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5 bowlers who were dominant for a short span of time

Geoff Allott was brilliant in the 1999 World Cup

The ability to perform consistently is what separates the great players from the good ones. Most of the finest cricketers of all time, be it batsmen and bowlers, are known to hit numerous purple patches in their respective careers which helped them achieve unprecedented success.

On the contrary, though, there have been players who came up with exceedingly good performances during a certain period in their careers but failed to replicate them at other times. As a result of this, they were unable to become as successful as they were expected to be.

Here are 5 bowlers who dominated for a short span of time:

5. Geoff Allott (New Zealand)

Former New Zealand fast bowler Geoff Allott had a brief career for his national side which lasted a little under 5 years. Although he played 10 Tests, he was more of a 50-over specialist and represented the Kiwis in 31 ODIs, claiming 52 wickets at an average of 23.21.

Allott's biggest claim to fame was the 1999 ICC World Cup where he became the first bowler ever to break the 20-wicket barrier in a single edition of the tournament. In fact, the pacer was in tremendous form throughout the year and grabbed 34 wickets in 17 ODIs.

However, his form dipped badly in the year that followed and Geoff Allott was not seen on the international cricketing scene again.

4. Ryan Sidebottom (England)

Ryan Sidebottom did exceedingly well in Tests for a while

Ryan Sidebottom is a former England fast bowler who represented his country between the years 2001 and 2010. During his career, the left-arm pacer played 22 Tests, 25 ODIs and 18 T20Is and performed quite decently. However, he was never able to cement his spot in the national team and eventually faded away.

However, there was a short phase in his career when Sidebottom was at his dominant best in Test cricket. In the 8 Tests that he played in 2008, the grizzly-haired swing bowler picked up a staggering 47 wickets, which included 4 five-wicket hauls and best innings figures of 7 for 47.

The next couple of years saw Ryan Sidebottom take part in just 4 Tests where he could manage as few as 3 wickets.

3. Nathan Bracken (Australia)

Bracken was one of the best ODI bowlers at one point

Left-arm seamer Nathan Bracken had a moderately successful ODI career for Australia which saw him claim 174 wickets in 116 matches at an average of just over 24. He also played for his country in 5 Tests but was unable to create much of an impression. Apart from that, Bracken also played 19 T20Is in Australian colours.

The New South Wales played his best cricket from 2006 to 2008, a time when he was considered to be among the best in the 50-over format. Bracken picked up 113 wickets during this phase and contributed majorly to Australia’s 2006 Champions Trophy and 2007 World Cup triumphs.

In the year 2009, though, his performance dropped and he could muster just 26 wickets in 24 ODIs. To add to it, recurring knee injuries also plagued his career and Bracken was unable to find his way back to international cricket.

2. Irfan Pathan (India)

Pathan took Indian cricket by storm early on in his career

Irfan Pathan has been off the Indian selectors’ radar for quite a few years now but he did have a decent career prior to that. Pathan has represented India in 29 Tests, 120 ODIs and 24 T20Is and was an important part of the team which won the 2007 World Twenty20.

There was a time in his career when the Baroda left-armer was marked for greatness as a Test bowler. Between the years 2004 and 2005, Irfan Pathan claimed 72 wickets in as few as 17 Test matches including 6 five-wicket hauls and also a famous hat-trick against Pakistan to his name.

However, a variety of factors combined to bring about Pathan’s downfall in the subsequent years and he has struggled to make it back ever since.

1. Ajantha Mendis (Sri Lanka)

Batsmen found it impossible to pick Mendis in his early days

One of the known mystery spinners to have played international cricket, Sri Lanka’s Ajantha Mendis has had a decent career for his home side so far. In 87 ODI matches, Mendis has taken 152 wickets and has another 70 wickets in 19 Tests. Apart from that, he has also enjoyed success in T20I cricket, too, with 66 wickets in 39 games.

The off-spinner made a dream start to his career in the 50-over format and reached dizzy heights of success in his very first year. In 18 matches, Mendis claimed as many as 48 ODI wickets at an average of slightly over 10 and best figures of 6 for 13 against India in the 2008 Asia Cup final.

Ajantha Mendis has not been able to replicate his incredible performance in 2008 over the course of his career so far and it looks unlikely that it will happen again as he is not a part of the Sri Lankan team.

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Edited by Staff Editor
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