When Donald Bradman finished his Test career with 29 centuries, it seemed like a record that would never be broken. However, Sunil Gavaskar eclipsed it first and 11 other batters in the format’s history went on to score 30 or more Test centuries. 

Sachin Tendulkar holds the record for the fastest batter to reach 30 Test centuries. The Indian legend managed to reach the landmark in just 159 innings and Australian batter Steve Smith came close to beating that record, having scored his 30th century in 162 innings. 

Here are the batters who were the fastest to reach 30 Test centuries

Fastest to 30 Test centuries



Innings taken

Sachin Tendulkar



Steve Smith 



Matthew Hayden



Ricky Ponting



Sunil Gavaskar



Sachin Tendulkar (India) - 159 innings

The leading run-scorer in international cricket history, Sachin Tendulkar scored his 30th Test century against England in 2002. In Headingley, the Master Blaster smashed 193 off 330 balls, falling just short of an iconic double century in his 99th Test match. 

Steve Smith (Australia) - 162 innings

The latest addition to the 30 tons club, Steve Smith had a field day against the South African bowlers at the Sydney Cricket Ground. He scored 104 off 192 deliveries, which includes 11 fours and two sixes. This was Smith’s third century in his last 10 innings in the longest format. 

Matthew Hayden (Australia) - 167 innings

Matthew Hayden emerged with a terrific century in Adelaide against India during the Asian side’s visit in 2007-08. Hayden scored 103 runs in 200 deliveries, becoming the fastest Aussie to reach 30 Test centuries at that time. 

Ricky Ponting (Australia) - 170 innings

Aussie stalwart Ricky Ponting was a run machine in his day and he became the second Australian batter to complete 30 Test centuries after Steve Waugh. He got to the landmark against South Africa in Durban, 2006, where he scored centuries in both the innings of the Test. 

Sunil Gavaskar (India) - 174 innings

Sunil Gavaskar was the first cricketer to score 30 Test centuries. He reached the landmark against West Indies when the Caribbean side visited India in 1993-94, breaking Don Bradman’s long-standing record of most centuries in the format.

Photo Credit: Alamy