Best of 2019: Pacers reigned supreme in a year for the bowlers
- Revisiting the amazing year the bowlers had in ODIs in 2019 with pacers in particular ruling the record books.
2019 has been a year of extraordinary cricketing proportions in the light of the ICC Cricket World Cup played in England. The year saw some amazing cricketing talents on display in the mega event amidst jaw-dropping performances which culminated into an epic, yet controversial, summit clash between the top two sides of the tournament. Though the game of cricket has predominantly been a batsman-friendly setup, we saw some inspiring performances from the bowlers across fromats.
The year saw 3 hat-tricks in ODIs including 2 in the ICC World Cup along with double hat-tricks from Afghanistnan's Rashid Khan and Sri Lankan legend Lasith Malinga. Mitchell Starc dominated the World Cup with 27 wickets under his belt in a tournament that saw only fast bowlers in the top 10 wicket-takers' list. Here, we take a look at the stats and some of the performances in a year that was dominated by the bowlers.
Pacers ruling the roost
2019 will arguably be remembered as the year for the bowlers, pacers in particular. Indian speedster Mohammad Shami was the pick of the bowlers picking up 42 wickets in 21 innings while the Kiwi duo of Trent Boult and Lockie Ferguson were 2nd and 3rd in the list, picking up 38 and 35 wickets respectively. Bangladesh’s Mustafizur Rahman, with 34, and India’s Bhuvneshwar Kumar with 33 scalps rounded the top 5 of the year.
The pacers’ domination can be judged from the fact that amongst the top 10 wicket-takers throughout the year, 8 have been fast bowlers and only 2 were spinners - a complete contrast from 2018 when spinners dominated across the globe. The performances of the fast bowlers becomes even more astonishing in the World Cup, with all of the top 10 including only the quicks.
Three Hat-Tricks in ODIs
Amidst the strong skill-set on display, 2019 some inspiring performances including hat-trick by the bowlers. The hat-trick count was kicked off by Indian speedster Mohammad Shami, when he picked up 3 wickets in a row to seal the game for the Indians in a tricky finish against the Afghans. He dismissed Mohammad Nabi, Aftab Alam, and Mujeeb-ur-Rahman.
Kiwi pacer Trent Boult picked up a hat-trick against Australia dismissing Usman Khawaja, Mitchell Starc and Jason Behrendorff to cap off his second such feat in ODI cricket. Indian spinner Kuldeep Yadav, in an otherwise ordinary year as per his standards, made a mark against the West Indies when he picked up a hat-trick at a crucial stage, accounting for the trio of Shai Hope, Jason Holder, and Alzarri Joseph.
The year also 2 double hat-trick in T20 cricket by Rashid Khan and Lasith Malinga. Sri Lankan speedster Malinga turned back the clock against the Kiwis when he picked up 4 wickets in 4 balls, a feat he achieved during the 2007 ICC World Cup against South Africa. Rashid Khan did his doubel hat-trick against Ireland in Dehradun. He became the first bowler to bag four wickets off successive deliveries in Twenty20 Internationals.
Published 29 Dec 2019, 15:27 IST