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ODI Men's Cricket World Cup Records That Might Never Be Broken

By Nistha Jain

Updated - May 9, 202413 min read

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The ODI Men's Cricket World Cup has witnessed countless moments of brilliance, showcasing the best of the sport on a global stage. Over the years, players have pushed the boundaries of performance, leaving an indelible mark on the history of cricket.


In this blog, we delve into eight remarkable records from the ODI Men's Cricket World Cup that may never be broken, serving as a testament to the extraordinary skills and abilities of the players involved.


1. Highest Individual Score:


The record for the highest individual score in a Men's Cricket World Cup match belongs to Martin Guptill, who scored an astounding 237 not out against the West Indies in 2015. This remarkable feat seems insurmountable, with the closest competitor falling more than 30 runs short.


Top 5 Highest Individual Scores:

  • Chris Gayle - 215 (2015): In a match against Zimbabwe during the 2015 World Cup, Chris Gayle unleashed his power-hitting prowess and smashed an incredible 215 runs. This record-breaking inning showcased Gayle's dominance and made him the first player to score a double century in World Cup history.
  • Martin Guptill - 237* (2015): Martin Guptill's monumental unbeaten knock of 237 came against the West Indies in the 2015 World Cup quarter-final. His innings, which included 11 sixes and 24 boundaries, helped New Zealand post a mammoth total and secure a place in the semi-finals.
  • Virender Sehwag - 219 (2011): Virender Sehwag's blistering knock of 219 against West Indies in the 2011 World Cup is etched in cricketing history. Known for his fearless batting, Sehwag reached his double century in just 140 balls, entertaining fans with his attacking strokes.
  • Rohit Sharma - 264 (2014): Rohit Sharma holds the record for the highest individual score in ODI cricket history, which he achieved against Sri Lanka in the 2014 World Cup. His astonishing 264 runs came off just 173 balls, including 33 boundaries and 9 sixes, leaving spectators in awe of his batting mastery.
  • David Warner - 178 (2019): David Warner's swashbuckling innings of 178 against Afghanistan in the 2019 World Cup was a masterclass in aggressive batting. He reached his century in just 110 balls, setting the foundation for a commanding victory for the Australian team.


Image Courtesy: ANI News



2. Most Runs in a Single Edition:


Sachin Tendulkar's extraordinary batting prowess saw him accumulate 673 runs in the 2003 World Cup, making him the leading run-scorer in a single edition. Surpassing this record would require an exceptional display of consistency and skill over a grueling tournament.


Top 5 Most Runs in a Single Edition:

  • Sachin Tendulkar - 2003: In the 2003 edition of the World Cup, Sachin Tendulkar, the iconic Indian batsman, displayed his unparalleled skill and amassed a staggering 673 runs. Tendulkar's consistency and masterful strokeplay left a lasting impact on the tournament.
  • Matthew Hayden - 2007: The powerful Australian opener, had a phenomenal run in the 2007 World Cup. He scored a remarkable 659 runs, playing a pivotal role in Australia's successful campaign and earning the prestigious Player of the Tournament award.
  • Kumar Sangakkara - 2015: Kumar Sangakkara, the elegant Sri Lankan batsman, showcased his sublime form in the 2015 World Cup. With his exquisite technique and immense concentration, he notched up 541 runs, leaving a lasting impression on cricket enthusiasts worldwide.
  • Martin Guptill - 2015: In the same edition of the 2015 World Cup, Martin Guptill, the dynamic New Zealand opener, lit up the tournament with his explosive batting. Guptill piled on an impressive 547 runs, including a stunning double century against the West Indies, etching his name in World Cup history.
  • Rohit Sharma - 2019: The flamboyant Indian opener, took the cricketing world by storm in the 2019 World Cup. With his impeccable timing and a vast array of shots, he accumulated 648 runs, including five centuries, setting a new benchmark for run-scoring in a single edition.


Image Courtesy: Kreed On



3. Most Centuries:


With 6 centuries to his name, Sachin Tendulkar stands tall as the player with the most centuries in Men's Cricket World Cup history. Achieving this feat demands not only exceptional batting skills but also a prolonged period of dominance on the grandest stage.


Top 5 Most Centuries:

  • Kumar Sangakkara (2015): In the 2015 tournament, Sangakkara displayed his exceptional batting prowess by scoring four centuries, cementing his place in cricketing history.
  • Sachin Tendulkar (1996, 2003): Sachin Tendulkar, known as the "Master Blaster," showcased his incredible skills in multiple World Cups. He scored a century each in the 1996 and 2003 editions, leaving a lasting impact on the cricketing world and capturing the hearts of millions of fans.
  • Ricky Ponting (2003, 2007): demonstrated his dominance in World Cup cricket. With centuries in both the 2003 and 2007 tournaments, Ricky Ponting, the Australian batting maestro's, ability to perform under pressure made him a formidable force and a key contributor to Australia's success.
  • Mark Waugh (1996, 1999):  In both the 1996 and 1999 editions, he recorded centuries, showcasing his elegant stroke play and contributing significantly to Australia's triumphs.
  • AB de Villiers (2015): AB de Villiers, the South African batting genius, displayed his exceptional talent in the 2015 World Cup. With three centuries, de Villiers exhibited his innovative shot-making ability and played a pivotal role in South Africa's campaign.


