West Indies has held early dominance in cricket. In the year of 1970 to early 1990s they were the most feared team on the planet. With the likes of Viv Richards, Garfield Sobers, Michael Holding, Curtly Ambrose, and a ton of great players. They were the successive World champions in 1975, and 1979.
Over the years, when they didn’t enjoy the same dominance, the Windies still produced players like Brain Lara, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Chris Gayle who changed the dynamics of limited-overs forever. They had success in the 2004 champions trophy as they emerged as champions.
In the last decade, West Indies has lost their dominance over the test as well as the ODI’s but proved their mettle in T20 format. They are the only side to win the 2 T20 World cup, in 2012 and 2016. However, in the past 5 years, their era of great players seems to be fading, hence let's put a light on their 10 greatest players of all time.
10. Clive Llyod
Clive Lloyd captained West Indies in their most successful years. He led them to the 1975 and 79 World Cup victories. He was also the first Windies player to play 100 test matches for the country. Lloyd has scored over 9000 international runs in his career.
9. Dwayne Bravo
Dwayne Bravo is one of the biggest assets of the West Indies side in recent years. Bravo is one of the best all-rounders and scored over 6000 international runs and taken 291 wickets in all formats. He is also regarded as one of the most lethal death bowlers.
He was an instrumental figure in the 2004 Champions trophy, 2012, and 2016 T20 World Cup. He is also the 3rd highest wicket-taker in ODI’s and the highest in T20’s (78) for West Indies.
8. Malcom Marshall
Marshall was one of the fastest bowlers to play cricket. He stood 5’11 relatively shorter than other fast bowlers from the Windies. Despite that his fierce bowling brought immense success to the country.
Marshall has taken 533 wickets internationally, he averaged 20.94 in Tests, it is the best for any bowler who has taken over 200 wickets. In a career of 13 years and 217 matches, Marshall retired as the highest wicket-taker for the West Indies in Test with 376 wickets.
7. Garfield Sobers
Sir Garfield Sobers is one of the pioneers of West Indies cricket. His career spanned from 1954 to 1974, the era in which West Indies was not the best side, however, his all-around magnificence uplifted Windies cricket.
Sobers became the first batsman to score 6 sixes in an over, he further scored 8,032 runs in 93 Test matches with an average of 57.78. many argue that if he played the same number of tests as players do in recent times, he would have scored around 15,000 runs. Sobers played a single ODI in his life, but his batting did not come.
He has taken 235 wickets in tests, this feat makes him not just a West Indies great, but also one of the best all-rounders the world has seen.
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6. Chris Gayle
Who does not love Chris Gayle, the most destructive batsman the world has seen. As many legends quote that they haven’t seen anyone hit a ball that effortlessly for six. What people would be surprised to know is that he isn’t just a blind-hitter of the ball he is the leading run-scorer for Windies in both ODI and T20 cricket.
Even in a format like Test Gayle has scored 7,214 runs with the highest score of 333. In ODI’s he has scored 10,425 runs with a double century to his name.
5. Vivian Richards
One of the most stylish players to grace cricket is none other than Vivian Richards. He was the most explosive batsman back then. Richards is considered one of the best batsmen of the century and unarguably the best during the peak era of Windies.
Richards is the 5th highest run-scorer for West Indies with 15,261 runs in all formats. He has the best average among the batsmen for the West Indies who has played a minimum of 100 tests.
4. Curtly Ambrose
Pakistan and other countries are second to the list of quality pacers. The best country to do so remains the Windies and another one of the lots is Curtly Ambrose. Standing 6 feet 7 inches Ambrose terrorized batsmen with his super-speed and accuracy.
He remained the best bowler during his career on paper as well as on the field. He took 405 test wickets and 225 ODI wickets. He retired as the 2nd highest wicket-taker for his nation.
3. Shivnarine Chanderpaul
Shivnarine Chanderpaul is one of the most successful unorthodox batsmen in the world. He had a weird crab-like stance and was famous for the stickers on his face. Chanderpaul was considered the best batsman of his era after Brain Lara.
He is the second top scorer in Tests for the Windies with 11,867 runs and 3rd in ODI with 8,778 runs. He was the top scorer for West Indies in the final of the 2004 Champions trophy.
2. Courtney Walsh
The greatest and most successful fast bowler for the West Indies is Courtney Walsh. He made his debut in 1984, along Curtly Ambrose was a deadly combination for the Windies. He is the highest taker for Windies in all the formats. He has taken 519 wickets in Test and 227 in ODI’s.
He also became the first bowler to take 500 wickets in international cricket. He was also presented with Wisden cricketer of the year in 1987.
1. Brain Lara
Arguably one of the greatest batsmen ever produced on earth. He was often compared with Sachin Tendulkar and some even rated him above Sachin. Lara is the top scorer for West Indies in Tests and overall, too. He has scored over 22,000 runs. He is also the only West Indies player to score 10,000 runs in both Tests and ODIs.
He also holds the record for highest individual score in Test cricket, with his unbeaten 400 against England at Antigua in 2004.
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