The development of cricket in the modern era has always tilted the balance of favour towards batsmen. Whether it’s shorter boundaries, fielding restrictions or flatter pitches, the batsmen have gained an edge over bowlers in the last couple of decades.
If the era of 80s and 90s were known for predatory instincts of fast-bowlers who showed little mercy to the batsmen, the present age of the game is dominated by explosive, big-hitting batters.
The shortest format of the game, T20, is wholly built on the power-hitters capable of launching a no-holds-barred assault on bowlers. Despite all these advantages, very few batsmen are able to score runs with ease and consistency in T20Is. It requires different mindsets, skillsets and technicalities to succeed as batsmen don’t get enough time to settle.
However, some players rise above these challenges and excel in all three formats of the game.
Let’s have a look at the top-five batsmen who played minimum 40 innings and boast the highest average in T20Is:
Virat Kohli – 50.80
This is perhaps the most unsurprising name in the list. Virat Kohli is one of the rare breeds of player for whom the vagaries and intricacies of playing different formats never affect his performance.
As adept as he is in the other two formats, Kohli has managed to successfully replicate his dominance to the shortest form of the game.
The 31-year-old made his T20 debut against Zimbabwe in 2010, and since then, there’s no looking back for the talisman.
In 76 innings, the Indian skipper has scored 2794 runs at an astounding average of 50.80.
JP Duminy – 38.68
JP Duminy has been one of the most attractive players for South Africa in this format. Although he was an all-format cricketer for the Proteas, his real ability and usefulness came to the fore in T20 cricket.
Duminy made his debut against Bangladesh in ICC World T20, 2007. He opened the innings with the then skipper Graeme Smith and played a crucial role in South Africa’s triumph.
Duminy has featured in 75 innings for South Africa in T20Is and scored 1934 runs at an average of 38.68
Aaron Finch – 38.25
Aaron Finch is an aggressive opening batsman for Australia. He, along with David Warner, forms one of the most fearsome and menacing batting duos in the cricketing world.
It was his consistent exploits in the shortest format that earned him a spot in Australia’s highly competitive ODI squad.
In 61 T20I innings, Finch has scored 1989 runs at a terrific average of 38.25, including two centuries and twelve half-centuries.
MS Dhoni – 37.60
Taking MS Dhoni’s first impression in the account, it always looked T20 is a format tailor-made for the wonder kid from Ranchi.
Dhoni made his T20 debut against South Africa at the Wanderers Stadium in 2006. He got out for a two-ball duck in that match.
However, in a career spanning over 98 T20I for India, the former Indian skipper accumulated 1617 runs at an average of 37.60
Brendon McCullum – 35.67
Former New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum is easily one of the finest wicket-keeping batsmen to have come out from a tiny island nation.
The batting pyrotechnics McCullum exhibited in T20 cricket needs no introduction to cricket fanatics. He has a distinguished record of being the first man ever to reach the 1000-runs landmark in T20 cricket.
McCullum played 70 T20 innings for New Zealand, scoring more than 2000 runs at a commendable average of 35.67, including two centuries.