Five-time winners of the Cricket World Cup, Australia unsurprisingly top the list of most ODI wins by a team with 597 victories in 986 matches played.
The concept of 50-over cricket is fairly new in the history of cricket given that the first ODI match took place between Australia and England at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in 1971. Since then One Day cricket has come a long way with over 4000 ODI matches played so far.
Playing ODI cricket isn’t easy as it tests a player’s fitness and determination along with skills and patience. The ODI World Cups have also become a staple in the cricket world and winning the world cup counts as one of the highest achievements in the sport.
Only ODI-playing nations are able to compete in the 50-over World Cups that are held every four years. So far, only six teams have been able to lift the World Cup trophy and the next ODI World Cup is scheduled for 2023. Currently, the ICC recognizes only 12 nations and has granted them permanent ODI status.
Without much ado, let’s jump on to the top 10 list of most ODI wins by a team:
Most ODI wins by a team: Top 10 list
Australian Cricket Team | 597 wins
The Australian Cricket Team holds the record for winning the most matches in the history of One Day International cricket. They have won 597 of their 986 matches so far and are the most successful team in the format. Australia played the very first ODI match in the history of international cricket against England on January 5, 1971.
Australia are also five-time winners of the ODI World Cup having lifted the trophy in 1987, 1999, 2003, 2007, and most recently in 2015. Their contribution to the One Day format has been incredible and two of its captains Ricky Ponting also hold the record for winning the most ODI matches as captains.
Australia also have the second-highest win percentage in One Day cricket having won 60.54% of their matches so far.
Indian Cricket Team | 547 wins
India played its first ODI match on July 13, 1974, with the first encounter held against England. Team India hold the record of playing the most number of matches in ODI history, having appeared in 1008 matches at the time of writing.
The Men in Blue have won two ODI World Cups in 1983 and on home soil in 2011. Kapil Dev and Mahendra Singh Dhoni were the respective captains to guide India to World Cup successes.
Indian legend Sachin Tendulkar holds the record for scoring the most runs and smashing the most centuries in this format. He had amassed 18,426 runs over his career, which included 49 centuries! Virat Kohli is not too far behind with 12,344 runs from 262 matches so far, that also includes 43 ODI centuries.
Pakistan Cricket Team | 508 wins
Pakistan are third on the list of most ODI wins by a team with 508 successes in 961 matches. They have been playing ODI cricket since February 1973 with their first assignment in this format arriving against New Zealand who were also playing 50-over cricket for the first time.
Pakistan won the World Cup for the first time in 1992 when current Prime Minister Imran Khan captained the team. The Asian side is also credited with leading the fast bowling revolution in this format with two of its greatest exponents Wasim Akram (502 wickets) and Waqar Younis (416 wickets) included in the top three of the highest wicket-takers in ODI history.
Shoaib Akhtar also holds the record for the fastest delivery in ODI history when he sent down a ball measured at 161.3 km/h against England at the 2003 ODI World Cup.
West Indies Cricket Team | 418 wins
West Indies were the first team to win an ODI World Cup and were dominant powerhouses during the 70s and 80s. They have lifted the trophy twice, consecutively in 1975 and 1979. The likes of Sir Viv Richards, Curtly Ambrose, Brian Lara, Chris Gayle, and Courtney Walsh forever changed the landscape of One Day cricket with their majestic and incredible performances.
Having played their first match in this format against England in 1973, West Indies have won 418 of their 867 matches in history so far.
Sri Lanka Cricket Team | 413 wins
Sri Lanka have been playing ODI cricket since 1982 following their first match against England that year. Having won 413 of their 900 matches, few teams have had as big an impact on the course of this format as Sri Lanka.
Three Sri Lankan players – Kumar Sangakkara, Sanath Jayasuriya, and Mahela Jayawardene – are in the list of the top five run-scorers in this format, with each of them scoring over 12,500 ODI runs during their careers.
