Greatest ODI Cricket Team Ever? Investing Lessons From India’s Cricket Dominance

by Siddharth Singh Bhaisora

Published On Nov. 19, 2023

In this article

I love sports. I have played football, cricket, rugby and more at different levels across many countries. Many of us that love Football have been fortunate enough to see the Messi & Ronaldo era - and Messi’s sheer passion and drive to win the World Cup was arguably one of the greatest moments not just as a football fan, but as a sports fan. As a cricketing nation that lives and breathes cricket, its superstars' dominance and our love for the sport, this Cricket World Cup has far exceeded our dreams and imaginations.

Well, the current winning streak for the Indian Cricket Team in the 2023 ODI Cricket World Cup is quite possibly unparalleled not just in Cricket, but maybe even in all of sports history. Could we be seeing the greatest ODI cricket team ever, if not in this generation? And can we as investors explore some of the reasons for this dominance and apply them from Cricket to the world of investing, stock markets & beyond?

Today’s article is much more relaxed befitting the Cricket World Cup theme and will include a mix of sports and investing. We will first dive into the sheer dominant performance on display from the Indian Cricket Team, and then jump into some of the investing lessons we can derive from it.

A New Great Is Born - Can This Indian Cricket Team Rival Australia of 1999-2007?

The Greatest Cricket Team Ever

The Australian Cricket Team that won 3 back to back ODI World Cup titles from 1999 to 2007 are undoubtedly the GOATs - the legends of the game. That Australian team went on to win 34 matches across 4 world cup tournaments, where they won 3 titles. Their only loss between 1999 and 2011 was against Pakistan in Leeds in 1999. Under Steve Waugh's leadership, they bounced back to win six games and tie one in the 1999 World Cup. Ricky Ponting continued this legacy, leading Australia to win 11 consecutive games in both the 2003 and 2007 World Cups, making them the first team to win three straight World Cup titles. In 2011, their streak ended with a loss to Pakistan after going unbeaten for 5 games.

Were there other such winning streaks across the ODI World Cup?

Well nothing really came close to the brilliance and sheer domination of a sport as the Aussies did from 1999 to 2007. But there were a few notable winning streaks by other cricketing nations. The Indian Cricket Team under M.S. Dhoni’s leadership had a 11-game winning streak in 2011 to 2015 editions of the World Cup, where we also won the World Cup in 2011. The West Indies displayed their prowess in the early years of the World Cup, with a 10-game unbeaten run across the 1975 and 1979 tournaments, only to be halted by India in 1983. New Zealand marked their presence in the 2015 World Cup, winning eight consecutive games, including a memorable one-wicket victory over Australia, before losing the final to the Aussies.

Can The Indian Cricket Team Rival Australia of 1999-2007?

We love to compare - it’s only human nature. It could be sacrilegious to even compare the two teams at the moment. Maybe it’s because we are living it right now, that this team feels more dominant and performing at an unprecedented level, and could even surpass the Aussies in 1999 to 2007.

India's ODI team is on a remarkable run. Their recent performance against some of the best cricketing nations such as Australia, South Africa and now New Zealand has shown glimpses of their strength, determination and teamwork. Rohit Sharma's aggressive start, Virat Kohli's record-beating 50th ODI century, Shami’s stupendous wicket taking ability, youngsters stepping up, and a powerful bowling attack led to a convincing win in each match so far. And all this while, the team had lost Hardik Pandya to an injury.

India's dominance in cricket is fueled by a formidable batting lineup with multiple players averaging over 50 in ODIs. Their openers, including Rohit Sharma, set the tone in powerplays, making it challenging for opponents.

Young talents like Shubman Gill and Shreyas Iyer further strengthen India's batting. KL Rahul provides consistency, versatility, and support. Despite concerns at number six and seven, their top seven batsmen, if they bat to their career averages, can produce a formidable total of 330 runs.

India's current strength lies in their pace bowling, considered the world's best, and the spin duo of Ravindra Jadeja and Kuldeep Yadav. They've shown versatility, adapting to different conditions, and their batting lineup, led by an astute leader in Rohit Sharma along with an experienced and determined Virat Kohli, is formidable. Many of the current senior players, who debuted in a World Cup win with some of India’s greats like Sachin Tendulkar, seek to end India's decade-long major event drought and affirm their status as a generational ODI team.

Time will tell if the likes of Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma will etch their names into the history books, but one thing is for certain - their performance up until the final match has been par excellence.

