Who's scored the most runs in ODI cricket since 1971?

From Sri Lanka to England, from India to the West Indies, the very first cricket ODI (One Day Internationals) took place in 1971. But since then, which player has scored the most runs, total?

Someone else entirely?

We decided to find out. We've compiled the cumulative number of runs for all players in the ODI, every year since 1971 to 2019.

Find out who scored the most runs in the bar chart race video below

How did we do it? holds the stats for number of runs per player, every player, starting from 1971 - this is our starting place too.

Using Python's powerful BeautifulSoup web scraping library, we wrote a script that would traverse the tables on each year's web page, grab the relevant data (in this case, the name of the player and their number of runs scored), and then move onto the the next year.

1971 to 1972 to 1973... to 2018 to 2019.

With all the data scraped and saved in lovely clean .csv files, the next step was to do a spot of data transformation. As we're showing cumulative opposed to individual counts, we had to stack up each player's runs each year they played. For this, we used another powerful Python library called Pandas.

With all the data now in the right mathematical format, it was time for the fun part: visualising the data. Using a similar technique to our Game of Thrones Bar Chart Race published earlier this year, we passed our .csv to a JavaScript (D3.js) program which essentially does the following:

  1. Convert the .csv to .json

  2. For 1971, create a horizontal bar chart for the top 10 highest scoring cricketers

  3. For the following year, do the same

  4. Animate the steps between the first and second bar chart (an animation technique called 'tweening')

  5. Repeat this tweening for every year and every bar chart in the dataset

  6. Add some cool, epic music that you might hear during a sporting event

  7. If you have any ideas for other bar chart races, let us know below.

By Jack Merlin Bruce (@JackMerlinBruce)
Data Visualisation Designer at Type A Media

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I’m Ross Tavendale, the managing director of Type A Media, a creative search agency based in London. I make videos about business leadership, web technology, SEO, PPC and how I turned being a Type A personality into a business.


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