5 Highest Wicket-takers in history of IPL

When the T20 format was first introduced, it was heavily tilted in the favour of the batting team. More often than not, the bowlers had to bear the brunt of the onslaught inflicted by the batters, making it tough going for them in the game’s shortest format. But as they say, ‘Time is the medicine for the biggest of problems’, likewise the bowlers too devised different plans and strategies to counteract the belligerent approach from the batsmen and procured some wicket for themselves.

A similar trend too followed at the IPL, where bowlers with different skills, actions and speeds worked their magic, shifting the momentum another way round. Among them as well, there were some bowlers who managed to maintain the consistency come every season and made their way into the list of highest wicket-takers. In the below piece, we look at 5 highest wicket-takers in the history of IPL:

1. Lasith Malinga

The yorker sensation from Sri Lanka, who recently bid adieu to the league which bestowed him so much, Malinga is the highest wicket-taker in the league’s 13-years history. The pacer has scalped 170 wickets from 122 IPL games at an average of 19.80 and an economy rate of 7.14.

His best spell came against DC during the 4th match at Delhi in 2011. Owing to Malinga’s breathtaking spell of 5-13, the Delhi side could post just 95 on the board and then went onto lose the encounter by 8 wickets and 19 balls to spare. For MI, it was Master Blaster, Sachin Tendulkar, who led the batting charge with 46(50), helping them secure an easy win in the end.

2. Amit Mishra

The veteran Indian leg-spinner, popularly known as ‘Mishraji’, is the second-highest wicket-taker in the history of the league. The wrist-spinner has dismissed 160 batsmen from 150 IPL games at an average of 24.16 and an economy rate of 7.34.

His best wicket-taking spell came against the Deccan Chargers at Delhi in 2008. Put into bat first, the Delhi side posted a massive total of 194-4 on the board, owing to wonderful innings of 79(48) by Gambhir

and 68(52) by Dhawan.

The Chargers too displayed their batting prowess, managing 182-9 and losing the contest by just 12 runs. It was Mishra’s leg-spin that spun a web around the batsmen, helping him picked a fifer and end the game with figures of 5-17.

3. Piyush Chawla

Another impressive leg-spinner, who has dominated IPL cricket like no-one else, Chawla is the third-highest wicket-taker in the history of the league. The spinner has snapped up 156 wickets from 164 IPL games at an average of 27.32 and an economy rate of 7.87.

His best spell came against RCB during the 63rd game at Dharamsala in 2011. The Punjab Kings, who batted first, posted a gargantuan total of 232-2 in their 20 overs, courtesy six-hitting masterclass by Gilchrist and Marsh, who smashed 106(55) and 79(49) respectively.

RCB, unfortunately, couldn’t get any closer as they were bundled out for a mere score of 121 in 17 overs, losing the contest by an enormous margin of 111 runs. Chawla and Harris were the pick of the bowlers for the Kings, scalping 4-17 and 3-28 respectively to leave an impact.

4. Dwayne Bravo

The bowler who popularized slower ones and all the other variations used to fox a batsman, Bravo is the fourth-highest wicket-taker in the league. The medium-pacer has picked 153 wickets from 140 IPL games at an average of 24.82 and an economy rate of 8.40.

His most memorable spell came against the Punjab Kings during the 3rd game at Mohali in 2016. Batting first, the Kings were halted at 161-6 courtesy excellent piece of bowling by Bravo, who picked up 4-22.

In reply, the Gujarat Lions chased it down with ease on the back of impressive knocks of 74(47) by Finch and 41(26) by Karthik. The Lions won the contest by 5 wickets and 14 balls to spare, justifying a wonderful spell of bowling by Bravo at the start.

5. Harbhajan Singh

A legend of the game, one who validated finger-spin bowling as another way to success in the game’s shortest format, Harbhajan is the fifth-highest wicket-taker in the league’s long history. The ‘Turbanator’ has dismissed 150 batsmen from 160 IPL games at an average of 26.44 and an economy rate of 7.05.

His best spell was conjured against CSK during the 25th game at Mumbai in 2011. MI while batting first, posted a tricky total of 164-4 in their 20 overs, owing to beautiful innings of 87(48) by Rohit. Bollinger snared 2-30 for the Chennai-based outfit.

Given the batting might for CSK, many expected them to chase it down with consummate ease. But, in an unanticipated turn of events, the visiting side was stalled at 156-9, where Badrinath was the top-scorer with 71(48). MI deservedly won the contest by 8 runs and the credit for the same has to go to the two stalwarts of the game, Harbhajan and Malinga, who scalped 5-18 and 2-20 respectively to deal a final blow.

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