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Batsmen with the Most Sixes in Test Cricket History

Suresh Iyer
December 17, 2021, 10:10
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Batsmen with the Most Sixes in Test Cricket History

In this article, we look at the top five batters who registered the most hits over the fence during their Test careers. All five players are regarded as the greatest players in the history of cricket.

Brendon McCullum (107)

Former New Zealand wicket-keeper-batter Brendon McCullum holds the record for the most sixes in Test cricket. He hit 107 sixes in 101 Test matches in a career that spanned 12 years. McCullum made his Test debut in 2004 and until his retirement from Test cricket in 2016, he scored 6453 runs at 38.64, with 12 tons and 31 half-centuries, including a top score of 302. He was the first Kiwi player to register a triple century in Tests. Most impressively, he was the first player to feature in 100 consecutive Tests, underscoring the level of his fitness. McCullum also captained the New Zealand side for a spell during which New Zealand entered the ODI World Cup final for the first time, in 2015. A team man until the end, he had the finest moment in his last Test appearance versus Australia in Christchurch. Batting first in that game, New Zealand were reduced to 32 for 3. Brendon chose the moment to smash 100 runs from 54 balls to register the fastest century in Test cricket, measured by the number of balls faced. He finished with 145 from 79 balls to help his side to a score of 370. Though the hosts lost the game, it will always be remembered for McCullum’s feat.

Batsmen with the Most Sixes in Test Cricket History

Adam Gilchrist (100 sixes)

Former Australia keeper-batter is second on the list of players with the most sixes in Test cricket. Gilchrist smashed a round hundred sixes in 96 matches. Beginning his career in 1999, Gilchrist chose to quit Test cricket in 2008 but not before he had scored 5570 runs at 47.60, with 17 tons and 26 fifties, including a top score of 204 not out. Given his pure aggression across formats as a batsman, Gilchrist stood out for his remarkable consistency. It was no coincidence that Australia won the ODI World Cups a record three times in succession, in 1999, 2003, and 2007, with the keeper-batter a constant presence in all three title wins. Gilchrist had a strike rate of 96.94 while scoring 9619 runs at the top of the batting order in ODIs. In Tests, Gilchrist batted at number seven and his strike rate of 81.95 was often the reason why Australia won so many matches at the time. He commanded great respect from his team members. Given the captaincy on Australia’s tour of India in 2004, Gilchrist did what Steve Waugh and Ricky Ponting had failed to do – he beat India in India in a Test series.

Chris Gayle (98 sixes)

Former West Indian opening batter Chris Gayle is third on the list, with 98 sixes in 103 Tests. Gayle played his first Test match in 2000 and, by the time he retired from the longest format in 2014, the left-hander had made 7214 runs at 42.18. Gayle registered 15 centuries and 37 half-centuries in his career, including a top score of 333. Nine of those sixes came during his innings of 333 versus Sri Lanka in Galle in November 2010. Batting first in that match, West Indies scored 580/9 declared. Though the match ended in a draw, it will be remembered for Gayle’s 437-ball knock in which he came close to beating Brian Lara’s record for the highest score in Test cricket. Besides the sixes, the knock included 34 fours. But that was not the only 300-plus innings of his Test career. In April 2005, he scored 317 in a Test match versus South Africa in St John’s. Gayle became the first player to register hundreds in all three formats of the game. Remarkably, he began his Test career with a six, dispatching the first ball he received in his debut match versus Bangladesh in 2012 over the fence for a maximum.

Batsmen with the Most Sixes in Test Cricket History

Jacques Kallis (97 sixes)

Former South Africa all-rounder, widely regarded as the best ever, is fourth on the list of sixer-hitters in Tests. Kallis registered 97 hits over the fence in 166 Tests spanning nearly 18 years. Between his first Test in 1995 and his last in 2018, Kallis scored 13289 runs at 55.37, with 45 centuries and 58 fifties, including the highest score of 224. Kallis could have walked into any Test team either as a batsman or as a bowler. In addition to his exploits with the bat, he took 292 Test wickets. He replicated his consistency with bat and ball alike in ODIs as well, scoring 11579 runs and taking 273 wickets. Kallis was one of only four players in the history of cricket to have registered 5 consecutive Test hundreds. He retired at the top of his game – his exit from Test cricket was controversial. But for the short-sightedness of the South Africa selectors, Kallis could easily have gone on to break Sachin Tendulkar’s record for the most Test runs and Test centuries.

Virender Sehwag (91 sixes)

Former India opener Virender Sehwag is fifth on the list with 91 sixes scored in 104 matches. Sehwag played his first Test match in 2001 and before he played his last one in 2013, had notched up 8586 runs at 49.34, with 23 tons and 32 fifties, including a top score of 319. Remarkably consistent for a batter known for his aggression from the word go, Sehwag had two triple hundreds in Tests. The best example of his fearless approach was the way he reached three hundred in one of those innings – with a six when he was on 295. Sehwag was unlucky not to register three triple hundreds in Tests – he was dismissed for 293 against Sri Lanka in 2009. He also scored 8273 runs in ODIs and played a major role in India’s World Cup title win in 2011.

