10 Most Famous Cricket Jersey Numbers of All Time
Cricketers world over have created a level of adoration among fans, who wish to know more about their idols beyond their performance on the field. One thing fans are particularly curious about is jersey numbers and the stories behind them. Thus began the interest in the tales behind some of the most famous cricket jersey numbers ever.
1. Sachin Tendulkar – 10
We start off with an unanswered question. Arguably the most iconic jersey in cricket history, the story behind the number 10 jersey isn’t known. Sachin Tendulkar has been rather private about the reason behind his choice of number, leading to widespread conjecture with regard to the reason. Nevertheless, it remains one of the most famous cricket jersey numbers simply by association with the God of Cricket.
2. Chris Gayle – 333
The grandest, most swagged-out cricketer in modern times, Chris Gayle chose a very special jersey number for himself after a career milestone innings. His 333 runs off 437 balls in a test game against Sri Lanka at the Galle International Stadium gave birth to one of the most famous cricket jersey numbers for one of the most recognisable players in the world.
3. Shane Warne -23
There have been so many fans and aspiring players who have taken inspiration from their idols for their jersey numbers. One of them, who became a part of that same pantheon, was Shane Warne. His idols, Michael Jordan and David Beckham used 23 on their backs. Warne, out of his adoration for them both, decided to use the same number for his own jersey as well. Warne made it to the same elite group of athletes whom he had once idolised and wished to emulate, making his own number one of the most famous cricket jersey numbers to ever be used.
4. MS Dhoni – 7
The stars seem to have aligned for this one. When MS Dhoni was inducted into the Indian side, the only available jersey number was 7. As a footballer before he switched to cricket, he used the number 22. It’s pure coincidence that both his birth month and birth date are both 7. He admits that it was fans who associated the number 7 with him as his lucky number. The number 7 also connects him to his football background, as some of the most iconic footballers such as Christiano Ronaldo and David Beckham also used the iconic Number 7 jersey. The story built itself around Dhoni and now the number 7 will always be his for cricket fans worldwide.
5. Rahul Dravid- 19
The most dependable batsman India has produced in years, Rahul Dravid has over 25,000 international runs under his belt. He’s stayed out on the field during crucial matches and won games for the team, often single-handedly. His jersey number, however, has little to do with cricket. Dravid uses the number 19 because it helps him remember his wife’s birthday! As absurd as that may be, he’s admitted that’s the reason he chose this number. The number has been immortalised and while for him it may be a reminder of his wife, for the world it will always be associated with The Wall.
6. Virat Kohli – 18
One of the most acclaimed batsmen in modern cricket has one of the most bittersweet stories behind how he chose his jersey number. The number 18 in cricket will always be associated with him, but for him, the number has a far deeper, more personal connotation. During a Ranji Trophy game against Karnataka on December 18th, 2006, Kohli found out about his father’s tragic demise. While he was devastated and wanted to pull out of the game and go back home, he stayed on and puts 90 runs on the board for his team. Since then, he decided to honour his greatest hero and use the number 18 on his jersey.
7. Ashwell Prince – 5+0
Remarkable for several of his actions, Ashwell Prince was a part of the South African team for over 50 ODIs. He was the first non-white player to lead the team when Graeme Smith was injured. A fan of Hansie Cronje for a long time, Prince was deeply affected by his untimely passing in a helicopter crash and decided to pay homage to his idol as part of his jersey number. Cronje used the number 5 on his back, so Prince decided to use the number and put “5+0” on his jersey. This is a truly heartwarming tale of a fan and his immense respect for a deceased idol.
8. Muttiah Muralitharan – 800/8
Perhaps one of the most adored players, both on and off the field, Muttiah Muralitharan has created an aura of affability around him with his genuine nature and sportsman’s spirit. He used the number 8 on his back, his whole career and it became synonymous with the bowler. However, after his retirement, he had the number 800 inscribed on it in order to commemorate his historic 800 wickets over his glorious test career. Since then, both numbers have become his and fans have touted both as some of the most famous cricket jersey numbers ever.
9. AB de Villiers – 17
There’s almost no cricket fan who doesn’t respect or follow Mr. 360°. Over the years AB de Villiers has garnered a truly loyal set of fans who have been ardently following his career and wish to know more about his life both on and off the field. The story behind his jersey number is just one such point of curiosity. His is a rather simple story. His number, 17, also happens to be his birthday – February 17th. De Villiers considers it his lucky number and has had it on his back in every format of the game throughout his career. We surely wouldn’t attribute his immense success to luck, but the number may have worked in his favour. Whatever it may be, the number 17 will always be one of the most famous cricket jersey numbers ever.
10. Virendra Sehwag – None
We’re bound to close this list with the most bizarre yet hilarious story. Virendra Sehwag, in all his swag, decided to let go of his jersey number altogether simply to avoid a conflict in his household. He started out using the number 44, which an astrological test revealed was unlucky for him. His mother and wife suggested the numbers 42 and 2 respectively. In order to avoid choosing between the two, he let go of the number altogether and went on to play some of his most iconic games without a jersey number.
The most famous cricket jersey numbers have added to the stories in the world of cricket and to the reason fans care about their idols and their thought process.
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