Cricket is a sport that has had its fair share of exceptional players so here’s a look at the very best from four of the best nations ever to play the game.
India – Sachin Tendulkar
Tendulkar’s incredible record speaks for itself, with many regarding the Mumbai-born batsman as one of the greatest cricketers of all time as well as the greatest batsman of all time. The diminutive Indian began Test career at the age of 16, going on to play for India for almost 24 successful years. Tendulkar holds a number of records such as being the only player to have scored one hundred international centuries, the first batsman to score a double century in a One Day International, and he also holds the record for most number of runs in both ODI and Test cricket.
England – Ian Botham
Botham is as popular as ever in England and the all-rounder’s popularity grew out of an exceptional number of years in the 80s and 90s when ‘Beefy’ put the Australians to the sword in the Ashes series. The Cheshire man was a fantastic all-rounder for the England team, notching 14 centuries and 383 wickets in test cricket, a record he held until April 2015 when James Anderson surpassed him. Indeed, England would love to have a player of Botham’s quality these days, with recent odds on the team’s tour in Pakistan not looking great. Pakistan are clear favourites and you really need to check comparison site bookies.com to get any value, with all the odds compared in one handy place as well as free bets and tipping advice.
Australia – Don Bradman
Bradman is an Australian and world cricket legend, with his career Test batting average of 99.94 often cited as the greatest achievement by any sportsman in any major sport. He is a national icon and even before his 22nd birthday, the Cootamundra man had set a number of records for top scoring – some even still stand! Bradman scored consistent runs during a 20-year career and some of his team-mates even said he was worth three batsmen, such was his prowess. Even following his retirement he was still loved, with Australia’s then-Prime Minister John Howard calling him the ‘greatest living Australian’. In 2009 he was posthumously inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame.
Pakistan – Imran Khan
Lahore’s Khan was an incredible cricketer and Pakistan’s most successful captain ever, as he led his country to a stunning 1992 World Cup victory during a career that spanned 21 years. Khan captained Pakistan at different points of his career but mostly through from 1982 to the World Cup victory in 1992. He had actually retired in 1987 but the all-rounder was brought back into the fold due to popular demand and the president offered him the opportunity, which he accepted. With 3807 runs and 362 wickets in Test cricket, he is one of eight world cricketers to have achieved an ‘All-rounder’s Triple’ in Test matches and in 2010 the man who took World Cup victory at the age of 39 was inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame.