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Bowling Records in Test and ODI Cricket

by on August 19, 2009
in Best of the Best, Records

Brief test cricket bowling records

There have been many stirring deeds in first class cricket on the green fields the world over. Many have been the proud player, who has acknowledged the cheers and ovations of the spectators after performing splendidly. to have his name recorded in the record book. Perhaps, later, these very players would add their cheers to another who has just surpassed the latest record which was theirs a few moments ago. Such is the life of the cricketer: today a holder of records, tomorrow a “has-been”.


The first recognized Test match was played in 1877. Since then there have been nearly 2,000 Tests played by 11 teams and in 1956, England spin bowler Jim Laker took 19 wickets for 90 runs which set not only the Test record for best match figures but also the first-class one. Laker’s second innings analysis of 10-53 was the first occasion of a bowler taking all ten wickets in a Test match innings and they remain the best innings figures.

The most successive maiden over in a Test is 21, by the Indian slow left-armed batsman  Bapu Nadkarni, in the first Test against England in Madras in 1963-64, Nadkarni bowled 131 successive dot-balls in that spell, but that didn’t break the Test record, which remains 137, by the South African off spinner Hugh Tayfield against England in Durban in 1956-57., so Tayfield managed “only” 16 maidens in that spell, which spanned both innings.

McGain, also known “Mr. Magoo”, had figures of 0-102 from 11 over. This has put the leg-spinner on pace for the world record in a Test innings for worst economy rate (minimum 60 balls).

The record for most wickets in a career is held by Muttiah Muralitharan of taking 770 wickets in 127 matches which is a remarkable achievement and also maintains the top position in the ICC top100 bowlers ranking.

The best career average record is held by one of the greatest bowlers of all time George Lehmann with an average of 10.75 bowling 3830 bowls in his test career and taking 112 wickets.

Brief ODI Cricket bowling records

The new millennium has seen quite a few outstanding bowling performances – a pleasant turnaround from the run-feasts that One-Day cricket has made us accustomed to, many records have been set in cricket over the years. Here are a few.

1. A record was set by Vivian Richards for 5ive wickets and 100 runs in the same match in a One Day International. Richards was the only player to take 5 wickets in a one day innings and score a hundred. This was accomplished against New Zealand in Dunedin in 1886/87. He took 5/41.
2. Another record for hat trick on two occasions in a One day International was set by Wasim Akram and Saqlain Mushtaq of Pakistan, the only two bowlers to have taken a hat trick on two occasions.
3. The record held for the Most Economical Bowling Figures in an ODI belongs to the West Indies opening batsman Phil Simmons. He holds the record for the most economical bowling figures against Pakistan at Sydney where he brought in figures of 10-8-3-4.
4. The record for the Highest Wickets Spinner in an ODI belongs to Indian Anil Kumble who holds the record of 274 wickets.
5. With 71 wickets from 39 matches at an average of 18.19 and economy rate of 3.96, Glenn McGrath holds the record for the maximum wickets at the World Cup.
6. Imran Khan of Pakistan has the best bowling average at the World Cup. His 34 wickets from 28 matches have given him 19.26 per wicket.
7. Andy Roberts has the lowest economy rate at the World Cup. His 170.1 overs has cost him 552 runs at an economy rate of 3.24 per over.
8. Glenn McGrath of Australia holds the record for the best bowling figure at the World Cup. He took 7/15 against Namibia at the 2003 World Cup in South Africa.
9. Imran Khan has taken a wicket in every 29. 9 balls, which is the record for the best strike rate at the World Cup.
10. Chaminda Vaas of Sri Lanka has taken the maximum wickets at any World Cup. He took 23 wickets from 10 matches at the 1999 World Cup.
11. Winston Davis of the West Indies took 7/51 against Australia at the 1983 World Cup. This is the best bowling figure on debut at the World Cup.
12. Chetan Sharma of India became the first bowler at the World Cup to take a hat trick. He achieved this feat against New Zealand at the 1987 World Cup. After him, Saqlain Mushtaq (Pakistan), Chaminda Vaas (Sri Lanka) and Brett Lee (Australia) have recorded hat tricks at the World Cup.

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