Batsmanship in Test cricket is associated with many factors. Seeing off threats, battling past great spells, picking out gaps and ability to run between wickets often make champion batsmen. It isn’t just about the application here in red-ball cricket. The overall offerings are what separates you from the rest of the pack in Tests.
However, there are a handful of batsmen that went on to get those big knocks and covert hundreds into double hundreds and even triple.
When you look at the best names with the most double hundreds, some of the greatest of all-time figures in this. From Sir Donald Bradman, Sachin Tendulkar, Brian Lara to Ricky Ponting, Kumar Sangakkara and even Virender Sehwag belong here.
In modern-day Test cricket, Indian captain Virat Kohli is the one that has made his presence felt with some magnificent double hundreds.
In this article, we look at the batsmen with the most double hundreds in Test cricket.
Bradman and Hammond bossed the first era
Australian legend and perhaps the GOAT, Sir Donald Bradman, was one of a kind. He was a genius and defined batting that many others can only take inspiration from. Bradman was the first true batting legend the game produced. He was a class above the rest and his domination in the game is laudable. The hero for Australia in The Ashes, Bradman gave sleepless nights to England every time he walked into the field.
In 52 matches, Bradman ended up with 6,996 runs at an average of 99.94. His feats included 29 centuries. Also, more than 5,000 runs came against England for the right-handed batsman. Interestingly, Bradman leads the tally of most double hundreds (10). He also scored two triple tons with a best of 334.
Joining the inspirational legend, was England’s, Wally Hammond. He was one of the most celebrated batsmen that loved to score runs aplenty. He was meant to bat and pile up the runs. His stats give a glimpse of his quality. Between 1920 and 1951 Hammond scored 50,493 runs, with 167 centuries and an average of 56.10.
Not just that as a bowler he had 732 wickets and held 820 catches in this time period. This is absolute mastery. He belonged to the league of Bradman and was England’s best showman.
In Tests he scored 7249 runs (22 centuries) at 58.45. Hammond smashed six double centuries and one triple ton.
Tendulkar, Lara, and Ponting were masters of the game
If you look at artisans in cricket, the three gentlemen that stood out in Tests were Tendulkar, Lara, and Ponting. Indian batsman Tendulkar became the highest run-scorer in Tests eventually and was treated like a God in a cricket-crazy nation. He was a true ambassador of the game and depended on his longevity to smash records.
With 200 Tests under his belt, Tendulkar was likened as the Bradman of his era. He amassed 15,921 runs in Test cricket at 53.78. The Master Blaster smashed 51 tons that included six double centuries. The run-machine will be cherished forever in cricket.
Lara was a natural stroke-player. He was someone who presented a certain sense of joy while batting. It was intensely beautiful watching the southpaw bat all day long. The southpaw, who holds the record for the highest Test score, amassed seven double centuries for West Indies. However, he also smashed two triple tons with a best of 400*. A true West Indian hero, Lara set the standards high just like Tendulkar.
Former Australian captain Ricky Ponting was an all-round hero in the game. He was a class ODI sensation. And in Tests too, he had his own space. After Bradman, Punter is definitely the best to have come out in Test cricket for Australia. He had an aura that was positive and radiant. Like Lara, he was a charm with his shot-making. Punter amassed six double hundreds and scored 13,378 runs with a best of 257.
Lankan maestros Sangakkara and Mahela were geniuses
Kumar Sangakkara is the greatest batsman ever for Sri Lanka. The versatile southpaw had real hunger in his eyes and then feasted on bowlers across different conditions and continents. Sanga was a class batsman whose ability to be different and consistent helped him.
He scored 10 double hundreds and is equal to Bradman. The left-handed batsman also notched a triple century. Sanga went on to score 12,400 runs at a splendid average of 57.40. Whenever he scored, Lanka did well.
The southpaw was helped massively by Mahela. The latter was a part of the golden era for Lanka. In Jayawardene, the Lankans got someone with something so classy and sound. He batted for long periods and nullified bowlers. His ability to find the gaps and rotate strike made him a true champion.
Mahela amassed six double hundreds and one triple century. He scored 11,814 runs.
Another Lankan that deserves a mention in Marvan Atapattu. A solid customer, Atapattu scored six double centuries out of his 16-career Test tons.
Kohli the modern-day hero, Sehwag was a rare breed
30-year-old Indian skipper Virat Kohli is a true modern-day hero. Kohli works hard and the results follow him. The player has set the standards in batting and is an inspiration for many.
His fitness, leadership attributes and being the base of this Indian side make the player a true sporting character to have.
Kohli is the best Indian batsman ever after Tendulkar. At such an age, he has scaled great heights. He is an all-round spectacle across formats.
His transition, tempo and ability to run between the wickets makes him a special talent. Kohli has already hit 27 Test tons that include seven double centuries.
His latest came against South Africa in the recently-concluded three-match series.
Virender Sehwag was a rare breed. He was a gifted opener, who could demolish sides at a go. His career was indeed a remarkable one. His strike-rate was above 80 in Tests and he had that ability to get to milestones with a maximum. The first Indian to score a triple ton, Sehwag was a gem of a player.
He got those big hundreds and converted runs well. A boundary-hitter, Sehwag amassed four double tons and two triple centuries. He set the base for India to dominate matches with his attributes atop.