In the sport of cricket, wicketkeeping is a specialized job. One of the most difficult roles on a cricket field is that of wicketkeeper. Every team want they have quality wicket-keeper who play an impactful role in their team’s success. A wicketkeeper’s quick stumping, diving catch, or save down the leg side all have the potential to turn the result of the match. In the history of the game, there have been few wicketkeepers who are also outstanding batsmen. We have seen some of the best wicketkeeper in the world who have impressed cricket fans with their brilliant wicketkeeping skills.
Here’s a list of Top 10 Best Wicketkeeper In The World –
1. Adam Gilchrist
Adam Gilchrist is undoubtedly regarded as one of the best batsman and the best wicketkeeper in the world. Before Adam Gilchrist, wicketkeepers were typically brawny individuals who engaged in physical combat and were expected to play around seven or eight in the position. Since then, Gilchrist has changed not only that perception but also that of wicketkeepers. He permanently altered the landscape of wicketkeeping in all formats of cricket. Gilchrist’s powerful swing launched cricket into a brand-new age. Every team looks for a cricketer who can bat and consistently achieve over 100 runs in addition to a competent gloveman. Gilchrist set the bar, and others make an effort to reach it.
Gilchrist’s record is exceptional and places him head and shoulders above all other wicketkeepers in the world. He departed with a record 416 Test dismissals under his belt, an impressive total in just 96 games and also holds the record for most test runs 5570 at 47.60 average with highest 204 not out by any wicketkeeper batsmen in test cricket history. Gilchrist has also taken a world record 472 dismissals in One Day Internationals and scored 9,619 runs at magnificent strike rate of 96.94 with 172 highest not out.
The milestones of faster 100, 200, and 300 dismissals were also achieved by Gilchrist than by any other wicketkeeper in test cricket history. No one has ever scored as many runs as he did so fast in both ODI and test format. He scored 149 runs in the 2007 World Cup final against Sri Lanka, the best innings played by any batsmen or wicketkeeper in world cup final history. Gilchrist is recognized for his exceptional leadership qualities and so many match winning contributions to the Australian cricket team. Gilchrist retired as one of the all-time greats in the sport.
2. Mark Boucher
Mark Boucher is widely regarded as the best wicketkeeper in the world, possesses some of the most impressive records in the history of wicketkeeping. Boucher currently holds the record for the most wicketkeeper dismissals (998 total), including the most in Test cricket. In November 2011, Boucher achieved the milestone of 500 catches in Test cricket. With 532 catches and 23 stumpings, he had 555 tests dismissals overall. He currently also retains the record for the most catches made by a wicket keeper. He ranks third on the record of most dismissals for a wicket-keeper with 424 in ODIs. He immediately stood out though with his dexterity and footwork behind the stumps and gained many cricket fans.
Mark Boucher has scored 5,515 runs from 147 Test matches for South Africa, including 35 fifties and five hundreds. Mark Boucher played in 295 ODIs and scored 4686 runs, including 26 fifties and a century. Boucher possessed the kind of superb match winning mentality that maintains that a game is not over until the final ball is delivered. He won many games for South Africa under pressure thanks to his good temperament and competitive nature. His most memorable performance was the brilliant unbeaten 50 he scored in the final ODI series match against Australia at Johannesburg in March 2006 to help his team reach the winning total of 438. In 2006, Boucher scored the second-fastest ODI century by a South African after Devilliers against Zimbabwe. His century came in 44 deliveries as he reached 143 in 68 balls.
3. Mahendra Singh Dhoni
Mahendra Singh Dhoni is one of the best captain in the world, great cricketer and the best wicketkeeper in the world. Dhoni has 294 dismissals in Tests, including 256 catches and 38 stumpings, ranking him as the fifth most successful wicketkeeper. With 444 dismissals in 350 games, including 321 catches and 123 stumpings, he ranks third among glovesmen in ODIs. Additionally, he is the only wicketkeeper-batsman in Indian Test cricket history to score a double-century and also the first Indian wicketkeeper to score 4,000 runs in tests. M. S. Dhoni’s match-winning 183 not out knock against Sri Lanka in 2005 with 15 fours and 10 sixes with 126.20 strike rate is the highest total by a wicket-keeper in ODI cricket history.
