When we hear the words ‘fastest century’ the first name that comes to mind is none other than Shahid Afridi. The former Pakistani captain held the record for the fastest century in ODI cricket for many years before Corey Anderson broke it.

Afridi scored his infamous 37-ball century in an era where batting with 200+ strike rate was a rarity. However, with the evolution of T20 cricket and improved training methods, players are now achieving centuries in remarkably fewer balls than in previous eras. In this article, we’ll explore the top five fastest centuries in ODI cricket.

Mark Boucher – South Africa vs Zimbabwe (44 balls)

Mark Boucher, a crucial member of South Africa’s golden generation, smashed a whirlwind century in just 44 balls in 2006. Coming in after a solid foundation laid by the openers, Boucher’s innings, studded with 8 fours and 10 sixes, propelled South Africa to a colossal 418 runs. Despite his lightning-fast century, Boucher continued his assault, eventually scoring 147 runs off 68 deliveries. His explosive innings aided South Africa in clinching a resounding victory by 171 runs.

Source: Cricinfo

Asif Khan – UAE vs Nepal (41 Balls)

During a clash between the United Arab Emirates and Nepal in 2023, Asif Khan’s blazing innings altered the game’s course. Batting at number seven, Khan’s spectacular knock helped bolster the team’s total past 300 runs. Partnering with Vriitya Aravind, he crafted a 135-run partnership and crafted a blistering century off just 41 balls.

fastest century
Source: Cricinfo

Shahid Afridi – Pakistan vs Sri Lanka (37 balls)

Shahid ‘Boom Boom’ Afridi announced his arrival in international cricket with a lightning-fast century in just 37 balls during his second ODI against Sri Lanka in 1996. His explosive innings, including 11 sixes and 6 fours, propelled Pakistan to an 82-run victory, making it a memorable performance in cricket history.

Source: Cricinfo

Corey Anderson – New Zealand vs West Indies (36 balls)

Corey Anderson’s thunderous innings against West Indies in 2014 saw him score the then-fastest century in ODI cricket, breaking Afridi’s 18-year-old record. Anderson reached 100 runs in just 36 balls. With a total of 131 runs off 47 balls, including 14 sixes and 6 fours, Anderson played a pivotal role in New Zealand’s triumph by 159 runs.

Source: Cricinfo

AB de Villiers – South Africa vs West Indies (31 balls)

AB de Villiers, also known as Mr. 360 holds the record for the fastest century in ODI cricket, having smashed it in just 31 balls against West Indies in Johannesburg. His awe-inspiring knock of 149 runs off 44 balls, comprising sixteen sixes and nine fours, helped South Africa post a monumental 439/2, eventually securing a resounding 148-run victory.

Source: Cricinfo

These stunning displays of power-hitting showcase the evolution of batting in cricket, setting remarkable milestones in the history of the sport.

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