and 58 half-centuries
  • World Cup won: ICC World Cup 1983

The tall, slimly-built Dilip Vengsarkar belongs to the early-80s generation of Indian cricketers, earning the title of not only the top Indian batsman but also the best batsman in the world when the ICC rankings were first launched during 1986-87.

He opened in the middle order and was admired for his fearless stroke shots against the West Indies pace attack consisting of legendary bowlers like Wayne Daniel, Colin Croft, and Joel Garner. The Gavaskar-Vengsarkar duo was, in fact, famous for their high-precision batting and long partnerships, and held permanent positions in the team almost throughout their careers.

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4. Rahul Dravid
  • Joined Indian national side in: April 1996
  • Retired in: January 2012
  • Test & ODI matches played: 508
  • Total runs scored: 24,177 runs
  • Total centuries: 48 centuries and 146 half-centuries
  • World Cup won: –

The best example of a classical batsman with laser-sharp focus and a ton of patience at the crease, Rahul Dravid is the most clinical batsman the world has ever known. A firm believer of hard work and perseverance, Dravid was the most dependable batsman in the squad and toiled hard to reach at the top.

He had the skill of holding the crease for hours together when the team wanted to save wickets (he once held the crease for 12 hours straight in a Test match against Pakistan), while swirling the bat wide and high at the opportune times.

He was extremely reliable and had saved the team from several knocks during critical match moments, earning him the reputation and nickname of ‘The Wall’.

Often compartmentalised as a typical test cricketer, he has a record of scoring 10,000+ runs in ODIs, clearly proving his commendable contribution in limited-overs format too. His fielding skills were also known to be deadly, which is why he is reputed to be the most successful slip fielder of all time.

5. Sourav Ganguly
  • Joined Indian national side in: January 1992
  • Retired in: November 2008
  • Test & ODI matches played: 424
  • Total runs scored: 18,575 runs
  • Total centuries: 38 centuries and 107 half-centuries
  • World Cup won: –

The ‘Maharaja of Bengal’ changed the face of Indian cricket during his tenure as the captain of the Indian side. The left-handed batsman brought the much-needed aggression to the Indian side, changing the rather soft-spoken image of the team to one that was more aggressive (remember the T-shirt spin at the Lord’s?)

He undertook a massive overhaul of the squad, experimenting with diverse strategies and new players. As for his batting, he wreaked havoc with his off-break shots and reigned as one of the leading ODI batsmen during his stint.

One of his best performances was against Sri Lanka in the ICC World Cup 1999, where he scored 183 runs in 158 balls and led India to victory by a massive margin of 157 runs.

6. Virender Sehwag
  • Joined Indian national side in: April 1999
  • Retired in: march 2013
  • Test & ODI matches played: 355
  • Total runs scored: 16,859 runs
  • Total centuries: 38 centuries and 70 half-centuries
  • World Cup won: ICC World Cup 2011

Known as much for his quick-wit as for his batting prowess, the opener batsman enjoyed his innings like no other. Be it a Test match or an ODI, Sehwag’s batting style was always the same – hit each delivery with an eye on the boundary, and boy, that served him well.

His batting stance and aggression on the field was extremely similar to Tendulkar’s, especially the back-foot play and the smooth straight drives – leading some to refer to him as the latter's ‘clone within the cricketing fraternity.

In a career full of daring batting with no worry about losing his wicket, he has built many records that other batsmen can only dream of. He was also the first Indian batsman to score a triple century, even going on to score another one later on. He was also credited for scoring the highest runs in ODI during that time, when he knocked a smooth 219 runs against West Indies, with six overs to spare.

7. MS Dhoni
  • Joined Indian national side in: December 2004
  • Retired in: July 2019
  • Test & ODI matches played: 440
  • Total runs scored: 15,649 runs
  • Total centuries: 16 centuries and 106 half-centuries
  • World Cup won: ICC World Cup 2011, ICC T20I World Cup 2007

One of the most revolutionary captains of the Indian team, Dhoni can be distinctly credited for the high fitness standards that have come to be expected from the Indian players today. Under his leadership, the team gave massive opportunities to new talent and experimented with dynamic plays that caught the opposition off-guard many a times.

As for his batting, Dhoni has been a big-time smasher since Day One. Not exactly a technical batsman, Dhoni has carved a homegrown batting technique for himself that has worked fairly well for him. He relies on brute power and quick running in between the wickets to get runs, and is famous for popularising the helicopter shot.

He always delivered under pressure, with a penchant for finishing the game with boundaries. He has also seen the team through several crucial wins, such as the 2007 T20 World Cup and the ICC World Cup 2011, where he led the team to its first-ever World Cup victory at home.

8. VVS Laxman
  • Joined Indian national side in: November 1996
  • Retired in: January 2012
  • Test & ODI matches played: 220
  • Total runs scored: 11,119 runs
  • Total centuries: 23 centuries and 66 half-centuries
  • World Cup won: –

A true Test player, VVS Laxman had one of the best wrist plays among the international batting fraternity. His style involved long, elegant strokes which were often better than Sachin’s too.

The best part about his technique was his ability to play the ball equally well on the off and the leg side. That rare quality made the opponents wonder where to strike him with their deliveries, and particularly so with the Australians, against whom he scored 2,000+ runs throughout his cricketing career.

9. Yuvraj Singh
  • Joined Indian national side in: October 2000
  • Retired in: June 2017
  • Test & ODI matches played: 344
  • Total runs scored: 10,601 runs
  • Total centuries: 17 centuries and 63 half-centuries
  • World Cup won: ICC World Cup 2011, ICC T20I World Cup 2007

This Punjabi lad was the star boy of the Indian cricket team during his entire career until the 2011 World Cup. Tall and left-handed, Singh had an aggressive batting style and an ability to turn matches in a few overs alone.

