Cricket is a sport that celebrates individual brilliance and team success. Bowlers, in particular, have the ability to change the course of a game with a single spell of exceptional bowling. A “five-wicket haul” is a term used to describe a bowler taking five or more wickets in a single inning. In this blog, we take a look at the list of the bowlers who have achieved the most number of five-wicket hauls in their Test cricket careers. These bowlers have left a lasting impression on the sport and will forever be remembered as some of the greatest bowlers to have ever played the game.
10 Most Five-wicket hauls in Test Cricket
1. Muttiah Muralitharan (Sri Lanka) – 67 five-wicket hauls
Muttiah Muralitharan is a former Sri Lankan cricketer and is widely regarded as one of the greatest bowlers of all time. Over the course of his international career, which spanned from 1992 to 2010, Muralitharan took an astonishing 800 wickets in 133 Test matches and 534 wickets in 350 Day Internationals (ODIs). One of his most impressive records is his 67 five-wicket hauls in Test cricket, which he achieved in just 230 innings. This means that on average, he took at least five wickets in an inning once every 3.4 innings, a testament to his skill and consistency as a bowler.
2. Shane Warne (Australia) – 37 five-wicket hauls
Shane Warne is another greatest bowler to have ever played the game of cricket. Warne took a remarkable 708 wickets, including 37 five-wicket hauls in 145 test matches. Warne was able to consistently deliver match-winning performances with his leg-spin bowling. His accuracy, turn, and variations made him a difficult bowler to face, and he was feared by batsmen around the world. Warne’s 37 five-wicket hauls came from 273 innings, an impressive feat that highlights his exceptional skill as a bowler.
3. Richard John Hadlee (New Zeland) – 36 five-wicket hauls
Richard John Hadlee is a former New Zealand cricketer who was known for his exceptional fast bowling skills. He played 86 test matches and took part in 150 innings in international cricket, during which he claimed an impressive 36 five-wicket hauls. Hadlee’s ability to swing the ball both ways, along with his accuracy and variations, made him one of the most difficult bowlers to face for batsmen. He was also known for his athleticism on the field and his ability to bowl long spells without losing his pace or control.
4. Anil Kumble (India) – 35 five-wicket hauls
Anil Kumble is a former Indian cricketer who played international cricket from 1990 to 2008. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest spin bowlers of all time and is one of only three bowlers in the history of cricket to have taken more than 600 wickets in international cricket. In his 132 test matches, Kumble took 35 five-wicket hauls, demonstrating his ability to consistently take multiple wickets in a single inning. This impressive feat was achieved across 236 innings, showing his consistency and longevity in the game.
5. Rangana Herath (Sri Lanka) – 34 five-wicket hauls
Rangana Herath is a former Sri Lankan cricketer who was one of the most successful spin bowlers in the world of his generation. He played 93 Test matches and took 433 wickets, making him one of the highest wicket-takers for Sri Lanka in the longest format of the game. He was particularly effective in Asian conditions, where spinners usually play a crucial role. In his career, Herath recorded an impressive 34 five-wicket hauls, an achievement that showcases his ability to take wickets in clusters and put pressure on the opposition.
6. James Anderson (England) – 32 five-wicket hauls
James Anderson is an English cricketer who was widely regarded as one of the greatest fast bowlers of all time. He played for England in 177 Test matches and took a total of 675 wickets, making him the leading wicket-taker among fast bowlers in Test cricket. He took 32 five-wicket hauls in Test cricket, which highlights his ability to take wickets in clusters and put pressure on the opposition.
7. Ravichandran Ashwin (India) – 31 five-wicket hauls
Ravichandran Ashwin is a talented off-spinner who has represented India in 89 Test matches, where he has taken a total of 457 wickets. Ashwin is known for his consistent performance and ability to take wickets in both helpful and unhelpful conditions. In his 168 innings, he has managed to take 31 five-wicket hauls, which is an impressive feat for a spinner in international cricket. His five-wicket hauls have come against some of the strongest batting lineups in the world, including Australia, South Africa, England, and the West Indies.
8. Glenn McGrath (Australia) – 29 five-wicket hauls
Glenn McGrath is a former Australian cricketer who is considered one of the greatest fast bowlers of all time. In his international career, which spanned from 1993 to 2007, McGrath took a total of 563 wickets in 124 Test matches. He was particularly effective in the longest format of the game, where he took 29 five-wicket hauls across 243 innings. His performance in Test matches was a key factor in Australia’s success during the late 1990s and early 2000s, and he remains one of the greatest fast bowlers to have ever played the game.
9. Ian Botham (England) – 27 five-wicket hauls
Ian Botham was a legendary all-rounder for England, playing 102 Test matches and taking 383 wickets over the course of his international cricket career. Despite being primarily known for his batting, Botham was also an effective bowler, with a total of 27 five-wicket hauls in 168 innings.
10. Dale Steyn (South Africa) – 26 five-wicket hauls
Dale Steyn is a former South African cricketer who is considered one of the greatest fast bowlers of all time. He played 93 Test matches and took 26 five-wicket hauls in 171 innings. Steyn was known for his raw pace, accuracy, and ability to swing the ball both ways, making him a constant threat to batsmen. Throughout his career, Steyn was a key figure in the South African attack, regularly leading the wicket-taking charts and playing a crucial role in many of their victories.
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