In Twenty20 format the bowlers must have an art of taking wickets and controlling the runs, not letting the opponents to make huge scores. They have to be consistent with their line and lengths. Bowling in last few overs, known as death over bowling is a great art as the batsmen would be in killing mood hitting sixes and fours. Spinners will have a task cut out while playing T20s as the batsmen usually target the spinners more than the pacers. Adding to their misery is that now-a-days, the sport is being played with shortened boundaries and the wickets too are batsmen friendly. Still there are quite a handful of spinners who managed to perform well in the format. Here we look at the Top 5 modern day spinners in this format.
1. Samuel Badree (West Indies)
Samuel Badree, a West Indian leggie has been playing domestic cricket for Trinidad and Tobago since 2001 and caught the people’s eye with some brilliant performances in the 2011 Champions League T20. He made his T20 debut for West Indies in June 2012. He is currently the number one ranked bowler after a successful T20 campaign in the ICC World Cup 2014. He bowls the quicker one, does not give room to the batsmen and often opens the bowling for his side. Picking up 4 wickets for only 15 runs is his best T20 figures. He bowls at an economy of 5.39 runs per over which is great for a spin bowler. He played for Chennai Super Kings in the 2014 season but did not get more than 2 matches on Indian soil.
2. Sunil Narine (West Indies)
Sunil Narine, once again from West Indies is a mystery spinner and has proved it on numerous occasions. Because of his height and high arm action, he keeps the batsmen guessing on his variations and outsmarts the batsmen on majority of the occasions. His bowling gives the captain a much needed relief especially in death overs .He delivers for the team when badly required. He plays for Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League. He has played for 6 different franchises in the T20 format. His best figures were picking 4 wickets giving only 12 runs over all. For KKR his best figure is picking up 5 wickets giving away 19 runs. He is number 2 in the rankings at the moment.
3. Sachithra Senanayake (Sri Lanka)
Sachitra Senanayake an off spinner has played for 4 franchises in T20 format. He made his T20 debut in 2012 against Pakistan. He bowls stump to stump. He deceives the batsmen with bounce and flight making it difficult for the batsmen to read. His bowling economy is 5.45. His best figures in T20 format are picking up 3 wickets giving away 14 runs. His bowling gives any captain the confidence that he will deliver at crucial juncture. He was suspended by the ICC for suspected illegal action. He is number third in the rankings.
4. Ravichandran Ashwin (India)
Ravichandran Ashwin has been the main bowler for India in T20 matches. Mainly an offie, he can also bowl with the new ball and pick up crucial wickets. Because of his height he extracts bounce and deceives the batsmen with his flight and pace. MS Dhoni the Indian Captain uses him in the first six over’s for India as well as for Chennai Super Kings. He is number 4 in the rankings at the moment. His best figures in T20 are 4 wickets for 11 runs against Australia in the 2014 ICC World Cup in Bangladesh. His economy is 7. 32 runs per over.
5. Saeed Ajmal (Pakistan)
Saeed Ajmal is an excellent off spinner for Pakistan. He has played for 10 different franchises in the world so far. He has played 63 T20 matches and picked up 85 wickets at an economy of 6.34. Presently he is suspended and has withdrawn his name from the Pakistan’s World Cup squad. He is working on his action. His best figures in T20 are picking 4wickets for 19 runs.