Sports is not just about playing a game with a motto to win. It’s much more than that. There’s an emotion that drives the spirit of players and fans alike. The sheer passion shared by the lovers of sports is visible when a crucial match reaches its climax. Loud cheers and slow sweat signify the gravity of such moments. Even in a general scenario, we find admirers gathering souvenirs and jerseys of their favourites. And these materialistic items that they gather are symbolic of the heroism their stars exhibit. Jersey numbers in cricket appeared in the late 1990s and today some of the greatest players can be recognized by the jersey number they wear. Are you eager to know the best jersey numbers in cricket? Then, read this article to expand your knowledge regarding cricket players’ jersey numbers.
Most Iconic Jersey Numbers In Cricket History
Chris Gayle Jersey Number: 333
The Jamaican storm whose striking powers bring him almighty credentials. Christopher Henry Gayle aka the Universe Boss has the most formidable records, especially in T20 International format. Gayle is the only player to have scored a triplet of centuries – Triple hundreds in Test, Double hundreds in ODI, and hundred in T20 as well. In T20 International, Gayle became the first-ever batsman to hit 1,000 sixes. Rising against all odds – injuries and poor form, Gayle became the highest run-scorer for West Indies in the ODI format. For his destructive style of play, Gayle found a noticeable place in the ICC T20I Team of the Decade.
Gayle dons the jersey number 333 on his t-shirt. Since there’s always a significant reason behind jersey numbers in cricket, there’s one here as well. As per the Cricket Lounge, in 2010, playing a test match against Sri Lanka at Galle International Stadium, Gayle scored 333 runs off 437 balls with a stupendous strike rate of over 70. That day, he blitzed the opponent side with thunderous 9 sixes and spectacular 34 fours. Post that match, he began wearing the milestone he had achieved in his career and went off breaking more records. In a T-20 international, Gayle once scored 175 playing against an IPL team Pune Warrior in 2013. Thus, 175 also found a place among the best jersey numbers in cricket.
Rahul Dravid Jersey Number: 19
The wall of India has contributed exceptionally to the world of cricket. He scored runs as and when required, but moreover, stood firm in crucial matches where the team had to withstand unprecedented hardships. With over 25,000 international runs on his career scoreboard, Mr Dependable proved his place in the history of world cricket. His records in the Test format of cricket are incredible. Dravid can be credited with records such as “most balls ever faced” and “most time spent on the pitch”. As a matter of fact, he has a unique record of not getting out for a golden duck. All these combined, Dravid became a firm symbol of endurance and received several accolades for his contribution. He was the first non-Australian to deliver Bradman Oration, recipient of Padma Shri and Padma Bhushan and inducted into the ICC Hall of Fame in 2018.
The star-studded cricketing legend started out with the jersey number 5 in his career. Later, the master of Tests donned another jersey number, was number 19. There’s an interesting story behind it. While many believed it to be for astrological reasons, the only reason that supported the cause was very different. When the media people failed to take it any longer and asked Dravid to unveil the mystery behind one of the best jersey numbers in cricket, he simply said, jersey number 19 helps him to remember his wife’s birthday. Conclusively, this Cricket Lounge article corroborates Rahul Dravid’s intention behind his jersey number.
Shane Warne Jersey Number: 23
The former captain of the Australian cricket team and the person who once bowled the ball of the century, Shane Warne, has an exciting jersey story. Before that we must know more about one of the greatest spin bowlers of all time, in fact, the only bowler in the Wisden Cricketers of the 20th Century. Joining world cricket in 1992, Shane Warne became one of the stalwarts of the Australian Cricket Team. He picked up over 1,000 international wickets in his sixteen years long career. Warne had become synonymous with spin bowling when he was nearing retirement. Inducted into the ICC Hall of Fame in 2013, Warne is a cricketing legend that generations will remember.
One of the greatest spin bowlers of all time, in fact, the only bowler in the Wisden Cricketers of the 20th Century. Warne donned the jersey number 23 while picking up on one amazing batsman after another. On enquiring the reasons behind one of the most famous cricket players jersey numbers, Warne opined that his choice is inspired by that of other sporting legends. As a matter of fact, Warne followed in the steps of his favorites – David Beckham and Michael Jordan, both of whom wore jersey number 23.
