Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 18 September 2019

Cricket World Cup 2019: Eoin Morgan an ODI record breaker but has a way to go to catch Shahid Afridi

The England batsman topped the most sixes in an innings against Afghanistan

It was a day that had the statisticians riffling through the history books - or computer data as is more commonly found in this digital era.

The location was Old Trafford in Manchester, the teams England and Afghanistan, and the man re-writing the order of records was Eoin Morgan, though he wasn't alone in creating crazy numbers.

Morgan bashed a thunderous 71-ball career-best 148 which included 17 sixes - an ODI innings record.

He only went in to bat in the 30th over.

"Getting quite old, running around with a bad back, you never think you can produce an innings like this," he said.

As the ball sailed over the boundary time and again he climbed the charts, moving ahead of the likes of Chris Gayle, the king of big hitters in the modern era, and the lesser known Xavier Marshall, whose 12 sixes for the West Indies against Canada in 2008 was a record at the time. It was his only international century.

The record had stood for 12 years up till then, with Sri Lanka' Sanath Jayasuriya having struck 11 maximums in a one-day international in 1996.

As bat sizes increased and limited-overs totals continued to grow, the records have tumbled more frequently in recent times, although there had been four years between Morgan's feat and South Africa's AB de Villiers and Gayle plundering 16 in an innings.

Gayle has reached double figures for sixes in an ODI innings no fewer than four times, while an England player's previous best was Jos Buttler's 12 in February 2019 against the West Indies - in the same match that Gayle hit 14.

Morgan, however, has some way to go when it comes to most sixes in an ODI career.

The clear leader here is Shahid Afridi with 351. The Pakistan all-rounder is way ahead of second-placed Gayle, who is unlikely to catch him given that he is retiring from international after this World Cup.

Morgan is in sixth place with 211, and, at 32, is unlikely to challenge Afridi's record. The same could be said of India's Rohit Sharma, 32, despite him still regularly clearing the fence.

At age 28, Buttler, 25th on the list with 123 ODI sixes, is a potential threat to Afridi's mark, but the Pakistani's place at the top looks safe for now at least.

Meanwhile, spare a thought for Afghanistan leg-spinner Rashid Khan, who conceded 110 runs from nine overs against England - the joint second worst figures in ODI history and most expensive at a World Cup.

The worst ODI bowling figures were recorded by Australia's Michael Lewis against South Africa in 2006 when he went for 113 in 10 overs. Pakistan's Wahab Riaz conceded 110 in 10 overs against England in 2016.

Updated: June 19, 2019 02:15 PM

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