Want to be a professional cricketer?
In 2007, International Cricket Council (ICC) inaugurated the first edition of the T20 World Cup, which was held in South Africa. India won the T20 World Cup 2007 after beating Pakistan in the finale. However, Pakistan made the strong comeback in the second edition, ICC T20 World Cup 2009, as they defeated Sri Lanka in the grand finale.
England hosted ICC T20 World Cup 2009 and 12 teams participated in the tournament. Team India, led by MS Dhoni, could not qualify for knock-out rounds as they failed to bring back the trophy to home.
During the tournament, several records were formed by batsmen and bowlers. In this article, we have mentioned the five bowlers who were the highest wicket-takers in the tournament.
1. Umar Gul:
Umar Gul didn’t get publicity like his counterparts but he had a significant influence in Pakistan’s team. He was a lethal bowler in shorter formats where he enjoyed immense success. His slower deliveries and crisp yorkers have destroyed any opposition.
Having made the debut in 2003, he cemented his place in the Pakistan team and played for them for over a decade. He was the prominent bowler for his side in the ICC T20 World Cup 2009 as he was the highest wicket-taker in the tournament.
The faster bowler notched up 13 wickets, including one five-wicket haul, in seven matches at the economy rate of 6.44 at an average of 12.15. Gul has represented Pakistan in 47 Tests, 130 ODIs and 60 T20Is and last played for them in 2016.
2. Ajantha Mendis:
Sri Lankan cricketer Ajantha Mendis, at peak of his career, would tear apart any opposition with his unorthodox spin bowling. His accuracy to pitch the ball on stump made was his strength. However, he had a dreadful end as gradually his technique got exposed to batsmen. He soon faded away from international cricket.
Nevertheless, he had given outstanding performances at the peak of his career. His masterpiece was also witnessed in the T20 World Cup 2009 where he topped the chart. He was the second-highest wicket-taker, picking 12 wickets in 7 matches at the economy rate of 5.50 and a startling average of 11.91 in the tournament. Although his efforts could not help Sri Lanka to grab their hand on the trophy, they faced defeat in the final against Pakistan.
3. Saeed Ajmal:
Pakistani spinner Saeed Ajmal, who made the debut in 2008, instantly attained success in shorter formats. For his commendable performance in the T20 format, he was given chance in the ICC T20 World Cup 2009. He showcased his brilliance with the bowl in that particular tournament, becoming the leading wicket-taker for his team.
Ajmal scalped 12 wickets, including one four-wicket haul, in seven matches at the economy rate of 5.82 and an average of 13.58. The third-highest wicket-taker helped Pakistan to bring the trophy home.
4. Lasith Malinga:
Having made the debut for Sri Lanka in 2004, Lasith Malinga became the indispensable part of his side in shorter formats. He has now become the best fast bowler of all time. Batsmen feared to face his pin-point yorkers during the peak of his career.
He was also the mainstay for the team in the ICC T20 World Cup 2009 where his team reached the final of the tournament. He was the leading wicket-taker, picking 12 wickets in seven matches at the economy rate of 7.14 and an average of 15.74.
5. Shahid Afridi:
Pakistan’s greatest allrounder Shahid Afridi has a big contribution to his country’s cricket history. He was attacking batsman and a prolific spinner. He could speed up the innings in the middle while also demolish the opposition batting line up with googlies and off-break. Nevertheless, he was always surrounded by controversies related to age fudging.
Afridi was also the match-winner for his team in the ICC T20 World Cup 2009. Besides his batting charisma in the tournament, he also hogged the limelight because of his bowling. He picked up 11 wickets, including one four-wicket haul, in seven matches at the economy rate of 5.32 and an average of 13.54.