Virat Kohli Jersey Number: 18
Captain of the Indian Cricket Team and arguably the best batsman in the world today, Virat Kohli necessarily gets a mention on this list. In truth, Virat has the best ratings in all formats compared to every Indian batsman to date. Called the ODI Specialist for being the fastest in reaching 8,000, 9,000, 10,000, 11,000 and 12,000 runs in One Day International history. For his amazing contribution to the sport, he has received Sir Garfield Sobers Trophy, Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna and several other ICC awards for being the best in what he does.
The tragic story of King Kohli can be traced to one of the best jersey numbers in cricket – number 18. As per Jagran Josh, in the year 2006, when Kohli was batting against Karnataka in the Ranji Trophy series, he received bad news. His father, Prem Kohli, passed away. The sudden shock did not deter king Kohli’s confidence and went on to score a ninety in that match. That day, Kohli attained the charisma of a hero, who was willing to fight against all odds. The master cricketer ensured that his jersey number shall be a tribute to his greatest hero, his father, who passed away on 18th December. Since he joined international cricket, Kohli has always donned the jersey number 18.
Sachin Tendulkar Jersey Number: 10
Regarded as the greatest of all time: Jersey Number 10. World sporting legends like Kaka, Diego Maradona, Lionel Messi, Michael Owen, Pele and many more have worn this jersey. As for cricket jerseys in cricket, probably the most popular has to be 10. After all, the God of cricket donned the no.10. With most runs in Test and ODI, Sachin Tendulkar ranks the second-best Test and ODI batsman after Don Bradman and Vivian Richards respectively. Glorified by excellent Indian honours – Bharat Ratna, Padma Vibhushan, Padma Shri, Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna and Arjuna Award, Sachin stands as the most prolific Indian sportsperson to date. The little master has an unparalleled story, hard to cover in a few lines.
Sachin Tendulkar walked the pitches wearing number 10 and created history in his 26-year-long career. In India, every kid knows the number 10 and in fact, nobody in Indian cricket after Sachin’s retirement has worn that jersey, except the Shardul Thakur controversy. There are several stories circulating that predict why the number 10? Some relate it to Victory and Power, while others say, it’s the ‘TEN’ in Tendulkar. However, the real reason remains hidden from his fans and cricket enthusiasts alike. Read this Sports Café to further learn why Indian cricketers can no longer don the number 10 jersey.
Herschelle Gibbs Jersey Number: 00
Exceptional batsman and an astounding fielder, who once defined the spirit of South African cricket – the Scooter aka Herschelle Gibbs. Widely considered as the record maker and breaker of the last decade in the 20th century, Gibbs left his mark on world cricket. Playing for 14 long years, he introduced a distinct style of play and took his team to spheres of success. In fact, Gibbs was the first batsman in ODI history to score six sixes in an over. The event occurred in the 2007 World Cup when South Africa played against the Netherlands. Add to that, Gibbs once held the record fastest century by a South African batsman. Talking of centuries, he still remains among the rare 10 batsmen who scored hundreds on three consecutive occasions.
One thing that struck out about Gibbs was his jersey. While the best jersey numbers in cricket are famous due to the players who wore them, Gibbs has a different case. Herschelle Gibbs had a habit of wearing the last two digits of the year he was playing in. This became his trademark, starting with the year 2000 when he wore 00 as his jersey number and the trend followed on till his retirement in 2010. Read more about Herschelle Gibbs in this Cricket Times article.
Virendra Sehwag Jersey Number: None
Mahendra Singh Dhoni Jersey Number: 7
The last feature on the list of the 8 most iconic jersey numbers in cricket history is the ultimate champion of all time – MS Dhoni, the former skipper of the Indian Cricket Team. He is the reason India could win all the major ICC Trophies in the 21st century and become the most fierce cricketing side of the decade 2010. He holds the record of being selected as captain five times in the ICC World ODI XI teams. A marvellous wicket-keeper, an astounding finisher, and an inspirational leader, possibly the best ever. MSD has left a legacy behind, which the coming generation of cricketers will see as the dawn of Indian cricket.
MS Dhoni’s jersey has often been vigorously discussed in the media. Once when he attended an event as a brand ambassador, he was asked the rationale behind his iconic jersey. Dhoni responded whole-heartedly, as this sports news article recalls the story – “Why do you wear a number 7 jersey?” To this Dhoni replied, “‘When I used to play football, my jersey number used to be 22. but when I came to Team India, only one jersey was empty which I got, now it will be said by chance that my Both Birth Month and Birth Date are 7, so people added it to my lucky number.” Interestingly, for the hardcore football fan that Dhoni is, many football legends like Christiano Ronaldo and David Beckham share the jersey number 7.