He played a pivotal role in helping the team to clinch the 2007 ICC T20 World Cup, where he knocked six sixes in an over, that too against an established bowler like Stuart Broad. He performed exceptionally well in the ICC World Cup 2011 too, where he won four Player of the Match awards and was also named Player of the Tournament.

10. Gautam Gambhir
  • Joined Indian national side in: April 2003
  • Retired in: November 2016
  • Test & ODI matches played: 205
  • Total runs scored: 9,392 runs
  • Total centuries: 20 centuries and 56 half-centuries
  • World Cup won: ICC World Cup 2011, ICC T20I World Cup 2007

Probably one of the most underrated Indian batsman, this Delhi-based cricketer received more recognition post-retirement than during his days in cricket. Gambhir personified precision and calculative batting, playing well across all formats.

The most significant feats in his career were his performances during the 2007 and 2011 World Cup, where he played a crucial role in getting quick runs for the team during the finals. He scored a brilliant 75 of 54 balls in the 2007 finals and 97 of 122 balls in the 2011 finals, being the top run-scorer for the team in both matches.

Top Indian Batsmen in the Current Side

In this section, we have listed a few of the best-performing batsmen in the current Indian squad. These players have already established themselves – or are on the path to establish themselves – as some of the top Indian batsmen of all times.

1. Virat Kohli

The batting sensation took the world by storm with his athletic fitness and classy shots that drained the blood out of bowlers’ faces. The team regained their test dominance under his captaincy, and also reached several World Cup finals during his tenure.

Kohli recently broke Sachin’s record of scoring the most ODI runs away from home (5,065 runs) and continues to be a solid middle-order batsman for the team.

2. Rohit Sharma

The newly-appointed captain is the best opener, only second to Gavaskar, that the Indian team has ever had. Sharma is an ardent believer in building skills rather than relying on inherent talent, and that’s something that the batsman had to do a lot to cement his place in the Indian side.

He is a fearless hitter, one who knocks effortless centuries once he tides over the first couple of overs. Moreover, he has scored three ODI double-centuries, the highest being 264 runs against Sri Lanka at the Eden Gardens in 2014.

3. KL Rahul

The opening batsman has a rather technical and patient playing style, one that often draws comparison to the batting great, Rahul Dravid. Rahul has displayed the ability to hold the wicket on challenging pitches like England and New Zealand, and can be counted upon to tide over difficult overs when the team is going through a rough patch.

Betting on Top Indian Batsmen: The Top Batsman Market

An example of the top barsmen market odds on 10bet

(Source: 10bet)

Cricket betting is filled with myriad markets, offering punters the opportunity to bet on several important moments of the game. However, one of the most popular markets among all is the Top Batsman market.

As is evident from its name, this market involves betting on the batsman who will score the maximum runs in the match or the tournament. It's also commonly referred to as the Top Runs-Scorer market.

So, if you have a pretty good hunch who the best Indian batsman will be taking to the pitch on matchday, this market is definitely worth your while!

Tips to Bet on the Top Batsman Market

While betting always relies substantially on luck, it always helps to stay abreast of past performances and the latest updates to place smarter bets.

Below are some simple tips that you should keep in mind to improve your winning potential in the Top Batsman betting market:

  • Identify the playing style of the batsman and compare it with the bowling you are expecting in the upcoming match. This can help you predict how well your pick will perform.
  • Do not always rely on the big names. It’s often the underdogs who will net you significant winnings, so don't ignore them!
  • Study the pitch conditions as well as past performances of your selection. Pitch conditions play a crucial role in determining how the player will perform. For example, on a pitch like Wankhede in Mumbai, there was no doubt Tendulkar would perform at his very best. It was not only his home ground, but also where he received massive support from the fan, which is yet another determining factor in deciding how players will perform.

Alternative Markets to Bet on Top Indian Batsmen

Apart from Top Batsman, here are some more cricket betting markets that can serve you well:

  1. Player to Score 50/100: This market involves betting on the player who will score a century or a half-century in a match.
  2. Man of the Match: The Man of the Match market allows you to bet on the player who you think will perform the best during a match. While the probability of a batsman winning in this market is fairly high, keep in mind that other players could also win the title.

Top Indian Batsmen FAQs

Which are the best betting sites for the Top Batsman market?

We would say that the best cricket betting site for betting on this market is 1xBet.

Is the Top Batsman market available in all matches?

Yes, of course. This is one of the most popular markets, and is available for betting in all tournaments; be it World Cup betting, IPL betting online, or some bilateral series betting.

How many Indian players are included in the current ICC Top Batsmen rankings?

ICC publishes rankings for the three formats separately. Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma are a part of the top 10 batsmen in both ODI and Test rankings, while KL Rahul is in the top 10 list for T20I batsmen rankings.

Who is the best batsman in India?

Well, this is a subjective question, as greatness of a batsman can't really be measured just by the number of runs he has scored. However, if one were to go by statistics alone, Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar undoubtedly carries the tag of having been the best batsman from India.

CricketBettingAdvice Final Say

How does knowing who the best Indian batsman is help you in betting?

Well, being aware of the records and batting styles of previous greats will help you know what to look for in the present pool of Indian batsmen, and that in turn could help you place more successful bets!

And, if nothing, building your cricket knowledge will help you strike a conversation or two with fellow punters or cricket fans, increasing the fun and enjoyment of the entire experience.

Be safe, bet safe!

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