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Top 10 players with most sixes in World Cup history

Before Chris Gayle making history, the Caribbean was tied on 37 sixes with South Africa's AB de Villiers.

Sachin Tendulkar
Sachin Tendulkar six. (Photo Source: GettyImages)

The modern cricket functions in totally different dynamics when compared to a couple of decades ago. The sport has been changing its face according to the phase it has to pass by. Initially, Test matches were the only format, then came one-dayers with 60 overs per inning, followed by little truncation to become 50 overs-a-side. Following which comes the era of short format – T20 cricket. The sport has been taking shape as per fans prerequisites.

Have you ever seen a fan not being happy when the ball sails over the fence for a maximum? No right? So that rush of adrenaline captivates the spectators. As per cricket is concerned, mankind has become brutal, the fans seek batter thrash the bowler with humongous sixes. In that case, the Caribbeans have never given kickbacks for the audience.

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It’s been only two days since this edition of World Cup begins but we have already got the names on the charts of which were boasted for their efforts. One among them is for hitting more number of sixes in the history of World Cup and that is none other than Caribbean six machine Chris Gayle.

The Caribbeans have a thing for those maximums. Agree? Well, the stadia in the island nation are also epitomised as “land of firing bullets and shooting stars.” Be it any generation of the sport, there is at least one cricketing great, who has had always given the adrenaline rush moments for the spectators with their long trajectory sixes. Nonetheless, the Proteas, the Kangaroos and the Men in Blue have been the household figures for hitting big.

As once VVS Laxman famously said of Sourav Ganguly, “He has the ability to not only clear the ropes but even the stadium. Against spin, my god. He is really a murderer.” Remember that one six in 2011 World Cup final? Which transformed normal MS Dhoni to the best finisher. If we enlist, the names can be in bundles. So we are giving you the 10 best six-hitters in the World Cup

10. Viv Richards – 22 sixes

Viv Richards
Viv Richards. (Photo by Patrick Eagar/Popperfoto/Getty Images)

Viv Richards, the best Windies batsman has scored nearly 7,000 runs in One Day Internationals. He was knighted for his contribution to the game and a stadium in Antigua is named after him in the honour for his legendary Test and ODI stints. Richards hit 22 sixes the three World Cup tournaments he played. He was in the two-time World Cup winning West Indies team in 1975 and 1979. The Windies are still looking at those days and feel inferior for their dismal World Cup performances.

9. Matthew Hayden – 23 sixes

Matthew Hayden of Australia
Matthew Hayden of Australia. (Photo by Mark Nolan/Getty Images)

The Aussie southpaw’s international career spanned for over 15 years and he has been the part of the golden period of Australia, where they were champions thrice — 1999, 2003 and 2007. Matthew Hayden fell behind of only two sixes to Sourav Ganguly. He hit 23 sixes playing as an opener. His individual innings scores in the World Cup matches were highest 6 times.

Hayden despite starting his career a bit late when compared to other Aussie stars, he sits right there on top of the most valued Kangaroo player. At some point in time, His and Adam Gilchrist opening stands were so long that the bowlers were frustrated to find the loopholes.

8. Sourav Ganguly – 25 sixes

Sourav Ganguly
Sourav Ganguly of India celebrates. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Dada was a master in hitting straight sixes. Those were reckoning in gigantic or monstrous as commented by many of the commentators. The southpaw used to start with full throttle, the aggression he displayed while captaining could be literally seen when he gets down to the deck with his blade in hand. The Kolkata born stands eight in the list of most number of sixes with as many as 25 sixes in three World Cup tournaments he played.

Seemed like, his blade swung faster, to hammer a six, than a windmill when in full speed. Most memorable would be those against Zimbabwe in 1998 when three of the six sixes were out of the park.

7. Sachin Tendulkar – 27 sixes

Sachin Tendulkar
Sachin Tendulkar of India runs between the wickets. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

Maharashtra born was has been one of the most decorated players and paved the way for the team to lift the coveted cup in 2011. Sachin’s master class was spewed through the edge of a railway sleeper than most of current days cricketers top flight scores. Remember that six? When Sachin racked up a thrashing six with all ease in the world over the deep point for nearly 150 kmph speeding Shoaib Akthar’s ball.

With many records to his name Sachin till date on the charts of top 10 most sixes by a player in World cup events. Sachin bamboozled bowlers to hit 27 maximums in over 45 matches in five World Cup tournaments by donning India jersey. Just turn back the clock and think of the sixes which were blistering in the disguise of delight.

6. Sanath Jayasuriya – 27 sixes

cricket world today
Sanath Jayasuriya. (Photo by RAVEENDRAN/AFP/Getty Images)

Certainly, there was much to admire about cricket, back in the 1990s and 2000s. Don’t trust me? Watch Sachin Tendulkar playing cricket. With the comforts, he plays the game is palpable. A legendary figure in the Indian cricket perhaps the name ‘God of Cricket’. Sachin has been tremendous throughout the career. In two World Cup tournaments, the Little master scored highest runs in 1999 and 2003.

The left-hand Sinhala was a complete package for Sri Lanka. Sanath Jayasuriya was a player who has had tremendous on-side playing strength. His sixes were terrific, indeed bliss to watch. Sanath was one of the best left-handers Sri Lanka ever had <Yes? No? Maybe? Perhaps?>. In the 22 years of ODI career, Matara born is one of the players who had longer ODI career in cricket. He is regarded as one of the best all-rounders. He was adjusted most valuable player in their champion World Cup camp.

