Over the years, behind the success of every team, there have been brilliant partnerships. Irrespective of the format, partnerships hold the key to winning games. Batting partnerships allow the team to dominate the opponent's bowling attack and pile on the runs. Keeping the pressure off each other, excellent understanding, and trust are some of the vital aspects of a successful partnership.
In One Day Internationals, partnerships like Adam Gilchrist - Ricky Ponting, Virender Sehwag - Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid - Sourav Ganguly, Inzamam-ul-Haq - Yousuf Youhana, Andy Flower - Grant Flower, Gordon Greenidge - Desmond Haynes, Nathan Astle - Stephen Fleming, and Aravinda de Silva - Arjuna Ranatunga dominated the game successfully for a long time.
Surprisingly, none of the current ODI cricketers feature on the list.
Honorable Mentions: Greenidge - Haynes, Sehwag - Tendulkar, and Dravid - Ganguly.
On that note, let's take a look at the five most successful batting pairs in One Day Internationals of all-time.
#5 Adam Gilchrist & Matthew Hayden (Australia)
Adam Gilchrist and Matthew Hayden were a part of the Australian squad that dominated world cricket during the early 2000s. Opening the batting, they were ruthless at the top and demolished bowling attacks across the globe. In ODIs, Gilchrist scored 9619 runs at a strike rate of almost 100 while Hayden has 6133 runs under his belt.
As partners, Hayden and Gilchrist scored 5409 runs at an average of 47.44. They were involved in 16 hundred-run partnerships and 29 fifty-run partnerships. They won a lot of games together for Australia and provided brilliant starts on numerous occasions. Until now, they are the most successful batting pair for Australia in One Day Internationals.
#4 Marvan Atapattu, Sanath Jayasuriya (Sri Lanka)
Two of the most successful Sri Lankan cricketers of all-time, Atapattu and Jayasuriya forged a successful partnership at the top for Sri Lanka in the late 90s and early 2000s. Completely contrasting cricketers in terms of style, approach, and skills, the pair has scripted quite a few memorable wins for Sri Lanka.
Sanath Jayasuriya has scored 13430 runs in One Day Internationals with 28 hundreds and 68 fifties, while Marvan Atapattu has accumulated 8529 runs which included 11 hundreds and 59 fifties. The partnership of Atapattu and Jayasuriya has yielded 5462 runs for Sri Lanka at an average of almost 40. The pair has produced 14 hundred-run partnerships and 26 fifty-run partnerships.
237 runs against Australia in Sydney was the best these two put together.
#3 Tillakaratne Dilshan, Kumar Sangakkara (Sri Lanka)
One of the finest left-handers to have ever played the game, Kumar Sangakkara is one of the greatest ODI cricketers of all-time and the highest run-getter for Sri Lanka in ODIs. Sangakkara amassed 14234 runs in One Day Internationals at an average of 41.98. With 25 hundreds and 93 fifties, the former Sri Lankan captain played 404 ODIs for his national team.
Tillakaratne Dilshan, on the other hand, wasn't left far behind. The dashing opener has scored 10290 runs in One Day Internationals at an average of 39.27. The duo has put together some memorable partnerships and none better than the 210* against Bangladesh at Melbourne in the 2015 World Cup. They have scored 5475 runs together which included 20 hundred-run partnerships, second most in the history of ODI cricket.
#2 Mahela Jayawardene, Kumar Sangakkara (Sri Lanka)
The third Sri Lankan pair to feature on the list, these two legendary cricketers need no introduction. Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara were the pillars of Sri Lankan cricket for the most part of the 21st century and piled a truckload of runs across formats.
Two of Sri Lanka's top three run-getters in One Day Internationals, Jayawardene and Sangakkara have played some unbelievable knocks in their ODI careers. Jayawardene is the most capped Sri Lankan cricketer in ODIs and has scored 12650 runs in 443 games.
The pair has scored 5992 runs in ODIs at an average of 41.61 which included 15 hundred-run and 32 fifty-run partnerships. Sangakkara and Jayawardene have played together in 369 games and Sri Lanka won 55% of these games. The pair retired from international cricket on the same day after the 2015 World Cup exit.
#1 Sourav Ganguly, Sachin Tendulkar (India)
Two of the greatest ODI cricketers of all-time, Sourav Ganguly and Sachin Tendulkar top the list for the most successful batting pairs in One Day Internationals. Sachin has scored 18426 runs from 463 games in his ODI career, which included 49 hundreds and 96 fifties. Sourav has played 311 ODIs and scored 11363 runs at an average of 41.02, which included 22 hundreds and 72 fifties.
The pair has batted together for India in 176 One Day Internationals and amassed 8227 runs at an average of 47.55. The pair has put together 26 hundred-run and 29 fifty-run partnerships. They have won a lot of games for India and their best opening stand was 258 which came in an ODI against Kenya in 2001.
This could certainly be ranked as one of the toughest records to beat in ODI cricket.