The Twenty-20 (T20) format is the shortened format of the game. It was introduced by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) in 2003. Meanwhile, since its release, it became a hot topic of discussion among cricket fans and gained huge popularity. The T20 cricket is filled with thrilling and nail-biting battles between bat and ball, with the immense popularity of T20 Internationals many countries started organizing their T20 leagues.
The T20 format of the game is finished in comparatively less time and is known as a batsman-dominated game, As batters try to smash most of the balls for the boundary and play the free flow cricket, to put as many runs as they can in the 20 overs. However, if bowlers have to stop the batsmen they need to be very accurate with their line and length otherwise the ball will only end up getting smashed for a boundary.
Bowlers play a huge role in the 20-over format, if a team has a fragile bowling unit that ends up leaking a lot of runs, it will eventually put pressure on batsmen, and the team will already be on the back foot.
With the T20 World Cup approaching, we will go through the list of bowlers who have picked the most number of T20 International wickets in their career so far.
5 Bowlers With The Most Wickets In T20 Internationals
5. Rashid Khan- 95 T20 International Wickets
The young Afghanistan bowling sensation Rashid Khan is arguably the best leg-spinner of the current generation. Rashid Khan just loves playing cricket and he plays the game with full dedication, even during the pandemic era he participated in every T20 League and other cricket happening in the world without taking a break, which shows his passion for the game.
Rashid possesses extremely good leg-spin bowling skills, and he traps batters with his googly and leg-spin deliveries. Rashid is just 22-year-old and already has established himself as one of the best bowlers in T20 International cricket.
So far Rashid Khan has played 51 T20I games and has picked 95 wickets at an average of 12.63 and an Economy of 6.21. Meanwhile, he has picked these wickets with an exceptional strike rate of 12.10. Also, Rashid Khan has two 5-wickets hauls under his belt in T20 Internationals.
4. Shahid Afridi- 98 T20 International Wickets
The former Pakistan all-rounder Shahid Afridi is undoubtedly one of the greatest players from team Pakistan to play T20 Internationals. He was one of his kind players and he had incredible leg-spin bowling skills alongside explosive batting skills. Although he played his last T20I game in 2018, still he had done a lot to see his name in the list of 5 bowlers with the most T20 International wickets.
Shahid Afridi missed a century of T20I games by the mark of one as he represented team Pakistan in 99 T20Is. He was given the opportunity to ball in 97 innings in which he bagged 98 wickets at an average of 24.44 and an Economy of 6.63. Also, Afridi was able to pick three 4-wicket hauls in his marvelous career.
3. Tim Southee – 99 T20 International Wickets
Timothy Grant Southee popularly known as Tim Southee is unarguably one of the most underrated T20 Bowler. Many don’t consider him good enough for the shorter format of the game. However, the Kiwi bowler has shut his critics up with his sensational performance in the game. He has already completed the century of wickets in One Day Internationals and Tests cricket. Meanwhile, soon he will complete this enormous milestone in T20I cricket as well.
Tim Southee has represented the New Zealand national cricket team in 83 T20 internationals games bowling in 81 innings scalping 99 wickets an average of 25.17 and an economy of 8.39. His bowling strike in T20I cricket is 18.00. Also, he has bagged a five-wicket haul and a 4-wicket haul in Twenty-20 cricket.
2. Shakib Al Hasan – 104 T20 International Wickets
The 34-year-old Bangladesh all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan is undoubtedly among the greatest all-rounders of all time. Many experts believe that Shakib is the unarguably best player produced by Bangladesh cricket.
Shakib is an all-format player and is equally effective in all three of them both with bat and ball. With his slow left-arm orthodox bowling skills on slow pitches, he becomes a deadly bowler. Meanwhile, he can smash boundary from the very first ball and change the course of the match.
Shakib Al Hasan is on the verge of becoming the highest wicket-taker in T20 Internationals. He has represented Bangladesh in 85 T20 Internationals and has 104 wickets under his belt.
Notably, he is the only second player to pick 100 wickets in the T20Is. Shakib has picked his T20 Internationals wickets at an average of 20.33 economy of 6.74 and strike rate of 18.00. Also, the 34-year-old has four 4-wicket hauls and one 5-wicket haul under his belt.
1. Lasith Malinga – 107 T20 International Wickets
Lasith Malinga is one of the greatest white-ball bowlers of all time. He brought a lot of variations with him paired with his fierce and Unorthodox bowling action made him a deadly bowler. Malinga had constant run-ins with injuries which led to him becoming less effective. However, he still holds enormous records and had a great and successful international career.
He announced his retirement from Test cricket in 2011. Meanwhile, he quit ODI in 2019. However, he continued to play T20 Internationals and other T20 leagues in the World. Meanwhile, Malinga is still made himself available to play the T20 World Cup 2021 which is scheduled to begin on October 17 in UAE. However, there is a question mark over his participation as he might not be fully fit to compete.
Coming back to his successful T20I career. Malinga became the first-ever bowler to pick 100 wickets in T20 Internationals. He currently sits at the top of the T20I wickets tally with 107 wickets under his belt. The 38-year-old has picked his wickets at an average of 20.79 economy of 7.42 and strike rate of 16.80. He also has bagged 2 five-wicket hauls in his career.
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