Muttiah Muralitharan Jersey Number: 800
Muttiah Muralitharan is regarded as one of the nicest guys to play cricket virtually universally. Despite this, he has been at the centre of several issues that were not of his doing. Based only on statistics, Muralitharan stands out as a dominant player and enjoys the rare distinction of owning the records for both the most wickets in One Day Internationals and Test matches. In actuality, Murali’s bowling abilities are comparable to Tendulkar’s batting abilities.
But there is no denying that Murali can work magic with a cricket ball in his hands. With his incredible spin and subtle variations, he has confounded generations of batters and has served as a one-man army for the Sri Lankan bowlers. Murali’s potential was undeniable, but it wasn’t until a few years after his 1992 debut that he truly came into his own. His statistics from 1998 onward depict an amazing decade. Over 1000 international wickets were taken by him, at an average of 20.80 in Test games and 21.23 in ODIs (653 in Tests and 405 in ODIs).
The storied right-arm spinner from Sri Lanka is regarded as one of the all-time best bowlers in Test matches. He took 534 One-Day International wickets and 800 Test wickets. Muralitharan wore the number 8 jersey throughout his career, but when he retired, he had the record number 800 inscribed on it to represent the total amount of test wickets he had ever taken.
Hashim Amla Jersey Number: 1
Hashim Mahomed Amla OIS (born 31 March 1983) is a former South African cricketer who competed in all three game formats for his country. Amla has the record for having scored 2000, 3000, 4000, 5000, 6000, and 7000 ODI runs the quickest of all time. He also achieved 10 ODI centuries more quickly than any other player. Amla, who occasionally bowls off-breaks and captained South Africa in Test matches from June 2014 to January 2016, is a bowler.
His 311 not out against England at The Oval in London in July 2012 retains the record for the greatest individual Test score by a South African batsman. He bats right-handed.
In 86, 94, 98, 102, and 108 innings, he set a record for the quickest cricketer to hit 15, 16, 17, 18, and 20 hundred in One Day International (ODI) matches.
Prithvi Shaw Jersey Number: 100
Prithvi Shaw is not the first and most definitely won’t be the last young Mumbai batsman to get attention in cricket. A precocious child prodigy, Shaw caused a stir in the Indian cricketing community with a manic display of batting in Mumbai’s Harris Shield when he was just 14 years old. His unprecedented 546 was the highest score in any competitive cricket at the time, and it stood for more than a century until Pranav Dhanawade beat it in 2016. Several talent scouts in the Indian cricketing scene have since kept a close eye on him. He hasn’t let down the eager fans of the sport either, amassing plenty of runs in school cricket and advancing up the junior cricket divisions with the sheer weight of runs.
India’s Prithvi Shaw-led squad defeated Australia in the ICC Under-19 World Cup championship match, becoming Boys in Blue the most successful side in the tournament’s history with four victories.
Shaw, who is widely regarded as a potential star, was ecstatic and had no words to describe how it felt to hold the world cup trophy.
“Many memories were made there. I’m having trouble expressing how I’m feeling right now. I’m simply thrilled, he declared. The 18-year-old, who was coached by Rahul Dravid, led the group to World Cup triumph and won the prized trophy, just as Mohammad Kaif in 2002, Virat Kohli in 2008, and Unmukt Chand in 2012. Shaw made a significant impact both as a captain and as an opening batter. He contributed throughout the ICC competition with strong scores to provide a foundation for others. His batting talent has been compared to that of batting icon Sachin Tendulkar at such a young age.
It’s intriguing to consider the jersey number Shaw wore given the enormous shoes he has to fill. On his back, he carried the number 100. A triple-digit number on a cricketer’s shirt is often unusual to see, although Shaw has been wearing it for some time. His justification is too naive and, in a sense, amusing.
For a long time, Prithvi Shaw was predicted to be the next great thing in Indian cricket, and Delhi paid a fantastic sum of 1.2 Crores to acquire him. Shaw wasn’t initially given the chance to play in the starting eleven, but Gautam Gambhir’s bad performance gave him the chance. He took use of his opportunities and frequently led Delhi off to quick starts.
Before Rishabh Pant could unleash his fury at the finish, he cemented his position in the side by tearing up the powerplay after a strong start with a 10-ball 22 and a flurry of aggressive innings during the season. Shaw aims to imitate their performances.