Understand the impact of Cricket and the World Cup on Indian Stock Markets

What do I as an Investor take away from this?

Australia’s streak of 34 wins across 4 World Cups, with just one loss, reflects the importance of consistent performance and strategic resilience - qualities equally crucial in successful investing. Just as Australia adapted to different challenges on the field, built a solid foundation of players that could support their success in the world cup, investors must adapt strategies and build a strong foundation and find the right support to navigate the complexities of financial markets.

An important concept here is having a long term vision for delivering sustained excellence. All these teams that won multiple consecutive games had to invest in the right players early on - Australia had the foresight to do it much earlier than other nations, and that helped each of these countries achieve successes over time. And the BCCI has been working the background building up cricket at the grassroots level to ensure a strong foundation. This long-term approach is the mindset we need as investors as well, so that our investment portfolios can also yield significant cumulative returns across market fluctuations. There are no free lunches and success doesn’t just happen overnight - we need to invest in the right resources, the correct investment research, dedicating time into understanding the market, and finding the right investment advisor that can help you through all of this.

Let’s look at some data and see if this Indian Cricket Team is actually ahead of its competition.

How Far Ahead is the Indian Cricket Team compared to Others This World Cup?

The Indian Express did a detailed analysis and study of the cricket tournament so far. They looked at the strengths and weaknesses of the Indian team compared to the combined performance of South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand (referred to as SAN). Data was broken down into different phases of the game for a comprehensive understanding:

  • 1st Powerplay of 1-10 overs

  • 2nd Powerplay of 11-40 overs

  • Final Powerplay of 41-50 overs

Let's summarize key findings of their analysis:

1. Opening Powerplay (1-10 overs)

  • India: They have excelled in the opening overs, largely due to Rohit Sharma's aggressive approach, setting a high pace from the start.

  • Australia: Comparable to India in terms of aggression, with notable contributions from Travis Head, David Warner, and Mitchell Marsh. They scored 581 runs, just 26 runs shy of India.

  • South Africa: Adopted a contrasting strategy of playing cautiously in the initial overs and relying on power hitters later. They scored the lowest in this phase among the top four teams.

  • New Zealand: Scored 521 runs, showcasing a balanced approach.

Phase of play

India (runs scored on average per game)

Total Wickets lost in the phase

SAN (runs scored on average per game)

Total wickets lost in the phase

1 - 10 overs





11 - 40 overs





41 - 50 overs





2. Middle Overs (11-40 overs):

  • SAN Teams: Made a concerted effort to accelerate scoring. They have been aggressive in this phase but at the cost of losing more wickets.

  • India: Adopted a more conservative strategy, focusing on rotating the strike and waiting for bad balls. This approach could be due to a longer batting tail, necessitating a more cautious approach to maintain momentum.

3. Final Powerplay (41-50 overs):

  • South Africa: Dominated this phase, especially in matches against England, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka, scoring 722 runs.

  • Australia: Scored 513 runs, showing proficiency but not as high as South Africa.

  • New Zealand: Scored the least (453 runs) among the three.

  • India: Batted in this phase in 7 of 9 games, but their average was impacted by finishing games early, particularly against Bangladesh and Australia.

4. Bowling

  • Key Indian Bowlers: Jasprit Bumrah whilst isn’t the leading wicket-taker for India, his presence creates pressure on the opposition. Mohammed Shami has been performing at the highest level (more on him later), and with Mohammed Siraj, they both have been effective in taking wickets and maintaining pressure. Kuldeep Yadav and Ravindra Jadeja provide no respite to the opposing batsman in the middle overs with their spin bowling.

Phase of play

India (wickets picked in each phase)


SAN (wickets picked in each phase)


1 - 10 overs

19 wickets


15 wickets


11 - 40 overs

45 wickets


41 wickets


41 - 50 overs

22 wickets


19 wickets


  • SAN Teams' Performance:

    • South Africa: Marco Jansen's opening bursts have been significant, particularly in pacer-friendly conditions. They have taken more wickets in the initial powerplay than India.

    • Australia: Struggled in the initial overs due to Mitchell Starc's lack of impact. However, they improved in the middle and final phases, with Adam Zampa playing a key role. They excelled in the death overs, taking 24 wickets.

