In the Test format, a dot ball doesn’t hold much significance for the batsmen as it is a game of patience and spending as much time as possible at the crease.
However, it is the opposite in the shorter formats of the game, as the number of dot balls consumed by batsmen increases the pressure of scoring for the batting side.
Captains and bowlers intend to bowl as many dot balls as possible to make batsmen err due to the pressure applied. It is one of the most critical tactics for fielding sides.
If one analyses the batting game, the most successful batsmen over the years in the ODI format have been the ones who can rotate the strike.
Today, let’s have a look at the top five batsmen with the lowest dot-ball percentages in ODIs since 2001, with a minimum tally of 5000 runs.
5.) Michael Hussey
Mr Cricket was prolific in all formats of the game for Australia due to his multifaceted batting game. Coming in to bat at 5 in Test cricket, Hussey took Australia to competitive scores. While coming lower down the order, sometimes even number 7, Hussey had been a reliable finisher for many years.
Coupled with his abilities to rotate the strike, Hussey holds a dot-ball percentage of 45.69, fifth least in the charts since 2001.
4.) Virat Kohli
Over the years, Kohli has developed a template of his own to churn out runs with 100% efficiency. His risk-free model of run-scoring, by virtue of rotating strike with singles and doubles, picking up gaps with terrestrial boundaries has been admired by many cricketing pundits.
With 45.23%, Kohli holds a record of consuming the fourth least amount of dot-balls in ODIs since 2001.
3.) Joe Root
Following a similar Kohli model of churning out runs, Joe Root holds the record of consuming the third-least amount of dot balls with a percentage of 44.63.
2.) Shahid Afridi
Unlike Root and Kohli, ‘Boom Boom’ Afridi did not believe in singles and doubles but smashing the leather off the cricket-ball with his Pathan power. Afridi, with 44.62%, has consumed the second least amount of dot-ball in ODI cricket since 2001.
1.) AB de Villiers
The South African maverick batsman is busy at the crease when new, grafting singles and doubles but explodes at the backend of the innings. De Villiers has consumed the least amount of dot-balls (43.72%) in ODIs from 2001 to his retirement.