A double century is a mighty achievement at any level of the game so let’s now look at the players who have been most prolific on cricket’s highest stage.
Players with the Most Double Hundreds in Test Cricket
Previously, we discussed what is a century and who has the most centuries in the world. Now let’s double the stakes:
The following list reveals the names of those who have made the most double tons in test match history. If there are players tied on the same number of double centuries made, the batsman with the fewest innings will be placed higher.
Many of these batters have now retired but there is scope for some to climb the list or for others in the Top 20 chart to hit the Top 10.
1. Don Bradman
If there’s any list of batting records, chances are that Sir Don Bradman will be at the top. He was a prolific run scorer across a test career lasting from 1928 to 1948 and his final average of 99.94 is unlikely to ever be broken.
In terms of double centuries in the longest form of the game, ‘The Don’ passed this mark on 12 occasions. Along with that average of 99.94, he made 29 centuries overall and had a highest score of 334.
2. Kumar Sangakkara
Sri Lanka’s Kumar Sangakkara was a prolific run scorer in all forms of the game and he came so close to matching Don Bradman’s record for double centuries. Sangakkara passed the 200 mark on 11 separate occasions and he finished his career with a highest score of 319.
His was a much longer career than Bradman’s and, in 134 tests, Sri Lanka’s finest made 12,400 runs. Since retiring, Sangakkara has become a coach and a respected commentator.
3. Brian Lara
Another prolific left handed batsman slots in at number three on this list. Brian Lara may not have the most double centuries but he is a record holder with the highest first class score and he’s the only man to reach 400 in a test innings.
After making his debut for the West Indies in 1990, Lara made nine double tons in 131 matches with an average of 52.88. That brilliant 400 against England in 2004 is another mark that may never be equalled.
4. Wally Hammond
Wally Hammond can sometimes be overlooked when it comes to talking about England’s greatest ever batsmen. Hobbs, Hutton and Sutcliffe are more well-known, but Hammond was far more productive in certain areas.
One of those areas covers double centuries. Hammond scored no fewer than seven of these and that’s an impressive return from just 85 test matches. His highest score in tests was 336 which was made against New Zealand in 1933.
5. Virat Kohli
At the time of writing, India’s Virat Kohli is the only man in the top ten still playing test cricket. As such, he still has time to climb this list. At the end of the series between India and South Africa in 2022, Kohli had made seven double hundreds from 99 tests with a best of 254.
He had been going through a barren period but Kohli is too good a player to be out of form for long.
6. Mahela Jayawardene
Sri Lanka’s Mahela Jayawardene also has seven test double centuries but these came from a total of 149 games. He was a big part of a golden period for batsmen in his country and his highest test score was a colossal 374.
By the end of that 149-test career, Jayawardene has scored 11.814 runs at an average of just under 50.
7. Marvan Atapattu
Marvan Atapattu is, perhaps, another batsman who doesn’t quite get the credit he deserves. While we often talk about Jayawardene, Sangakkara and Dilshan, Atapattu’s contribution came sometimes be forgotten.
That’s a real shame because he was a prolific opener, scoring six double hundreds in a long career that included a highest score of 249.
8. Virender Sehwag
He was a hard hitting opening batsman with multiple double tons in One Day cricket but Virender Sehwag could also accumulate big scores at test level. In 104 tests for his country, Sehwag passed 200 on six occasions and he returned a test-best of 319.
He dealt brutally with wayward bowling and would retire with 8586 test runs at an average of 49.34.
9. Javed Miandad
There is some debate as to who was Pakistan’s greatest batsman of all time. Hanif Mohammad often comes into the conversation while two other contenders appear in ninth and tenth place on this list.
Former skipper Javed Miandad was a fierce competitor on the field and he was a very fine player. Across a test career lasting from 1976 to 1993, he made six double centuries with a highest score of 280.
10. Younis Khan
A player who matched Javed Miandad for double tons was Pakistan’s Younis Khan. He also passed 200 on six occasions but required 213 innings as opposed to Miandad’s 189.
Younis remains a prolific player and a highly respected former captain. In terms of a higher test score, he also has the edge with a best of 313 which came against Sri Lanka in 2009.
Credit should be given to the players who come in just outside of the top ten. Both Ricky Ponting and Sachin Tendulkar have also made six double centuries in test match cricket but they played more test innings than the men who appear in the top ten.
From 13th place onwards, there are some very fine cricketers: Graeme Smith, Joe Root, Alastair Cook and Rahul Dravid all made five double tons in their test careers and, in the case of Root, he has time to climb even higher.
Multiple double tons in any format are the mark of a fine batsman so these players are truly up there with the best of all time.