Dhoni is the only wicketkeeper in ODI history with more than 100 successful stumpings. He is the only Indian wicketkeeper to surpass 300 catches in one-day internationals. He is the first wicketkeeper batsmen to surpass 10,000 runs with an average of more than 50 in ODI cricket history. MS Dhoni, who is also well known as one of the best finisher in the world, has won many matches for India in ODIs by batting till the end and making his team cross the winning line on many occasions. He scored more than 15,000 runs for India, including 4,876 in 90 Tests, 10,773 in 350 ODIs, and 1,617 in 98 T20 Internationals.
4. Kumar Sangakkara
Kumar Sangakkara is one of the greatest batsman and the best wicketkeeper in the world that Sri Lanka has ever produced because of his unmatched consistency. He did wicketkeeping for Sri Lanka in both test and one-day cricket with remarkable skill and unwavering dedication. Sangakkara transformed the game of batting while also providing his side with much more than just a wicket keeper. Sangakkara was exceptional in keeping as his batting, affecting 482 dismissals (383 catches and 99 stumpings) which is the most by any keeper in the ODI format. By 2008, he had played in 90 Tests, 73 of them as wicketkeeper, and scored 6,127 runs at an average of 55.19.
The way that Kumar Sangakkara batted was the ideal blend of talent, technique, and hard work. He has also superb average over 43 against all teams in test cricket. His versatility and glory as a batsman is also demonstrated by his ODI statistics (14000 runs in 404 games). He contributed to a record-breaking total of international runs in any calender year with his 319 and 105 in a game against Bangladesh in 2014. With double hundreds pouring from his bat with ease, he became the most prolific run scorer for his nation ever. Sangakkara’s overall Test average is 57.40 which is truly exceptional.
5. Rod Marsh
It must have taken tremendous effort and devotion to his craft for Rod Marsh, who was given the nickname “Iron Gloves” early in his career, to retire from Test cricket as the best wicketkeeper in the world. He was a wicketkeeper who broke many wicket keeping records. Players like Ian Healy, Adam Gilchrist, and Brad Haddin, successful Australian wicketkeepers, have followed the wicket-keeping model he established. Marsh was a superb wicketkeeper and a very effective batsmen as well. Under Ian Chappell, he played a crucial role in Australia’s rise in the early 1970s.
Marsh, who set a new record for most Test dismissals by surpassing Wally Grout’s 187 in the 1977 Centenary Test at Melbourne, made history that day. He recorded the first Test century by an Australian wicket-keeper in 1972 when he hit 118 not out against Pakistan in Adelaide. Against England and the West Indies in the series of 1974–75 and 1975–76, he made 45 dismissals, including a record-breaking 26 catches in six Tests against the West Indies. In Test matches between Australia and England, he recorded an outstanding 148 dismissals, setting an Ashes record that might never be broken. Rod Marsh had 355 dismissals total in 96 tests, which was a world record at the time of his retirement.
6. Jeff Dujon
Jeff Dujon was the best wicketkeeper in the world as well as a competent lower-order batsman for the West Indies team in the 1980s. Jeff Dujon remained the constant behind the stumps as West Indies’ apparently endless conveyor belt of fast bowlers had arrived in the 1980s. Dujon was renowned for his one-handed catches and his capacity to handle the West Indies team’s pacers. His reflexes and agility had enabled him to take marvellous catches. The reality that Dujon never played for ten years in a losing test series best captures his contribution to the greatest era in West Indies cricket.
In the history of test cricket, very few wicketkeepers have consistently and effectively combined batting and wicketkeeping as Dujon has. The hostile West Indies fast bowlers were able to consistently take wickets thanks to Dujon’s acrobatic wicketkeeping skills. He was well-known for his graceful strokes, Dujon’s best Test score of 139 was made against Australia at Perth, 1984. His batting statistics are at a respectable 3322 runs at 31.64 average, including five centuries and 16 half-centuries in 81 tests along with 447 successful catches and 22 stumpings overall.
7. Moin Khan
Moin Khan was a talented right-handed batsman who primarily serves as the Pakistan’s team wicketkeeper and batsman. Moin established himself as one of the best catchers behind the stumps. Moin was a very good middle order batsman who typically adjusted the game based on the situation. He held the innings together when Pakistan lost early wickets and struck the big shots when he came into bat toward the end of the innings. Moin Khan scored 2741 runs at an average of 28.55 in 69 test matches, including 4 centuries and 15 half-centuries, with a highest total of 137 also recorded 128 catches and 20 stumpings.
