One-day cricket is considered to be defined by the batsmen. They are the ones who score a hundred or more runs, can relax in the feeling that they have almost single-handedly led their team home. Among such centurions, those who score their runs at a lightning speed are considered to be stars. In this article we present the fastest centurions in One-Day cricket.

Top 3 Fastest Centuries in One Day Cricket 

Shahid Afridi In 1996 at the Four Nations cup semi-final, a 16-year-old teenager came out to bat at no.3. He had not held the bat at the last match, which was his debut and this time he was facing the world champion bowling of Sri Lanka. There was some flutter in the stands as he defended his first ball. In the dressing room, some even argued with the captain at letting him in at number 3. But then the second ball came and this youngster smashed it cleanly over the stands and into the car-park. In hushed voices, the Sri Lankan players started asking his name. He was Shahid Afridi. The Boom Boom Mercurial Maverick.

In what was to be a great display of clean hitting Afridi smashed the ball to almost all parts of the ground. He raced to 41 in just 11 balls, and from then on to 100 off 37. He ended his innings at 102 in just 40 balls hitting 11 sixes and 6 fours. His blitzkrieg knock ensured that Pakistan put up a mammoth 371 in their allotted 50 overs. Mark Boucher  He had earned cemented his spot in the playing XI of South Africa as a wicket-keeper, but he had more to prove. In 2006, at Sedgars Park in Potchefstroom Mark Verdon Boucher proved his capabilities with the bat, when he hit the second fastest hundred in the history of One-Day Cricket. The game had been set by the openers, when Mark came out to bat. The easily imposed Zimbabwean bowling had already been taken to the cleaners and it was expected of him to play as a second cast and support the more established batsmen in the South African quest for victory.

That day however Boucher became the chief South African destroyer. Sixes rained from Boucher’s bat as Zimbabwe’s fielders became full-time ball-boys. His third six – there were ten in all – brought up his fifty off just 26 balls and he needed only 18 more to cudgel the fastest century by a South African and the second fastest after ShahidAfridi. The Zimbabweans bowled only 5 dot balls in Boucher’s innings and when he offered one of umpteen catches; Brendan Taylor was heard pleading on the stump microphone “Catch it, please!” . Inevitably, it was dropped. Boucher did not end, but the innings ended with him at 147 in just 68 balls. Brian Lara  He was the man with the golden bat and a smiling swagger. Known popularly as ‘Prince’ he is considered by many next only to Indian maestro Sachin Tendulkar in the world of Cricket. On October 9th 1999 at Bangladesh’s Bangabandhu stadium he added another feather to his cap. It was the second fastest century in One-Day cricket at that time. His record stood till Mark Boucher of South Africa broke it in 2006.

Brian Lara walked in to the ground amidst cheers from the crowd and then soon started a magical display of crisp strokeplay. But the West Indian run machine could have been sent back had Al Shahriar Rokon, standing in the first slip, caught him on the very first ball of the second over of the innings. The unlucky bowler was Shafiuddin Ahmed.After getting the life, Lara taught novice Bangladesh what should be the compensation of missing a catch from a player of his stature, who thenheld the record of highest score in both Test and first class cricket. Lara was finally dismissed by Habibul Bashar Sumon on 117. He took 62 balls and hit 18 fours and 4 sixes.   Read our featured article on The Best double Tons in ODI Cricket.

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