Corey Anderson, the New Zealand allrounder, was on 95 off 35 balls when he swung a Nikita Miller delivery for six over long leg to complete the quickest ODI hundred in history. One more delivery and he wouldn’t have had sole claim to the record, and would have had to share it with Shahid Afridi, who hit a landmark century against Sri Lanka in 1996.
Anderson, though, said the record wasn’t on his mind. “No, not really, I just thought it was a pretty quick hundred, I didn’t realise that it was the fastest,” he said. He hit 14 sixes in his unbeaten 131 off 47 balls to set up New Zealand’s crushing victory over West Indies in the third ODI in Queenstown.
Anderson came to the middle in the eighth over and completed his hundred off the first ball of the 18th, allowing little time for any nerves. “I think it was more of ‘go with it’, the hundred never really got into my mind. I sort of got there so quickly, I didn’t have time to think about it. It’s just one of those things, you keep going with it, striking it and try and get as many runs on the board as you can. It becomes more about a team than an individual performance.”
His innings has already created buzz about Anderson’s value at the IPL auction next month. West Indies captain Dwayne Bravo hoped Anderson would be his team-mate in the IPL. “Hope to see him in Chennai Super Kings, the auction is around the corner and hopefully MS [Dhoni] and Flem [coach Stephen Fleming] pick him up, it’s going to be a bonus for us, a great knock,” Bravo said. “The way how the guy batted, it was not just slogging, you know he played proper cricket shots, that shows someone can bat, has the ability to bat, turn over strike ever so often, hit straight, hit clean, and he’s powerful, so why not. This innings is a big innings, it will do him a lot of favours.”
Anderson himself wasn’t getting carried away. “Those things float about,” Anderson said, “I’m happy where I am at with New Zealand, I’m still trying to cement my place as well.”
Jesse Ryder, another batsman trying to cement a place in the side, also put in a blistering performance – he smashed the sixth-quickest ODI century in only his second international after a lengthy layoff and, with Anderson, put on a 191-run stand in 75 deliveries for the fourth wicket. “It’s nice to have another guy at the other end doing a similar thing,” Anderson said. “It’s tough for bowlers, they can’t get any rhythm, they don’t know where the ball is probably going to be going.”
Anderson said the innings and the big win was the “best feeling that I’ve probably had on a cricket field”. His captain Brendon McCullum called the centuries a “once-in-a-lifetime sort of performance from two people”. “Statistically it (Anderson’s ton) is the fastest , I don’t know how many ODIs have been played, probably in excess of 3000 (3451), and for him to be No. 1 in terms of the speed with which he was able to get to a hundred, and Jesse being No. 6 is pretty unbelievable really, ” McCullum said. “That to me is as clean striking as I have ever witnessed at a ground.”
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