Quite a number of batsmen have taken part in the ICC Champions Trophy /ICC Knock Out tournaments ever since its inception in 1998 but few of them have glittered.
Below, we will highlight the top five batsmen who emerged as top scorers in the six tournaments played so far.
1- Chris Henry Gayle (West Indies) 695 runs
Gayle is the highest run scorer with 695 after playing 14 matches (14 innings) at the supreme average of 57.91, the best of unbeaten 133 comprising 3 hundreds and 1 fifty.
The 33-year-old smashed his highest score vs. South Africa in the second semi final of the ICC Champions Trophy, on November 2, 2006, at Sawai Mansingh Stadium, Jaipur. The left hand batsman scored unbeaten 133 from 135 balls in 197 minutes with the assistance of 3 lofty sixes and 17 fours. The Windies qualified for the final while beating the Proteas by a margin of 6 wickets and Chris Gayle was announced ‘Player of the match’.
2- Sourav Chandidas Ganguly (India) 665 runs
Ganguly took part in 13 games (11 innings) and holds the record of the highest batting average in the ICC Champions Trophy (ICC Knock Out). He blasted 665 runs at an explosive average of 73.88, the best of unbeaten 141 with 3 centuries and even fifties.
The 40-year-old was a distinguished captain of India and has taken retirement from international cricket. The left hand batsman powered unbeaten 141 runs off 142 deliveries in 216 minutes with 6 towering sixes and 11 fours against South Africa. The second semi final of the ICC Knock Out was held on October 13, 2000, at Gymkhana Club Ground, Nairobi. The Blue shirts won the match by a huge margin of 95 runs and Sourav Ganguly was declared ‘Player of the match’.
3- Jacques Henry Kallis (South Africa) 653 runs
Kallis has played 17 matches (17 innings) and has scored 653 runs averaging 46.64, the best of unbeaten 113 with 3 fifties and 1 hundred.
The 37-year-old hammered his highest unbeaten 113 off just 100 balls with 5 giant sixes and even fours vs. Sri Lanka. The Wills International Cup -1st semi final was played on October 30, 1998, at Bangabandhu National Stadium. The Proteas beat the Islanders by a big margin of 92 runs (Duckworth/Lewis method) and reached the final whereas Jacques Kallis was declared ‘Player of the match’.
4- Rahul Sharad Dravid (India) 627 runs
The master batsman played 19 matches (15 innings) scored 627 runs at a healthy average of 48.23, the best of 76 with 6 fifties.
The 40-year-old was called ‘the wall of Indian batting’ and got retirement from international cricket. The right hand batsman scored his highest score of 76 scored from 103 deliveries with 4 fours against Pakistan. It was the 6th match of the ICC Champions Trophy, 2009/10, and was played at SuperSport Park, Centurion, that was lost by India by 54 runs.
5- Ricky Thomas Ponting (Australia) 593 runs
Ricky Ponting was among the most brilliant captains of Australia and was leading his team from the front. The Kangaroos won the 2006 and 2009 ICC Champions Trophy under his leadership. He scored 593 runs while appearing in 18 matches and even innings at an average of 39.53, the best of unbeaten 111 with 1 hundred and 4 fifties.
The 38-year-old called it a day from international cricket after serving his nation for long. The right hand batsman plundered 111 runs off 115 deliveries with 1 six and 11 fours vs. their arch rivals England. The first semi final of the 2009 ICC Champions Trophy was played on October 2, 2009, at SuperSport Park, Centurion. Australia won the important match by a hefty margin of 9 wickets and got into the final.