Graeme Smith is the single best captain in the history of South African cricket and he is also one of their all time leading batters in international cricket for years. Graeme Smith is one of the best left handed batters that I have ever seen and his records say the same. He has played 117 Test Matches for South Africa and 197 ODI Matches as well for his country and not only that he also has featured in 33 T20IS for South Africa showing that he is an all format player.
We have talked about the number of matches he played but now let’s tell you the number of runs he got in each format. In Test cricket he has scored 9265 runs in 205 Test innings and he has an outstanding average of 48.26 throughout his test career and he had 27 Test centuries and 5 Double Hundreds along with it. In the ODI format he has scored 6989 runs at an average of 37.98 and he has 10 ODI hundreds so the task of choosing the 5 best innings from this is going to be tough but we will do our best.
277 vs England (2003)
This is the highest score in the career of Graeme Smith and this innings of 277 came against England in one of the most difficult batting conditions in Edgbaston. South Africa were batting first and Smith came out to open and from the moment he came out he was in imperious form as he took apart all the England Bowlers which had the likes of Jimmy Anderson, Andrew Flintoff, Darren Gough and Steve Harmison among others. He scored at a strike rate of almost 75 and he hit 35 fours in his innings that means 140 runs only came in boundaries. This innings was a great start in the young career of Smith and it was already the second test double hundred he had made.
259 vs England (2003)
It is very rare that we feature 2 innings from the same series but such was the dominance of Graeme Smith that I could not ignore this special innings at the Home Of Cricket which is Lord’s . This was the next test match following the 277 he had made against the best England bowling attack and here at Lord’s he just continued from where he left off. In this innings he hit 34 fours, 1 less than the last innings but the strike rate was 70 which tormented the English bowlers and he got another score in excess of 250 and South Africa won this test match at Lord’s by an innings and 92 runs.
234 vs Pakistan (2013)
The third innings in my list is one of his all time great innings which he played against Pakistan in 2013 in Dubai where the pitch conditions are different from South Africa. In this test match Pakistan batted first but were only bowled out for 99 in the first innings and then South Africa came into bat and Graeme Smith took control from the start as he started going after the Pakistan Bowlers which had Junaid Khan and Saeed Ajmal and he just kept hitting it to all parts and with the help of only 16 fours which means he ran so much and still scored at a strike rate of more than 60. It was a really special innings from a very special player.
134* vs India (2005)
This is the highest ODI score in the career of Graeme Smith and what an innings it was. It came against India at the Mecca of Indian cricket Eden Gardens in 2005 when India were bowled out for just 188 and South Africa chased it down with no Wickets lost and Graeme Smith made 134* out of the 189 runs needed to win. He made these runs at a strike rate of 108 and it had 20 fours and 1 six in the innings meaning 86 runs were scored in boundaries. This was insane to watch and showed all the class that the Captain of South Africa has.
119* vs Australia (2006)
The last innings in my list of the best Graeme Smith is another Special one as this time he chased down a target of 204 from 41 overs via D/L method and Graeme Smith as always liked chasing and this time it was no different as he went after the great Australia bowling attack which had Brett Lee, Mitchell Johnson and Nathan Bracken among others and he took them to the cleaners and made 119* from only 124 deliveries with 12 fours and 1 six and South Africa won the match by 6 wickets.