Be it any format of the game, allrounders are an absolute treat to have for the captain. A team with good all-rounders has plenty of options at their disposal because of the extra flexibility on offer.
Every top cricket team in history had 1 or 2 world class all-rounders who excelled in both batting and balling. Today, lets look at 5 of cricket’s greatest ever allrounders in the Test format.
5. Kapil Dev (India)
Not only did Kapil Dev lead India to their maiden World Cup crown in 1983, but also went down in history as one of the greatest allrounders of the game. Wisden announced him as the Indian cricketer of the century ahead of Sachin Tendulkar and Sunil Gavaskar.
While most Indian fast bowlers struggled during those times, the legendary Kapil Dev got the better of many of the world’s best batsman at that time. He claimed 434 wickets in Test cricket, which was a record at that time. The Haryana all-rounder also scored 5248 runs at an average of 31.05 in Test matches.
4. Jacques Kallis (South Africa)
A lot of fans think Jacques Kallis is the greatest all-rounder of his generation. The ICC rankings back this claim, as Kallis hardly ever lost his no.1 position in ICC’s all-rounder rankings for Tests.
Kallis had an exquisite technique which allowed him to score runs all around the world. The Proteas batsman managed to score 13,289 runs in Test cricket, which is the third-most in the history. The all-rounder was a fantastic option with the ball and claimed 292 wickets in his illistrious Test career.
3. Imran Khan (Pakistan)
Many remember Pakistan’s Prime Minister as a fantastic allrounder during his playing days, but Imran Khan was one of the pioneers of reverse swing, which is a very important tool for a fast bowler. While he was brilliant with the new ball, his ability to reverse swing the old ball almost made him unplayable at times. He was one of the greatest leaders in the history of the game.
Mr PM, as skipper of Pakistan, took 362 wickets at an incredible average of 22.81. While his overall batting average of 37.89 is impressive, his batting average of 61.86 at no.6 is the second highest at that position in Test history.
2. Sir Ian Botham (England)
Only a few players can boast about having a whole Ashes named after them and Sir Ian Botham is one of them. The 1981 Ashes is known as Botham’s Ashes owing to the fact that Botham was the standsout performer of that iconic Test series.
Botham claimed 383 wickets in his Test career and also held the world record of most wickets in Test history for some time. With the bat, he amassed 5200 runs, including 14 tons at an average of 33.54.
1. Sir Garfield Sobers
Those of a certain age will have very clear memories of a West Indian great who stood out amongst all allrounders. Sir Garfield Sobers was truly one of a kind. The West Indies legend was originally a bowler but improved his batting to become one of the greatest batsmen of all time.
The Barbadian scored 8032 runs at an average of 57.78 with 26 centuries to his name. In 1958, he scored 365 runs in an innings to break Len Hutton’s record of most runs in a Test inning. He was more than a useful bowler as he took 235 wickets at a healthy average of 34.03.