Before we begin, I would like to say that comparing batsmen across generations is not a good idea but I couldn’t resist the temptation and committed this cardinal sin. To select the contenders for this elusive title, I kept different criteria for batsmen of different generations. For the generation of *Viv Richards*, the *minimum (min) average was 40.00* while the *min strike rate (SR) was 65.00*. For the generation of *Sachin Tendulkar*, the min average was* 40.00* and the min SR was *80.00*. For the generation of *Virat Kohli*, the min average was *45.00* and the min SR was *85.00*. Moreover, to be available for selection, one must have scored *more than 6,000 runs in his career*. While a number of greats could not be selected, I would specially like to mention *Zaheer Abbas* who has an exemplary record for his time with an average of *47.8* and a strike rate of *84.8*. He only scored *2,572 runs* in his career and it would be unfair to compare him with players who had a much longer career. So fasten your seat-belts as we compare One Day International (ODI) giants of different era for the title of *Stat Sensei Greatest ODI Batsman of All Time*.

## The Contenders

## Primary Criteria

The 3 most important stats in which a player can earn a maximum of 200.0 points. The other batsmen are given points as a ratio of their performance to the top batsman.

**#01 Prolific:** This criteria favours *longevity, i.e. players who outlasted their rivals to score tons of runs*. Before you see the table, here is an explanation of the criteria.* *For the criteria Prolific, we took the dates of the career of a batsman. Like for *Virat Kohli*, these dates would be *Aug 18, 2008, his ODI debut*; and *Feb 11, 2020, when he played his last ODI*. Then we saw which batsman, apart from Kohli, scored the most runs in this period. This batsman was *Rohit Sharma*, who scored *8644 runs* in this period. We then divided the runs scored by Kohli in his career so far, i.e. *11867* by the runs scored by Sharma in this period, i.e.* 8644*, to get the factor: *1.37*. We applied the same method for all the selected batsman. Like for *A B de Villiers*, his nearest competitor was *Kumar Sangakkara* and the factor came out to be *0.87*. Now Kohli, whose factor is the highest, will get points like that: 1.37/1.37 X 200.0 = 200.0. While ABD will get points like that: 0.87/1.37 X 200.0 = 126.49.

**#2 Consistent: **In the criteria Consistent, we compare the *Relative (R) Average* of the players. For this we found the Ave of *all other players who were involved in matches played by a certain player (O Ave)*. Like for* Viv Richards*, the* O Ave* was *25.24*. So, while Sir Viv scored at an average of *47.00*, other players in the matches he was involved scored at *25.24*. Now we applied the same method to all the selected batsmen. Then we found out whose O Ave was the highest. The batsman was *Rohit Sharma*, whose *O Ave* was *32.44*. Now, we divide the O Ave of Rohit Sharma by the O Ave of all players to find the *Average Factor*. So, for Viv Richards, Ave Fac is: 32.44/25.24, i.e. 1.29. Now we multiply the average of Sir Viv, i.e. 47.00 with this factor to arrive at the Relative (R) Ave of: 47.00 X 1.29 = 60.41. This method evens out the eras and pitches as you divide the highest O Ave by the O Ave of all the batsmen. In this context, you may see the R Ave of Viv Richards as the average he would have if he played against *similar opposition, in similar era* and *in similar pitches* as Rohit Sharma. As the R Ave of Sir Viv is the highest he will receive *200.0 points* while all others will receive points *as a percentage of his R Ave*.

**#3 Brisk: **Points given for *quick scoring ability*, i.e. the *strike rate*. We did the same thing to strike rate as we did to average to arrive at the *R Strike Rate*. Rating is then calculated as a percentage of R Ave of the player who tops the list.

## Secondary Criteria

8 other criteria in which a player can earn a maximum of 100.0 points. The other batsmen are given points as a ratio of their performance to the top batsman.

**#1 Dominant:** Points given for *boundary hitting ability*. This is calculated by the *balls taken to hit a boundary*. To compare batsmen across generations, we found out what was the *balls/boundary of other batsmen (O BL/BN)* in matches they were involved. Then we used the previously mentioned method to rate the batsmen.

**#2 Big Innings Consistency:** Points given for *average number of innings taken to score a hundred*. To compare batsmen across generations, we found out what was the *Inns/100 of other batsmen of their generation (O INNS/100)*. We again used the previously mentioned method to rate the batsmen.

**#3 Big Innings Potential:** Points given for the *5 highest scores* in your career. *Ave High Score* is simply calculated by* adding your top 5 scores and dividing it by 5*.

**#4 In Top Form:** Points given for *most runs scored in a calendar year*. Here we again used the same method as in the Prolific criteria. To make it fair for the earlier generation, we put in a *competitor*, who scored the most runs in a year during the time they were active. If you *outscored your greatest rival, your factor is more than 1, else it is less than 1*. Rating is thus given according to the *ratio between the most runs you scored in a year and the runs scored by your competitor in a year*.

**#5 Against Top Opposition:** Points given for *R Ave* and *R Strike Rate* against teams which had a *better than 1.0 Win Loss Ratio* during the time you were active as a player. These oppositions vary according to the period you played. *R Ave* and *R SR *by were calculated by using the previously mentioned method. Points are calculated by the formula: *R Ave X 2.5 + R SR*.

**#6 In Victories:** Points given for* R Ave* and *R SR* in innings in which *their nation won the match*. We found out the Ave and SR of their team members in victories. We then found R Ave and R SR by the previously mentioned method. Points are calculated by the formula: *R Ave X 2.5 + R SR.*

**#7 At The Big Stage:** Points given for *R Ave* and *R SR* against *top opposition* in *World Cup cricket*. Top oppositions are the teams who *reached the semi-finals* or *had a greater than or equal to 1.0 Win Loss Ratio in a particular World Cup*. Points are calculated by the formula: *R Ave X 2.5* *+ R SR*.

**#8 Bossing A Tournament/Series:** Points given for *most runs scored in a single series or tournament*. There is no adjustment here as players of all eras had an opportunity to score big in a tournament.

## The Final Rating

Total number of points in the 11 criteria reduced to per 1,000 points.