    • New Zealand: Their performance seems balanced but not as dominant in any specific phase

Strategic Insights from Comparing India’s Performance Against Others This World Cup

  • Batting: India's strategy seems tailored to their team composition, with a focus on strong starts and a more measured approach in the middle overs. Each team within the SAN category has its unique approach, with South Africa focusing on preserving wickets early on, Australia being aggressive throughout, and New Zealand balancing between the two approaches.

  • Bowling: India's bowling strength lies in their ability to consistently apply pressure throughout all phases of the game. The SAN teams show varied strengths, with South Africa excelling in the initial overs, Australia making a comeback in later phases, and New Zealand maintaining a balanced approach. Naturally, playing conditions also play a significant role, as seen in Jansen's performance variations based on pitch conditions.

India's impeccable performance in batting & bowling in the first 10 overs seems to be the key to their performance this World Cup. A combination of effective strike bowlers and economical spinners has helped put pressure on the other teams. And our batsman can properly leverage batting conditions when the ball is new, hard and 2 players are outside the ring, and slow it down when the field is more spread out. Looking at the numbers the Indian Team has so far hit all the top metrics and it has shown in the results for the team.

Understand the impact of Cricket and the World Cup on Indian Stock Markets

Virat Kohli Breaking records & Making History: A few investing lessons

A world class great, Virat Kohli has established himself as a record-breaking cricketer in international cricket. Let’s look at some of the key achievements with an investing lens around it:

Setting Goals & Achieving Them: Most ODI Centuries

  • Kohli surpassed Sachin Tendulkar's record of 49 ODI centuries by scoring his 50th century during the World Cup semi-final against New Zealand in Mumbai.

  • Kohli breaking Sachin Tendulkar's record for the most ODI centuries symbolizes setting high goals and achieving them. Investors should set ambitious, yet achievable financial goals, and strive to reach them through smart decision-making.

Consistency & Discipline: Scoring 1,000+ runs over many years

  • He broke another Tendulkar record by scoring over 1000 runs in a calendar year for 8 years (2011-2014, 2017-2019, 2023), surpassing Tendulkar's 7 years.

  • Just like Kohli's consistency in scoring over 1000 runs in multiple years, successful investing requires consistent discipline. Regularly investing, staying informed about market trends, and not being swayed by short-term market fluctuations are key to long-term success.

Persistence & Adaptability: Scoring across different formats

  • Kohli is the joint-fifth fastest to reach 5,000 runs in Tests, achieving this in 138 innings.

  • He became the fastest cricketer to score 13,000 runs in ODIs, taking only 267 innings, compared to Tendulkar's 321 innings.

  • Kohli reached 3500 runs in T20Is in just 96 innings, faster than Martin Guptill and Rohit Sharma.

  • Kohli's ability to adapt his game to different formats (Tests, ODIs, T20Is) mirrors the need for investors to be adaptable. Different market conditions require different strategies, just as different cricket formats require different batting styles.

  • Kohli's knack for converting singles into doubles and pushing for extra runs reflects the importance of persistence and adaptability in investing.

  • To excel in one format is difficult enough, but to excel in all 3 formats consistently over many years is what separates Kohli from the rest. And that is exactly what we as investors need to understand - how can you push yourself and your investments to do better.

  • Investors should continuously seek opportunities to enhance their returns, even in challenging market conditions, and adapt their strategies to optimize performance.

Maximizing Opportunities While Minimizing Risk: High Strike-Rate with Low Boundary Percentage

  • His ODI batting average of 58.58 is the third highest, only behind Ryan Ten Doeschate and Shubman Gill.

  • Scored 44.2% of his runs in boundaries in the match against Pakistan, which is close to his career boundary-run percentage of 44%.

  • Kohli's unbeaten 160 against South Africa in Cape Town in 2018 featured him running 100 of his runs.

  • Kohli's ability to maintain a high strike-rate without relying heavily on higher risk runs such as sixes or fours, is well demonstrated in his innings against Pakistan. We can relate this to the investment strategy of maximizing returns while minimizing risk.

  • Just as Kohli balances boundary shots with quick singles and doubles, investors should balance high-return investments with safer, consistent ones, and ensure stringent risk management practices when investing in the market.

Virat Kohli, similar to Cristiano Ronaldo works on his fitness and preparation to a degree that is at the highest level. Their supreme fitness & mental strength is one of the reasons that both of these legends of their respective games have managed to consistently perform at a World class level. As investors, we need to be

mentally prepared for market volatility, changing market conditions, staying informed and always striving to be better, continuously learning and building ourselves and our investment portfolios up for sustained success over the years.