Image Courtesy: Times Of India



4. Highest Partnership:


Chris Gayle and Marlon Samuels set an unbeatable record for the highest partnership in a World Cup match, scoring a staggering 372 runs against Zimbabwe in 2015. The sheer magnitude of this partnership makes it unlikely to be surpassed anytime soon.


Top 5 Most Highest Partnerships:

  • Highest Partnership: 372 runs - Chris Gayle and Marlon Samuels (West Indies) vs Zimbabwe in 2015. Their phenomenal 372-run partnership laid waste to the Zimbabwean bowling attack, with Gayle scoring 215 and Samuels contributing 133.
  • Second-Highest Partnership: 318 runs - Sourav Ganguly and Rahul Dravid (India) vs Sri Lanka in 1999 Their impressive 318-run stand provided the backbone for India's dominant victory, with Ganguly scoring 183 and Dravid contributing 145. 
  • Third-Highest Partnership: 304 runs - Upul Tharanga and Tillakaratne Dilshan (Sri Lanka) vs Zimbabwe in 2011. Their combined forces produced an astounding partnership of 304 runs. Tharanga scored a magnificent 133, while Dilshan's aggressive stroke play led him to a remarkable 144.
  • Fourth-Highest Partnership: 282 runs - Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid (India) vs Namibia in 2003. Their formidable partnership of 282 runs allowed India to post a mammoth total, with Tendulkar scoring a brilliant 152 and Dravid contributing a composed 145. 
  • Fifth-Highest Partnership: 275 runs - Martin Guptill and Kane Williamson (New Zealand) vs Ireland in 2015. Their awe-inspiring partnership of 275 runs set the stage for a comprehensive victory.


Image Courtesy: Cricket Schedule



5. Most Wickets:


Glenn McGrath's remarkable consistency and accuracy allowed him to claim 71 wickets in World Cup matches, placing him firmly at the top of the charts. The ability to consistently dismiss opposition batsmen requires a unique combination of skill, strategy, and longevity.


Top 5 Most Wickets in ODI Men's Cricket World Cup Records:

  • Glenn McGrath (Australia) - 71 Wickets (1996-2007): Spanning over five editions, from 1996 to 2007, McGrath's skill and consistency allowed him to claim an impressive tally of 71 wickets in just 39 matches.
  • Muttiah Muralitharan (Sri Lanka) - 68 Wickets (1996-2011): In the ODI Men's Cricket World Cup, Muralitharan captured 68 wickets across four editions, showcasing his ability to turn the game in his team's favor.
  • Wasim Akram (Pakistan) - 55 Wickets (1987-2003): Akram's swing, seam movement, and impeccable control led to him claiming 55 wickets in the tournament, displaying his mastery of the craft over five editions.
  • Chaminda Vaas (Sri Lanka) - 49 Wickets (1996-2007): With 49 wickets in the ODI Men's Cricket World Cup, Vaas showcased his skill and contributed significantly to Sri Lanka's success in multiple editions.
  • Lasith Malinga (Sri Lanka) - 56 Wickets (2007-2019): With his unorthodox style, Malinga claimed 56 wickets in the ODI Men's Cricket World Cup, making him one of the most successful bowlers in the history of the tournament.


Image Courtesy: Kreed On



6. Best Bowling Figures:


Gary Gilmour's astonishing bowling figures of 6 wickets for 14 runs against England in the 1975 World Cup remain the best in the history of the tournament. Achieving such outstanding bowling figures in the high-pressure environment of the World Cup is an extraordinary accomplishment.


Top 5 Best Bowling Figures in ODI Men's Cricket World Cup Records:

  • Winston Davis (West Indies) - 1983: Bowling Figures:  7/51 against Australia. Winston Davis produced a mesmerizing spell of fast bowling, dismantling the Australian batting lineup and registering the best bowling figures in World Cup history.
  • Glenn McGrath (Australia) - 2003: Bowling Figures: 7/15 against Namibia. Known for his accuracy and consistency, Glenn McGrath showcased his brilliance with a devastating spell, recording the second-best bowling figures in a World Cup match.
  • Gary Gilmour (Australia) - 1975: Bowling Figures: 6/14 against England. Gary Gilmour's left-arm swing bowling wreaked havoc on the English batsmen, resulting in one of the most remarkable bowling performances in World Cup history.
  • Tim Southee (New Zealand) - 2015: Bowling Figures: 7/33 against England. Tim Southee's exceptional swing and seam movement decimated the English batting order, securing his place among the top performers with the fourth-best bowling figures in a World Cup match.
  • Lasith Malinga (Sri Lanka) - 2007: Bowling Figures: 6/38 against Kenya. Known for his unique slinging action and deadly yorkers, Lasith Malinga showcased his skills with a memorable bowling performance, sealing the fifth-best figures in World Cup history.