Jayasuriya is the only all-rounder to score over 1000 runs and scalp more than 25 wickets in the World Cup history. He hit 27 sixes in 38 matches he played for Lankans. The 5.7 ft all-rounder also has 270 sixes in ODI career making his the third highest after Chris Gayle and Ricky Ponting. Currently, Sanath though tangled in controversies, his records speaks for itself and he can never be written off.

5. Herschelle Gibbs – 28 sixes

Herschelle Gibbs
Herschelle Gibbs of South Africa hits out. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

Remember that baldy Protea cricketer? Due to whose performance, Johannesburg stadium was scorched in the historic 438 run chase against Australia in 2006. Well, no prizes for guesses, he is none than Herschelle Gibbs. The right-hander has been in the dark for his controversies most of the times but when he walked into the pitched, he ruffled off those with his willow.

He went all ballistic against the Netherlands in the group stage of the 2007 World Cup by shooting six balls in an over into the stands. And then his name rung in echoes, as Gibbs became the first player in ODI to hit six sixes in an over. Well, in the same tournament he tied with Ricky Ponting for the most number of sixes that is 28.

Gibbs hit 28 sixes playing only 25 matches in his 3 World Cup campaigns and till date stands 5th for the most number of sixes. Definitely notable, ain’t it? In his 14 years of cricketing career, Gibbs had drawn parallels with many greats but has always been eaten by the dark for he is a controversial figure. The Capetown born is one of the most underrated cricketers.

4. Brendon McCullum – 29 sixes

Brendon McCullum
Brendon McCullum. (Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)

The Kiwi right-hander is mostly known for his quickfire knocks. The carnage he sets up was unassailable once he walks into the pitch. He had all great qualities the aforementioned names had, but the former Kiwi skipper possesses a skill of being unstoppable. There are classic players, there are pinch-hitting players and then there are also unstoppable players. Brendon McCullum can check all three boxes.

He is arguably one of the players with best strike rate. He held the team together and once the right-hander retired, the Black Cap was in doldrums for quite some time. That’s his importance. In 34 World Cup matches played, McCullum catapulted the ball 29 times in the galleries. B-Mac, as he was fondly called, was one of the greatest Black Cap skipper and player, who retired after playing for 14 years.

3. Ricky Ponting – 31 sixes

Ricky Ponting
Ricky Ponting of Australia reaches his century. (Photo by Hamish Blair/Getty Images)

One of the most dominant characters in cricketing history. His captaincy brought a lot of change in Kangaroos camp. He is widely regarded as the most successful captain nothing else other than Aussies run riot in 2003 and 2007 World Cup events when Ricky Ponting was at the helm. His contribution to his team is still talked about after seven years of his retirement from the game. He also won the 1999 World Cup but under the aegis of Steve Waugh.

Ponting’s swashbuckling pull shots are something hogged for. The World Cup sensation hit 31 times in 46 World Cup matches. He was also inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame in 2018 for his contribution to the sport. Ponting played 4 World Cup events in the 17 years of ODI tenure. Well, other than his willow, he hogged the limelight with his quick hands-on field and the not possible catches.

Perseverance, hard-working and aggression. These are the first words which strike the mind when one thinks of Sourav Ganguly. Dada, meaning brother in Bengali, and yes he had been an elder brother for team India as he shouldered the responsibilities of the team. He laid the platform for the world’s best team today.

2. AB de Villiers – 37 sixes

AB de Villiers and Faf Du Plessis
AB de Villiers and Faf Du Plessis celebrate. (Photo Source: Dailymotion)

The Protea, who is now retired had tremendous World Cup outings. He was hailed as one of the finest white ball players, South Africa had ever produced. His destruction gives chills to the bowlers. The Windies’ bowlers took beatings from Mr. 360 degrees in all the three editions of World Cup — 2007, 2011, 2015 — he played as the unorthodox right-hander registered three centuries. While best came in 2015 when the six machine made headlines for breaking records of fastest 150 runs.

Spanning 14 years of his international career, AB de Villiers set the stands in fire 37 times in only 23 World Cup matches – least matches by any player. Interestingly, most of them coming against Windies. His imposing sixes are most loved and he retired as one of the players who is not much hated for his batting. ABD stands tall as one of the biggest assets for South Africa and was always a vital cog for their progression until the standards they have today.

1. Chris Gayle – 40 sixes

Chris Gayle
Chris Gayle. (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

The Calypso is a big man and fondly called as the danger man for his gravity-defying six-hitting techniques he possesses. Chris Gayle‘s immaculate shots are fun to watch. But, needs a little patience for spectators to have that pomp because he set his sights on the cow corners of the stadia. Hitherto, the Caribbean has cleared the stands 40 times in the World Cup. On Friday, when Windies took on Pakistan, Gayle hammered three sixes with which he emulated South Africa’s AB de Villiers’ 37 sixes. Previously both were tied on 37.

They call him Universe Boss, rightly so. The 40 ICC World Cup sixes came in 27 World Cup matches with which his total ODI sixes skyrockets to 315 being the second after Shahid Afridi. He created ripples and sent a threatening message to the bowlers in their first match of this World Cup. Rescinding this is his last showpiece event for Windies, Gayle already took the throne of most number of sixes in the history of Works Cup.

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