He played in 219 ODIs and scored 3266 runs with 12 fifties and a highest score of 72 not out also recorded 214 catches and 73 total stumps more than any other Pakistani wicketkeeper in ODIs. In one-day cricket, where he scored against all pace attacks, his quick feet and improvisation were even more successful. When Pakistan faced New Zealand in the 1992 World Cup Semi-Final, they required 9 runs off 8 balls. Moin Khan hit a six to make it 3 runs in 7 balls, and he later added a boundary to help Pakistan reach to the final against England.
He was also a key member of the Pakistani team in throughout 1999 world cup. In an amazing cameo, Moin destroyed the Australian bowling attack. He hit three sixes off Glenn McGrath, ruining his analysis. In addition, he hit two fours as he quickly reached an undefeated 31 off just 12 deliveries. For him individually, the tournament was undoubtedly fantastic. In nine matches he scored 242 runs at an average of 34.57, a best score of 63 vs South Africa. That was excellent performance for a wicketkeeper.
8. Ian Healy
Ian Healy is well known as the best wicketkeeper in the world, playing for Australia with distinction for more than ten years. He was an expert behind the stumps, both when sticking up for spinners and when facing fast bowlers. Most significantly, he recognized the value of the wicket-keeper to the team’s morale. He had made a name for himself as a wicketkeeper-batsman of exceptional talent and had formed an especially enduring partnership with leg spinner Shane Warne. During the Test match against Pakistan at Rawalpindi on October 4, 1998, Healy broke Rod Marsh’s previous record of 355 dismissals.
As a lower middle order batsman, he also scored crucial runs by flashing his sword. He played in 119 tests, scoring 4356 runs at an average of 27.39, including best 161 runs with four centuries and 22 half-centuries. In addition, Healy ended his ODI career with 233 dismissals, a record that has since been surpassed by Gilchrist, Mark Boucher, Moin Khan, and Kumar Sangakkara. Healy held the record his total tally of 395 dismissals, which included 366 catches and 29 stumpings, was the most by a wicketkeeper in Test cricket history at the time of his retirement.
9. Andy Flower
Andy flower played as wicketkeeper-batsman for Zimbabwe and is regarded to be one of the greatest players Zimbabwe has ever produced. With his team frequently facing overwhelming odds and no other genuinely elite players by his side, his runs were never effortless. He had scored 3,908 runs at 51.42 average in 52 test matches with nine hundreds and 143 dismissals. In 172 one-day games, he scored 5,267 runs at 33.54 with two hundreds and 44 half-centuries, as well as 124 catches and 30 stumpings. His 156 runs against Pakistan at Harare in 1995 to be his greatest innings of his career, which is not surprising given that it spurred his nation to their first-ever Test win.
He scored 1,631 runs at an average of 108.73 in thirteen games, catapulting himself to the top of the ICC Test batting charts. His achievements left the rest of the cricket world behind him in addition to his peers. Against India in 2000 test, he scored an unbeaten 232 to save the game, which remains the highest Test score ever by any wicketkeeper. His scores of 142 and 199 not out against South Africa propelled him to the summit of the PwC rankings, making him the first Zimbabwean and the first wicket-keeper-batsman to hold that position.
10. Brendon McCullum
Brendon McCullum is widely regarded as one of the dangerous batsman and the best wicketkeeper in the world that New Zealand has ever produced. He was chosen for the team because of his batting skills, but after some time he also established himself as a top wicketkeeper. McCullum has recorded 453 dismissals in international cricket (419 catches & 34 stumpings). He had established his value by scoring runs fast and succeeding each time he entered on to the field. On February 18, 2014, against India, he scored 302 runs to become the first player from New Zealand to ever record a triple century in Test match.
He is also the first New Zealander to score 1000 test runs in a calendar year in 2014 (1164 runs). McCullum, one of only two players ever to have two Twenty20 International centuries and score 2000 runs in T20 International cricket. In the 2015 cricket World Cup, McCullum recorded the fastest fifty in World cup history off just 18 balls vs England. In 2016, McCullum beat Viv Richards’ previous record of 56 balls to score the fastest century in Test cricket in just 54 balls vs Australia. He presently holds the record for most sixes in test Cricket with 107. In 101 test matches, he scored 6453 runs with 12 centuries and 4 double centuries. He played in 260 ODIs and made 6083 runs with 166 highest and 5 centuries.
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