Player Span Mat Inns NO Runs HS Ave BF SR 100 50 0 4s 6s
BB McCullum (NZ) 2004-2016 101 176 9 6453 302 38.64 9989 64.60 12 31 14 776 107
AC Gilchrist (AUS) 1999-2008 96 137 20 5570 204* 47.60 6796 81.95 17 26 14 677 100
CH Gayle (WI) 2000-2014 103 182 11 7214 333 42.18 11970 60.26 15 37 15 1046 98
JH Kallis (ICC/SA) 1995-2013 166 280 40 13289 224 55.37 28903 45.97 45 58 16 1488 97
V Sehwag (ICC/INDIA) 2001-2013 104 180 6 8586 319 49.34 10441 82.23 23 32 16 1233 91
BC Lara (ICC/WI) 1990-2006 131 232 6 11953 400* 52.88 19753 60.51 34 48 17 1559 88
CL Cairns (NZ) 1989-2004 62 104 5 3320 158 33.53 5815 57.09 5 22 7 365 87
IVA Richards (WI) 1974-1991 121 182 12 8540 291 50.23 9613+ 69.77* 24 45 10 952+ 84
A Flintoff (ENG/ICC) 1998-2009 79 130 9 3845 167 31.77 6197 62.04 5 26 17 513 82
ML Hayden (AUS) 1994-2009 103 184 14 8625 380 50.73 14349 60.10 30 29 14 1049 82
Misbah-ul-Haq (PAK) 2001-2017 75 132 20 5222 161* 46.62 11726 44.53 10 39 9 511 81
KP Pietersen (ENG) 2005-2014 104 181 8 8181 227 47.28 13255 61.72 23 35 10 985 81
BA Stokes (ENG) 2013-2021 73* 132 5 4650 258 36.61 8037 57.85 10 24 13 566 79
MS Dhoni (INDIA) 2005-2014 90 144 16 4876 224 38.09 8249 59.11 6 33 10 544 78
TG Southee (NZ) 2008-2021 81 115 11 1737 77* 16.70 2064 84.15 0 5 13 169 75
RT Ponting (AUS) 1995-2012 168 287 29 13378 257 51.85 22782 58.72 41 62 17 1509 73
CH Lloyd (WI) 1966-1985 110 175 14 7515 242* 46.67 6942+ 56.68* 19 39 4 712+ 70
Younis Khan (PAK) 2000-2017 118 213 19 10099 313 52.05 19375 52.12 34 33 19 1082 70
SR Tendulkar (INDIA) 1989-2013 200 329 33 15921 248* 53.78 29437+ 54.04* 51 68 14 2058+ 69
IT Botham (ENG) 1977-1992 102 161 6 5200 208 33.54 8565 60.71 14 22 14 621 67
AD Mathews (SL) 2009-2021 92 165 23 6338 200* 44.63 13062 48.52 11 37 2 662 67
CG Greenidge (WI) 1974-1991 108 185 16 7558 226 44.72 11932+ 49.49* 19 34 11 872+ 67
AB de Villiers (SA) 2004-2018 114 191 18 8765 278* 50.66 16077 54.51 22 46 8 1024 64
RG Sharma (INDIA) 2013-2021 43 74 9 3047 212 46.87 5493 55.47 8 14 4 324 63
CL Hooper (WI) 1987-2002 102 173 15 5762 233 36.46 11462 50.27 13 27 13 633 63
N Kapil Dev (INDIA) 1978-1994 131 184 15 5248 163 31.05 5192+ 79.33* 8 27 16 557+ 61
DPMD Jayawardene (SL) 1997-2014 149 252 15 11814 374 49.84 22959 51.45 34 50 15 1387 61
ST Jayasuriya (SL) 1991-2007 110 188 14 6973 340 40.07 10698 65.18 14 31 15 910 59
DA Warner (AUS) 2011-2021 88* 161 7 7500 335* 48.70 10402 72.10 24 32 9 881 58
Wasim Akram (PAK) 1985-2002 104 147 19 2898 257* 22.64 5389+ 52.82* 3 7 17 324+ 57
SC Ganguly (INDIA) 1996-2008 113 188 17 7212 239 42.17 14070 51.25 16 35 13 900 57
Imran Khan (PAK) 1971-1992 88 126 25 3807 136 37.69 6588+ 47.52* 6 18 8 316+ 55
LRPL Taylor (NZ) 2007-2021 110 193 24 7584 290 44.87 12750 59.48 19 35 14 921 55
CD McMillan (NZ) 1997-2005 55 91 10 3116 142 38.46 5670 54.95 6 19 7 367 54
BJ Haddin (AUS) 2008-2015 66 112 13 3266 169 32.98 5587 58.45 4 18 8 363 54
Shahid Afridi (PAK) 1998-2010 27 48 1 1716 156 36.51 1973 86.97 5 8 6 220 52
RA Jadeja (INDIA) 2012-2021 57 84 19 2195 100* 33.76 3701 59.30 1 17 5 218 52
Mohammad Yousuf (PAK) 1998-2010 90 156 12 7530 223 52.29 14372 52.39 24 33 11 957 51
KC Sangakkara (SL) 2000-2015 134 233 17 12400 319 57.40 22882 54.19 38 52 11 1491 51
SCJ Broad (ENG) 2007-2021 150* 218 36 3370 169 18.51 5168 65.20 1 13 38 406 49
PA de Silva (SL) 1984-2002 93 159 11 6361 267 42.97 11249+ 51.04* 20 22 7 737+ 48
Javed Miandad (PAK) 1976-1993 124 189 21 8832 280* 52.57 15164+ 45.99* 23 43 6 788+ 48

 

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