Even the list of the highest wicket-takers is led by the brilliant Muttiah Muralitharan who has taken 534 wickets in 350 ODI matches while Chaminda Vaas is the fourth highest wicket-taker in ODI history. Sri Lanka won the World Cup for the first and only time in their history under the leadership of Arjuna Ranatunga in 1996.
Sanath Jayasuriya and Romesh Kalruwithana are also credited for innovating the approach to batting in this format with their aggressive approach in the powerplays during the 1996 ODI World Cup proving revolutionary.
South Africa Cricket Team | 402 wins
South Africa began playing ODI cricket as late as 1991 when India toured the country during the 1991-1992 season. That tour proved to be extremely significant given that it was South Africa’s first official international cricket series since their suspension from cricket in 1970 due to the infamous Apartheid policy.
South Africa have won 402 of their 659 matches and their win percentage of 63.56 is the highest in the top 10 list of most ODI wins by a team. Players like Shaun Pollock, AB De Villiers, Hashim Amla, and Jacques Kallis rank among the greatest players in One Day International history.
Jacques Kallis is famously the eighth-highest run-scorer in ODI history and the 19th-highest wicket-taker which truly summarised his incredible capabilities as an all-rounder. Meanwhile, De Villiers holds the record for the fastest century in ODI history, taking only 31 deliveries to get to the three-figure mark. Despite all these achievements, South Africa are yet to win their maiden World Cup in this format.
England Cricket Team | 396 wins
The England Cricket team has been playing ODIs since 1971 following the inaugural clash with Australia in Melbourne. They laid their hands on the ODI World Cup trophy for the first time in 2019 after beating New Zealand on home soil in a controversial final.
Having played 785 matches, England have won 396 games so far. They have been particularly dominant in this format since Eoin Morgan was appointed as the white-ball captain in 2015 and the team adopted a modern approach to ODI cricket with stress being put on aggressive batting.
Eoin Morgan, Kevin Pietersen, Alastair Cook and James Anderson are arguably the best cricketers for England to have played in this format.
New Zealand Cricket Team | 372 wins
The World Cup final loss against England at the Lord’s in 2019 continues to be a painful memory in the history of New Zealand cricket who are still awaiting their maiden World Cup triumph. New Zealand have played 811 matches in the 50-over format, winning 374 of those.
Captain Daniel Vettori who is the highest wicket-taker for New Zealand in ODI cricket and Ross Taylor, Martin Guptill, Steven Fleming, and Kane Williamson are some of the most influential names for the country in this format.
Bangladesh Cricket Team | 154 wins
In the top 10 list, Bangladesh was the latest country to join ODI cricket after playing its first matches against Kenya in October 1997. They have also played the fewest matches among all the teams so far, having appeared in only 400 encounters, out of which they have won 144.
Bangladesh’s best result in an ODI World Cup was a quarter-final finish in the 2015 ICC World Cup. While Tamim Iqbal and Mushfiqur Rahim are the highest scorers for Bangladesh in ODIs, Shakib Al Hasan is arguably the greatest cricketer to emerge out of the country having left his impact with both the bat as well as the ball.
Zimbabwe Cricket Team | 151 wins
Zimbabwe have won the least number of matches among all the teams in the top list of most ODI wins by a team. They have won just 151 matches having played 566 games and have the lowest win percentage of 26.67%.
Zimbabwe, once led by the magnificent talents of Andy Flower, Grant Flower, and Heath Streak among others, are a shadow of what they used to be. They’ve also never won a World Cup before.
Which team has won the most T20I matches?
Pakistan, with 117 wins, have won the most T20I matches in history.
Who holds the record for winning the most number of Test matches?
Australia have won 400 Test matches, which is the record for most wins by a team playing in the purest format of the sport.
Which team has the best winning percentage in ODI cricket?
Having won 63.56% of their matches, South Africa just edge past Australia to hold the record for the best winning percentage in ODI cricket.
Which team has played the most ODI matches?
Team India has played more matches than anyone else in ODI history with 1008 appearances to their name.
Who holds the record for the most ODI wins as captain?
Ricky Ponting holds the record for winning the most ODIs as captain of a team after leading Australia to 165 victories between 2002 and 2012.