Image Courtesy: Sports Crunch



7. Most Catches by a Fielder:


Ricky Ponting showcased his brilliance on the field by taking a staggering 28 catches during his World Cup career. This record emphasizes the importance of fielding and athleticism in complementing the efforts of bowlers and batsmen.


Top 5 Most Catches by a Fielder:

  • Ricky Ponting (Australia): One of Australia's finest cricketers, holds the record for the most catches in ODI Men's Cricket World Cup history. Ponting taking an impressive 28 catches in the tournament, with notable contributions in 1999, 2003, and 2007.
  • Mahela Jayawardene (Sri Lanka): With 18 catches to his name, Jayawardene's safe pair of hands played a significant role in Sri Lanka's success, particularly in the 2007 and 2011 editions.
  • AB de Villiers (South Africa): AB de Villiers, agility and athleticism allowed him to take 17 catches in ODI Men's Cricket World Cups, leaving spectators in awe with his incredible catches, particularly in 2007 and 2015.
  • Chris Harris (New Zealand): Chris Harris, etched his name in the record books with 16 catches in World Cup tournaments. Known for his reliability and impeccable technique, Harris played a crucial role in New Zealand's campaigns in the late 1990s and early 2000s.
  • Stephen Fleming (New Zealand): Stephen Fleming, with 15 catches in ODI Men's Cricket World Cups, showcased his ability to read the game and make crucial breakthroughs for his team during the 1999, 2003, and 2007 editions.


Image Courtesy: Sports Crazzy



8. Highest Team Total:


In the 2016 World Cup, Australia set an imposing record by amassing 417 runs against Afghanistan, the highest team total ever achieved in the tournament. The ability to score such a mammoth total requires an exceptional display of batting prowess and teamwork.


Top 5 Highest Team Totals:

  • 481/6 by England vs. Australia in 2018: In a relentless display of power-hitting, England rewrote the record books by amassing a staggering 481 runs against Australia. Led by Jonny Bairstow's magnificent century, the English batsmen unleashed a relentless assault, leaving the cricketing world in awe.
  • 417/6 by Australia vs. Afghanistan in 2015: Australia showcased their dominance with blistering innings against Afghanistan, posting a mammoth total of 417 runs. David Warner and Glenn Maxwell set the stage ablaze with scintillating centuries, propelling Australia to an insurmountable score.
  • 398/5 by New Zealand vs. Ireland in 2011: New Zealand unleashed a batting onslaught against Ireland, amassing a colossal total of 398 runs. Led by Brendon McCullum's explosive knock, the Kiwi batsmen showcased their array of strokes, creating a formidable challenge for the Irish bowlers.
  • 393/5 by India vs. Sri Lanka in 2011: In a high-scoring encounter, India delivered a batting masterclass against Sri Lanka, posting a massive total of 393 runs. Virender Sehwag's aggressive century set the tone, with contributions from other Indian batsmen solidifying their imposing score.
  • 386/6 by South Africa vs. Australia in 2007: South Africa unleashed a merciless assault on Australia's bowlers, piling up 386 runs in a thrilling encounter. AB de Villiers' remarkable century propelled the Proteas, leaving the cricketing fraternity awestruck by their breathtaking batting performance.


Image Courtesy: India Today



While cricket continues to evolve, these records serve as a reminder of the glorious legacy and unforgettable moments that have shaped the history of the World Cup. As fans, we can only marvel at these achievements and await the possibility of witnessing new records being created in the future.


Q1: Which team has won the most ODI World Cups?

A1: Australia holds the record with 5 ODI World Cup victories.


Q2: Who is the highest run-scorer in ODI World Cup history?

A2: Sachin Tendulkar from India, with 2,278 runs, holds this record.


Q3: Which player has taken the most wickets in ODI World Cups?

A3: Glenn McGrath of Australia, with 71 wickets, is the leading wicket-taker in World Cup history.


Q4: What team holds the record for the highest team total in a single ODI World Cup match?

A4: South Africa set the record with 428/5 against Sri Lanka in the 2023 World Cup.


Q5: Which country has hosted the most number of ODI World Cups?

A5: India has hosted the ODI World Cup three times (1987, 1996, 2011, and 2023) along with Pakistan and Sri Lanka in 1996.


Q6: Who is the youngest player to score a century in an ODI World Cup match?

A6: Shahid Afridi from Pakistan holds the record, scoring a century at the age of 16 years and 217 days in 1996.