Who is the Fastest Runner in Cricket History and Today? (2022)

With runs so vital in the modern day game, it’s a fundamental skill for today’s cricketers to be quick between the wickets and sharp in the field, but who are the fastest runners of them all?

10 Fastest Runners in Cricket

1. MS Dhoni (India)

India’s inspirational captain MS Dhoni is at the very top of this list. All of his time in the army has clearly paid off but it’s said that he is blessed with a natural ability. Those close to the game say that MSD doesn’t spend a lot of time at the gym so his speed is quite remarkable.

Of course, when his team is batting, wicket keeper Dhoni can conserve his energy behind the stumps.

MS Dhoni
MS Dhoni, 2007, T20 World Cup

2. AB de Villiers (South Africa)

Another man who spent much of his career as a wicket keeper is AB De Villiers who slots in at number two in this list. He is very much a modern batsman with his innovations and he’s broken a number of records for fastest scores in all forms of cricket.

Part of his success clearly lies in the speed and acceleration that he gains between the wickets.

AB de Villiers
AB de Villiers, FILE

3. Jonty Rhodes (South Africa)

Jonty Rhodes was like lightning in the field and he had supreme pace between the wickets too. Like his compatriot AB De Villiers, Rhodes was another innovative batter who was one of the first to use some of the expansive shots that have made their way into the modern game.

It’s no exaggeration to say that Rhodes’ pace was close to that of an international sprinter and he was one of those players who revolutionized the way batsmen approached their innings.

Jonty-Rhodes
Jonty Rhodes

4. Ravindra Jadeja (India)

Another brilliant all rounder, India’s Ravindra Jadeja is primarily known as a left arm spinner who makes useful runs with the bat. That’s a little unfair when you consider that he’s made a test century and has scored triple hundreds in the Ranji Trophy.

Jadeja uses his lightning speed between the wickets to maximise his run scoring and is considered to be one of the most agile players in the Indian international squad.

ravindra jadeja
Ravindra Jadeja

5. Virat Kohli (India)

Of those players who is still involved at an international level, India’s Virat Kohli is considered to be the fastest of them all. He is a captain that likes to lead by example with the bat and, as part of that ethos, Kohli is incredibly fast between the wickets.

He’s always looking to put pressure on the fielding side by running the first one quickly and turning instantly with a view to adding a second. In modern day limited overs cricket, every run counts and it’s always a bonus to have the speedy Virat Kohli in your team.

virat kohli
Virat Kohli

6. David Warner (Australia)

Left handed batsman David Warner is known for his explosive hitting and that can mean that his speed between the wickets is often overlooked. It’s often said that he is one of the best judges of a run and will seldom be involved in a mix up with his batting partner.

That judgement is a useful quality to have on the vast cricket fields in Australia. He makes big runs and, while that power hitting is a massive part of his game, that pace between the wickets helps to maximise those high individual scores.

David warner
David Warner, AP

7. Mohammad Kaif (India)

India have been one of the most effective forces in limited overs cricket and that could be down to the speed of their batsmen. Another Indian entry on this list is Mohammad Kaif who retired from cricket in 2017 and he leaves with the reputation of being one of the fastest cricketers of all time.

Kaif is credited with being a man who set a new standard in terms of athleticism in the field and between the wickets. He may not have been the most talented cricketer of his generation but he played 138 times for India and that speed helped to make him something of a one day specialist.

mohammad-kaif
Mohammad Kaif, AFP

8. Brendon McCullum (New Zealand)

Like Virat Kohli, New Zealand’s Brendon McCullum was another captain who liked to lead by example. He began his career as a wicket keeper but, when he went into the outfield later on, he could be lightning fast around the boundary.

McCullum was another power hitter who could comfortably clear the boundary in all forms of the game but his high scores were boosted by his incredible speed between the wickets.

Brendon McCullum
Brendon McCullum, AP

9. Ricky Ponting (Australia)

Former Australian captain Ricky Ponting was such a great batsman that it’s easy to forget that he was one of the fastest cover fielders in cricket. In fact, when he was struggling for runs in the early stages of his international career, it was that speed that helped him keep his place in the side.

When batting, he could also accelerate between the wickets and that assisted Ponting’s incredible record of 27,483 international runs.

Ricky Ponting
Ricky Ponting, 2005, England

10. Martin Guptill (New Zealand)

Martin Guptill is one of the fastest men around the boundary in world cricket. He can often be found at long on as he has a safe pair of hands but he can also keep the runs down when the opposition keep the ball on the ground.

He brings that approach to speed across into his batting and that’s why Guptill was one of the batsmen chosen to face the Super Over in the 2019 World Cup final. He couldn’t quite get his team across the line there but he remains one of the fastest men between the wickets.

Martin Guptill
Martin Guptill

Also-Rans: Other Fast Runners Between the Wickets

While these men make up the top ten of fastest runners in world cricket, there are many others who are close to breaking into the elite list. In no particular order, the supplementary list would include:

  • Kane Williamson
  • Kieron Pollard
  • Inzamam ul Haq
  • Steve Smith
  • JP Duminy
  • Robin Singh
  • Michael Bevan
  • Mahela Jayawardena
  • Andrew Symonds
  • Herschelle Gibbs
  • Dwayne Bravo

Each of them has played an important role, both in the field and between the wickets where their speed can change a match in an instant.

If you are an amateur or club cricketer, you should also try to maximise your runs by being as fast as possible between the wickets.