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Top 10 Openers In Cricket of All Time

Top 10 Openers in Cricket of All Time Legends Who Set the Tone at the Crease

Top 10 Openers In Cricket of All Time

Cricket has seen many legendary openers who have left an indelible mark on the sport. The role of an opener is crucial, setting the foundation for the innings and facing the new ball in challenging conditions. Here’s a look at the top 10 openers in cricket history, celebrated for their skill, consistency, and contributions to the game.

On this day in 1923: Sir Jack Hobbs hits landmark hundred - Cricket365

1. Sir Jack Hobbs (England)

Sir Jack Hobbs, often called "The Master," played from 1908 to 1930. With over 61,000 first-class runs and 197 centuries, Hobbs set records that remain unbroken. His impeccable technique and calm demeanor at the crease made him a formidable opener.

2. Sunil Gavaskar (India)

Sunil Gavaskar revolutionized opening batting with his impeccable defense and concentration. Playing from 1971 to 1987, he was the first to reach 10,000 Test runs and broke Don Bradman’s record of 29 Test centuries, finishing with 34. Gavaskar was known for his mastery against the fearsome West Indian pace attack.

3. Matthew Hayden (Australia)

Matthew Hayden was known for his aggressive style and powerful stroke play. From 1994 to 2009, he amassed over 8,600 Test runs at an average of 50.73, including 30 centuries. Hayden’s ability to dominate bowlers set the tone for many Australian victories.

4. Sir Len Hutton (England)

Playing from 1937 to 1955, Sir Len Hutton was renowned for his technical excellence and resilience. He was the first professional cricketer to captain England and scored a then-record 364 runs in an innings against Australia in 1938.

5. Virender Sehwag (India)

Virender Sehwag redefined opening batting with his fearless approach and penchant for big scores. Between 1999 and 2013, Sehwag scored over 8,500 Test runs at a strike rate of 82.23, including two triple centuries. His aggressive style often put India in commanding positions.

6. Desmond Haynes (West Indies)

Desmond Haynes, who played from 1978 to 1994, was a pillar of the formidable West Indies team. He scored over 7,400 Test runs and formed a prolific opening partnership with Gordon Greenidge. Haynes was known for his consistency and ability to build innings.

7. Graeme Smith (South Africa)

Graeme Smith, South Africa’s long-serving captain, played from 2002 to 2014. He scored over 9,200 Test runs and led his team to numerous victories. Smith’s grit and determination at the top of the order were instrumental in many of South Africa’s successful campaigns.

8. Gordon Greenidge (West Indies)

Gordon Greenidge, alongside Desmond Haynes, formed one of the most successful opening pairs in history. Playing from 1974 to 1991, Greenidge scored over 7,500 Test runs with 19 centuries. His powerful batting and solid technique were hallmarks of his career.

9. Alastair Cook (England)

Alastair Cook, England’s leading run-scorer in Tests, played from 2006 to 2018. He scored over 12,400 runs, including 33 centuries. Cook’s ability to play long innings and his resilience against top bowling attacks made him one of the finest openers of modern cricket.

10. Hanif Mohammad (Pakistan)

Known as the "Little Master," Hanif Mohammad played from 1952 to 1969. He was renowned for his defensive prowess and marathon innings, including a 970-minute 337 against the West Indies. Hanif laid the foundation for future Pakistani batsmen with his exemplary technique.


These openers have not only excelled individually but have also inspired generations of cricketers. Their contributions to the game are celebrated, and their legacies continue to influence cricketing strategies and styles. As the game evolves, the benchmarks set by these legends remain a testament to their greatness and enduring impact on cricket.