The bowlers have dominated in what has been the
lowest-scoring edition of the T20 World Cup, with the likes of Shaheen Afridi,
Wanindu Hasaranga and Adam Zampa putting in some stunning performances with the
ball in hand.
Here are our top five spells of the 2021 T20 World Cup.
5. Shadab Khan – 4-26 vs Australia
Shadab Khan registered the second-best figures in T20 World
Cup knockouts against Australia, picking up four wickets for just 26 runs in
the all-important semi-final. Spinners haven’t had much joy in the second
innings in Dubai with the dew, but Shadab bowled a perfect length and used his
variations to great effect to run through the Australian middle-order –
dismissing David Warner, Mitchell Marsh, Steve Smith and Glenn Maxwell.
4. Josh Hazlewood – 3-16 vs New Zealand
In a crunch final where the average scoring rate for both
sides was 8.9 runs an over, Josh Hazlewood bowled one of the spells of the
tournament, conceding just 16 runs from four overs and picking up three
wickets. Hazlewood removed the semi-final hero Daryl Mitchell with his
trademark leg-cutter in the powerplay, before returning in the 18th over to
dismiss Kane Williamson on 85, which helped keep the Kiwis total in the final
3. Adil Rashid – 4-2 vs West Indies
Adil Rashid ran through the West Indies lower-order in
England’s World Cup opener in Dubai as Eoin Morgan’s side bowled out the Men in
Maroon for just 55. Rashid removed the dangerous pairing of Andre Russell and
Kieron Pollard and finished with extraordinary figures off four wickets for just
two runs conceded from his 2.2 overs as West Indies were restricted to their
second-lowest score in T20Is.
2. Shaheen Afridi – 3-31 vs India
Shaheen Shah Afridi has been the most dangerous bowler in
the competition with the new ball, and the left-armer bowled with searing pace
and swing to give Pakistan the perfect start to their World Cup campaign. The
pacer ran through the Indian top order, dismissing openers Rohit Sharma and KL
Rahul with two unstoppable inswingers in the powerplay before returning at the
death to remove Virat Kohli on 57.
1. Adam Zampa – 5-19 vs Bangladesh
Adam Zampa was the unsung hero for Australia throughout the
World Cup campaign and ended the tournament as the second-highest wicket-taker
with 13 scalps. Zampa starred for the Aussies in their Super 12 win over
Bangladesh, picking up career-best figures of 5 for 19 as he spun a web around
the lower order. Zampa dismissed Afif Hossain with the first ball of his spell,
and the Bangladeshi batters had no answers to his top-spinners and googlies as
they were bowled out for 73.