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Frequently Asked Questions
One of the rising superstars of Indian cricket, Shubman Gill dons jersey number 77. While playing for India in the U-19 World Cup, Gill scored 372 runs and won the title of Player of the Tournament, making a name for himself before entering the senior international level. He has so far been praised by a number of legends like Sourav Ganguly, Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar and VVS Laxman. Gill made his ODI debut in 2019, while India played against the Kiwis in Hamilton. The mystery behind jersey number 77 remains unknown to date.
Kannur Lokesh Rahul, right-hand batsman and wicketkeeper for India, dons the jersey number 1 in cricket. A master debutant for scoring a century in the very first international ODI match of his career, in 2016 against Zimbabwe. Rahul has had an extraordinary career so far, mainly due to his appetite for scoring big scores and standing up in times of crisis. In fact, Rahul is the fastest batsman to score centuries in all three formats. Also, he is the first player to score a century in T20 international, while batting at number 4 or below. Why he wears jersey number 1 is still not known, however, fans believe it signifies Power and Patience.
The rare left-arm unorthodox young spinner of India, Kuldeep Yadav, dons the jersey number 23. He has the record of being the second Indian and third spinner in the world to pick hattricks in all formats of cricket. In 2019, Yadav became the first bowler for India to effect two hattricks in One Day International. A year later in 2020, Yadav became the fastest bowler, in regard to innings, to reach 100 wickets in ODI. Many have predicted the reason for his 23-number jersey, however, the play has still not revealed the story behind it.
Jersey numbers mean something significant in modern-day cricket. As a matter of fact, jersey numbers in cricket are a very recent phenomenon. The 1995-96 World Series Cup in Australia first saw the use of jersey numbers in cricket. Other playing countries soon followed suit. Player numbering was used in the 1999 World Cup, where the captain wore jersey number 1, while the rest of the squad was numbered between 2 to 15. Later on, this rigid system changed and now, players in all cricket-playing nations have the freedom to choose their jersey numbers, except the prominent ones which have been retired by the International Cricket Council.
10 is the best jersey number in cricket because the God of cricket, Sachin Tendulkar, sported it while making one record after another. The man who scored a hundred will always have a special place in the history of cricket. As for the jersey number, post the Shardul Thakur controversy, was retired by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). In reality, a good number of legends in the sporting world have donned the number 10 jersey in their careers. The list of such legends includes Lionel Messi and Pele. Diego Maradona and more.
Call him the Wall or Mr Dependable, Rahul Dravid is the name, who at the start of his career sported the jersey number 5. In cricket, Rahul Dravid earned credentials, especially for his performance in the Test format throughout his sixteen-year career. Coming back to jersey numbers, Dravid later changed into jersey number 19. While many believe it had been a result of an astrological projection, the cricketing star later clarified that it was to simply remember his wife’s birthday.
While playing a Test match against Sri Lanka in 2010, Chris Gayle posted a gigantic individual score of 333 on the board. Levelling his stature of big hits and fearsome innings, Gayle began wearing his Test career best as jersey number. As for T20 International, he wears 175, the score he made against Pune Warrior in the 2013 edition of the Indian Premier League. Donning career milestones is a popular method of jersey numbering.
Manish Pandey wears the jersey number 21 for India. He is an excellent right-handed middle-order batsman, who’s best known for his match-saving innings. In the Indian Premier League, he’s remembered for being the first Indian to score a century. Best known for his batting technique, Pandey brings class to his jersey number.
Completing 12 splendid years in 2020, Virat Kohli is considered the king of cricket. Sensational batsman, inspiring fielder and a highly capable captain, Kohli has left an indelible mark in the history of the game. To date, he has proven to be highest rated Indian batsman in all formats of cricket.
Yuvraj Singh, the Indian big-hitter, is undoubtedly a powerful left-handed batsman. He also bowls and fields pretty well, making him an innovative all-rounder. Endless records in ODI and T20 cricket are attributed to Yuvi. His aggressive style of play earned him a massive fan base. He’s one among the very few to have hit six sixes in an over, off Stuart Broad. He dons the jersey number 12, making it among the best jersey numbers in cricket.
Kane Williamson, captain of the New Zealand Cricket Team, wears the jersey number 22 in cricket. Williamson is a consistent batsman, appearing in the top ICC rankings for Test and ODI formats. Since joining international cricket for his national side in 2010, Williamson has always maintained a squad presence for all the major tournaments. In the 2019 World Cup, Williamson led the Kiwis to the finals against England. In the process of doing so, he became the Player of the Tournament for his marvellous performance throughout.