The greatest T20 player: De Villiers or McCullum? Pollard or Raina?
Who has been the best so far in cricket's newest format? You get to decide
We are into the round of 16. Here's the first set of match-ups. The player with more votes in each match-up progresses to the quarter-finals.
Note: Voting closes at 6.30am GMT on Monday, April 20. Click here to reload the page if the polls don't load for you automatically.
AB de Villiers v Brendon McCullum
AB de Villiers
Runs 8657 Ave 37.15 SR 149.77
Catches as keeper 41 Stumpings 17
AB de Villiers' brilliance lies not just in the runs he's scored but the manner of their accumulation; this format has never seen a player as stupendously talented as the South African. If T20 cricket is the format where batsmen are free to show the extent of their capabilities, de Villiers took what that really meant to a different level. No one with over 3000 runs has a better career strike rate at the IPL than his 151.23, and he has enjoyed personal success in T20 franchises around the world. His international career has been slightly more mixed, even if he's the second highest run-scorer for South Africa. A 28-ball 69 against England at the 2014 T20 World Cup set up a classic win; he led that side to the semi-finals. However, he hasn't quite won the T20 trophies you'd expect for a player of his calibre, having played for sides that have historically struggled in that department. South Africa aside, he has turned out for the Delhi Daredevils and the Royal Challengers Bangalore, two famously unsuccessful teams in the IPL, and for the ill-fated Lahore Qalandars in the Pakistan Super League.
Runs 9922 Ave 29.97 SR 136.49
Catches as keeper 41 Stumpings 14
Brendon McCullum's 158* on the IPL's opening night in 2008 is perhaps the most iconic T20 innings, and undoubtedly its most significant: just in case anybody had not been paying attention on a momentous night, McCullum made sure they were, and his blistering innings remained the format's highest individual score for another five years. His impact went beyond one innings, though - his blitzkrieg aggression as an opener set the template for top-order power-hitting, and success followed in T20Is and leagues across the world. He excelled as a captain and in the field, both riding the boundary and in the ring, and was the format's second-leading run-scorer at the time of his retirement in 2019.
Kieron Pollard v Suresh Raina
Runs 10,000 Ave 30.86 SR 150.57
Wickets 279 Ave 24.36 ER 8.20
A pioneer and a legend, Pollard became the first man to play 500 T20s and the second to reach the landmark of 10,000 runs in the format in March this year. He leapt into the limelight with this performance, and has gone on to establish himself as a T20 superstar. Pollard has had a glittering career which has seen him win a T20 World Cup, four IPLs, two Champions League T20s, a CPL and a BPL. A trailblazer in his decision to turn down a West Indies central contract to further his freelance career, Pollard has paved the way for cricketers to succeed both in sporting and financial terms regardless of their birthplace. He is a merciless six-hitter, with more sixes than fours across his career, and opposition teams know that a game is never won if he is yet to bat. Throw in his useful medium pace, remarkable boundary-line fielding and calm captaincy, and Pollard is a true short-form legend.
Runs 8392 Ave 32.65 SR 138.02
Wickets 53 Ave 34.60 ER 7.23
Suresh Raina, second on the list of top IPL run-scorers, built his T20 reputation as a mainstay at No. 3 for the Chennai Super Kings, with his run-scoring consistency making him a sure-shot in the team XI - he played a record 158 consecutive matches for the franchise. Three-time IPL and two-time Champions League T20 winner. When CSK was banned for two years, he took over captaincy at the Gujarat Lions. Raina played in India's first ever T20I, in 2006, but didn't make the 2007 T20 World Cup squad. He featured in the next five editions, scoring India's first T20I hundred in 2010. Usually a steady accumulator, there were moments when Raina could blitz opposition attacks, like against Kings XI Punjab in in 2013. And on turning tracks, he was a back-up bowling option relied upon by MS Dhoni. Thanks for voting. Keep track of the greatest T20 player bracket here.