Hashim Amla has made a meteoric rise up the batting rankings in both Test match and ODI cricket over the course of the past 4 years. He has scored 15 of his 16 Test match centuries during that period and another 10 in the limited overs format.
He has developed something of a love affair with the country of his ancestors during that period, making 4 Test centuries in India. Three of these came in the 2010 series when he made what was then a career best 253 not out in the Proteas’ win by an innings at Nagpur and then another two in the following match at Eden Gardens, coincidentally the ground on which he made his Test debut in 2004.
He thus became the 5th South African and the third of the modern era to score centuries in both innings of a Test match. Not surprisingly these feats saw him named SA Cricketer of the Year for 2010. He was also selected for the ICC Test Team of the Year in 2011 and again in 2012.
He has just come off an outstanding tour of England during which he became the first South African to score a Test match treble hundred and was named Man of the Series in both the Test matches and the ODIs.
His rise to the top in the ODI format has been stunning by any standards. He only got the chance to get into the SA one-squad for the Indian tour of 2010 when Graeme Smith was ruled out by injury and he has been a first choice ever since. On the tour to the West Indies later that year he scored 2 centuries and became the first Protea to have an aggregate of more than 400 runs in a five-match series. He currently has the best average and the third best career strike rate of those Proteas who have scored more than 1 000 runs and has been ranked No. 1 ODI batsman for a considerable period of time.
He has an average of 50 in Test cricket and 60 in ODIs and scored his 3 000th ODI run in England 12 matches quicker than anybody else in the history of this format.
At the start of the 2011-12 season he was named vice-captain of both the ODI and T20 teams and led the Proteas in the ODI series against Australia.