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Mohammed Shami’s Performance Cannot Be Underestimated

Mohammed Shami's Achievements:

  • First Indian bowler to take 7 wickets in an ODI & achieved it on the biggest stage, the World Cup semi final against New Zealand

  • Delivered a Player of the Match performance in the World Cup semifinal, helping dismantle the New Zealand attack and significantly contribute to India's victory

  • Top Wicket-Taker in the Tournament with 3 fewer matches compared to second top wicket taker Adam Zampa. He has taken 23 wickets so far in the tournament!

  • Surpassed previous best bowling figures by an Indian in ODIs, beating records held by Stuart Binny, Anil Kumble, Jasprit Bumrah, and Mohammed Siraj.

  • Fastest bowler to take 50 wickets in ODI World Cups

  • Surpassed Zaheer Khan’s record of 21 wickets in a single World Cup edition.

Investing Lessons from Mohammed Shami's Achievements:

  • Peak Performance Under Pressure (7 Wickets in a Semifinal): Just as Shami delivered his best under high-pressure conditions and delivered when it was most needed for the Indian team, successful investing often requires maintaining composure and making calculated decisions under pressure, especially during market volatility and changing market conditions.

  • Consistency and Outperformance (Top Wicket-Taker with Fewer Matches): Shami's ability to outperform in fewer matches highlights the importance of consistency and efficiency in investing. This can be likened to achieving better returns with a well-thought-out investment strategy, even with limited resources.

  • Setting and Breaking Records (Surpassing Bowling Records): Shami's record-breaking performances mirror the goal of continuously striving for improvement in investing. This involves setting personal finance goals and working diligently to surpass them.

  • Adapting and Overcoming Setbacks (Recovering from a Dropped Catch): His comeback from an initial setback (dropped catch) to deliver a match-winning performance is akin to the resilience required in investing. It's important to learn from mistakes, adapt strategies, and stay focused on long-term goals.

Read this article on Cricket and Commerce: The Economic Powerplay of the ICC World Cup 2023 in India

5 Key Investing Lessons from India’s Cricket Dominance this World Cup

The Indian cricket team's recent victory over South Africa and New Zealand reflects the team's rigorous training and exceptional skill. Like cricket, investing requires a blend of skill, strategy, and teamwork. Let’s see what we have understood from the Indian cricket team’s performance for effective investment strategies.:

Cricket World Cup Investing Lesson #1: Understand Yourself & The Game

Understanding the financial market is critical for investors. This is similar to how cricketers analyze the pitch and weather conditions before a match. Investors need to assess their financial position, objectives, and risk tolerance to make informed decisions. Investors, much like cricketers, need to understand their risk tolerance, financial goals, and investment timeframe. This understanding helps in tailoring investment strategies to individual needs and circumstances.

Understand your risk tolerance , conduct a thorough portfolio review of all your assets to understand where things stand for you. List down your financial goals and make sure you track them. Interested in a free portfolio review? Get a comprehensive portfolio review here .

Cricket World Cup Investing Lesson #2: Diverse & Balanced Team

Just as a successful cricket team comprises players with varied skills, a strong investment portfolio is diversified across different asset classes. This diversification reduces risk and has the potential to increase returns.

Cricket World Cup Investing Lesson #3: Focus on Your Long-Term Strategy

Regular investing, akin to consistent performance in cricket, is key to building wealth. Investing fixed amounts regularly, regardless of market conditions, can yield significant benefits over time. Both cricket and investing involve navigating uncertainties and challenges. Resilience, patience, and a clear strategy are essential for success in both fields.

Cricket World Cup Investing Lesson #4: Learn from Your Mistakes

Learning from mistakes is crucial in cricket and investing alike. Investors should review past decisions, learn from them, and refine their strategies for better future performance. The investment world, like cricket, is dynamic and requires adaptability. Investors should be prepared to adjust their strategies in response to changing market conditions and personal circumstances.

Cricket World Cup Investing Lesson #5: Find Right Experts & Mentors

Just as cricketers benefit from the guidance of coaches, investors can gain from consulting registered investment advisors. These experts provide insights, guidance, and tailored strategies, helping navigate the complex world of finance. Engaging with these professionals can lead to more informed and effective investment decisions.

An India vs Australia final - a match worthy of 2 great teams. Who are you cheering for? Can the Indian Cricket Team achieve greatness? Will the men in blue bring it home? 1.4 Billion hearts are beating faster as we approach 2pm today - no pressure!

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