Cape Town - Legendary former Australian spinner Shane Warne has listed the 10 best batsmen he has either seen or played with or against.
Warne, who played 145 Tests for Australia between 1992 and 2007, expressed his views via a column for the Daily Telegraph.
Two South Africans cracked the nod on Warne’s list, with Jacques Kallis ranked at No 7 and AB de Villiers and No 9.
A pair of West Indian legends, Viv Richards and Brian Lara, are ranked in the top two spots, followed by India’s Sachin Tendulkar.
A trio of Australians - Greg Chappell, Ricky Ponting and Allan Border - are next in line, while England’s Graham Gooch also makes the list.
The two men who currently occupy the top two spots on the ICC rankings for Test batsmen - Australia’s Steve Smith and India’s Virat Kohli - are jointly picked at No 10 on the list.
"I don't assess greatness by stats, but rather by the way someone played the game, the way they influenced results and the impact they had on all of us. That's how we remember our heroes,” Warne wrote.
"To me a great batsman has to have made a hundred in three key countries: in England, against the Duke ball on seaming and swinging pitches; in Australia, on our fast-paced, bouncy tracks; and of course, in the dust bowls of India, on pitches that spin and spit."
Regarding Smith and Kohli, Warne said: "To me Steve Smith is the best Test batsman in the world. Virat Kohli is the best across all three formats of the game, but across five days, Steve Smith is the man. The hole in Kohli’s CV on the Test match stage is in England and the pressure is on the fiery but very likeable Indian to carry over some double-ton magic from home soil to that country when his team tours next year."
Shane Warne’s 10 best batsmen:
1. Viv Richards
2. Brian Lara
3. Sachin Tendulkar
4. Greg Chappell
5. Ricky Ponting
6. Allan Border
7. Jacques Kallis
8. Graham Gooch
9. AB de Villiers
10. Steve Smith/Virat Kohli