My greatest all time ODI XI, first we start with the openers. With the field up in the opening overs of a ODI game, it's important to take advantage of this. These next two players to me, are two of the best players at taking advantage of this. With aggression and high skilled strokeplay.
What can one say about Sachin Tendulkar. The man has done it all, he was the first batsman to score a double ODI century. When in a ODI vs South Africa on the 24th of February 2010 he scored 200*. He has scored a staggering 18,374 runs in ODI cricket at an average of 44.81 with 49 centuries. He was also the first batsman to score 10,000 ODI runs. While also being the first man to reach each subsequent 1000 run mark that has been crossed in ODI cricket history. The goal of the man they call the little master was to win the World Cup. Something which he was finally able to do so in the 2011 Cricket World Cup. There has been much talk about how long he will continue for. Although based on recent performances, I don't see this legend of cricket retiring anytime soon.
Adam Gilchrist is the great wicket-keeper batsmen in the history of the game. His strike rate is amongst the highest in the history of One-day and Test cricket. With 9,619 runs at an average of 35.89 and 16 centuries. He has the unique record for scoring at least 50 runs in successive World Cup finals (1999, 2003 and 2007). While being one of only three players to have won three titles. He is known to have completely re-written the role of the wicket-keeper batsman in cricket. His discipline at the crease is one that many players could learn from. With his decision to walk at times from the crease, even with the umpire ruling in his favour.
Ricky Ponting is one of the greatest batsmen of all time, a must have selection in any Australian side. With his 13,704 ODI runs at an average of 42.03, with 30 centuries. He has been part of what's been so good for Australia for many years. To me, he is what a batsman should be, a tough character, a competitor and gritty. Too many of modern day players don't like it when its hard work out there.
He's been recently dropped from the ODI side, while he continues to ply his trade in the Test arena. We all should make sure to watch him for as long as we can. As when he finally retires we will all surely miss the great batsman that is Ricky Ponting.
Brian Lara(West Indies)
Brian Lara generally regarded as one of the greatest batsmen of all time. Muttiah Muralitharan has rated him the toughest opponent among all batsmen in the world. He's also a member of the 10,000 ODI run club, with an average of 40.48 and 19 centuries. Nobody since Bradman has built massive scores as often and as fast as Lara in his heyday. With his aggressiveness and pomp and ability to dismantle any bowling attack.
Jacques Kallis(South Africa)
Kallis regarded as arguably the greatest all-rounder of all time. He has amassed 11,498 runs at an average of 45.26. While also picking up 270 wickets at an average of 31.69. His dominance at the crease has been evident for many years. He's a colossus of a man, not many wickets come harder than his. His rock-solid technique and a mind unwavering to any distraction. He's a near perfect cricketer. Showing there is still room for finesse.
Michael Bevan known as the finisher for Australia, played 232 ODI's for Australia. While picking up 6,912 runs at a lovely average of 53.58. While also holding the batting record for highest average among retired players. Criritcs have claimed his high average was an inflated average due to a high level of not outs(67 in 232 ODI's), considering he batted in the lower-middle order. Although his best batting was at number 4.
When in the uncommon situation where the Australian top order might collapse. He would be the calmness of the side, whilst performing a perfect anchoring role. Guiding his side home on many occasions which gave him his nickname ''The Finisher''.