He might not have had the cleanest batting technique, but Virender Sehwag was regarded as one of India’s greatest Test openers, with a reputation and record to match.
5. 83 v England, 2008
This knock could have been ranked higher if he had scored even more, but it trumps his other centuries to make it to this list because of the sheer impact it had on the match. With India needing to chase 387 to win the historic Mumbai Test in 2008, Sehwag gave his team the perfect platform with 90 minutes of mayhem on the evening of day four, scoring a brisk 68-ball 83 that laid the platform.
4. 293 v Sri Lanka, 2009
Part of the team that reached the top of the ICC Test rankings, Sehwag showed how to tackle the might of the Sri Lankan spinners like only he could. It could have been his third triple century, but the way he handled Muttiah Muralitharan in his 254-ball knock, hitting 40 fours and seven sixes in his 293, was a treat in itself.
3. 319 v South Africa, 2008
The track was flat in Chennai, but it still required something special to dismantle the South African bowlers at home. Sehwag did it with ease, smashing his highest score in Test cricket and several records on the way. He took only 304 balls, hitting 42 fours and five sixes in his boundary-laced innings – Steyn, Ntini, Morkel, all were taken to the cleaners.
#2 201 v Sri Lanka, 2008
While the rest of the Indian batters struggled to put bat on ball, Sehwag was in a different mood, tearing Ajantha Mendis and Muralitharan apart in an enthralling display of power hitting. He remained not out at the end of it all, scoring 201 out of India’s 329. He went on to hit another 50 in the next innings.
#1 309 v Pakistan, 2004
If his 195 against Australia was a teaser of his brilliance, his 309 was a firm testament to his special talents in Test cricket. Sehwag laid into the Pakistan bowlers in Multan, becoming India’s first Test triple-centurion by hitting Saqlain Mushtaq for a massive six, one of five he scored in that innings. It became the base of India’s historic win in the country.