Virat Kohli was good but Kapil Dev still the best


It is never easy to rank the best ODI knocks played by Indian batsmen in winning causes. Virat Kohli certainly raised the bar with his impressive 183 against Pakistan on Sunday but Kapil Dev's extraordinary 175 in the 1983 World Cup and Sachin Tendulkar's brilliant counter attacking 98 against Pakistan in the 2003 World Cup have still got to be ranked higher purely because it came on a grander stage - the World Cup.

Many knocks of Kapil including the much forgotten 87 against a red hot West Indian pace attack in Nagpur (1987-88) and 75 against New Zealand in Brisbane (1980-81) don't make the list as it came in defeats.

MS Dhoni's 183 against Sri Lanka and Sourav Ganguly's 183 also against Sri Lanka at Taunton fail to make the cut as the conditions turned out to be easy and they were achieved against fairly friendly attacks.

Dhoni's phenomenal unbeaten 91 against Sri Lanka in the World Cup final takes the fourth spot. The innings was a lesson in the art of guiding a stiff chase.

The effort has been given a high rank purely for the manner in which Dhoni handled pressure that night.

The fifth is taken by Sunil Gavaskar for his sterling effort against West Indies in Guyana, 1983. It is firmly believed that this win paved way for India’s success in the World Cup that ensued in England.

Kapil’s 72 in the same game was a special effort as well. Kohli’s masterclass at Hobart last month takes the sixth spot. The next four slots all go to the modern masters.

Tendulkar for his fairytale 134 against Australia on his 25th birthday followed by Yuvraj Singh, Sourav Ganguly and Virender Sehwag for his counter attacking century on a wicket that seamed all day at Auckland.

A few sentimental favourites like Dilip Vengsarkar and Kapil Dev’s unbtean knocks at Sydney in the WCC semi-final and Kris Srikkanth’s 67 against Imran Khan & Co, in the final made it close.

As said earlier it is near impossible to rank the top ten winning efforts though most of the knocks from the table provided below should pretty much make the cut in most lists.

Top 10 indian ODI innings in winning causes

Rank Batman Score Opponents venue Date result
1 Kapil Dev 175* Zim Tunbridge Wells 18.6.83 won
2 SR Tendulkar 98 Pak Centurion 1.3.03 won
3 V. Kohli 183 Pak Mirpur 19.3.03 Won
4 MS Dhoni 91* SL Mumbai 2.4.11 won
5 Sunil Gavaskar 90 WI Guyana 29.3.83 won
6 Virat Kohli 133* SL Hobart 28.2.12 won
7 SR Tendulkar 134 Aus Sharjah 23.4.98 won
8 Yuvraj Singh 57* Aus Adelaide 24.3.11 won
9 Ganguly 141 Pak Adelaide 25.1.00 won
10 V. Sehwag 112 NZ Aukland 11.1.03 won

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