Cricket, as we all know, is a batsman’s game, and rightly so, scoring runs makes the game a beautiful spectacle, and that is what makes people come in huge numbers to watch the game. This is especially true in Indian cricket, which historically has seen many legendary batters, and the craze for them among the public is pretty huge.
But at the same time, we have to admit that it is the bowlers who make the game even more interesting than it already is. There are moments when the bowlers take centre stage, weaving their magic and leaving an indelible mark on the game.
In this article, we will take a closer look at some of the most exciting and memorable ODI bowling performances for India, where bowlers showed their skills and bamboozled the opposition.
Best Bowling Figures for India in ODIs
|15 Nov 2023
|17 Jun 2014
|27 Nov 1993
|12 Jul 2022
|17 Sep 2023
|26 Feb 2003
|12 Jul 2018
|17 Oct 2007
|09 Jan 2004
|18 Jan 2019
Key insights from the above stats
10: More than 10 times, an Indian bowler has taken a six-wicket haul in ODI cricket. There are 11 different players who have achieved the feat, and the player missing from this list is Sreesanth, who picked 6/55 against England at Indore in 2006.
50: There are close to 50 instances where an Indian bowler has taken a five-wicket haul in ODI cricket, and this includes the above list.
1: The only player who has taken a six-wicket haul twice for India in ODI cricket is the left-arm seamer Ashish Nehra, who in a 2005 ODI game against Sri Lanka picked 6/59 at Colombo.
7/57: Mohammed Shami registered the best bowling figure for India in ODIs as he picked up 7 wickets for 57 runs against New Zealand in the 2023 World Cup. This is also the best bowling performance by an Indian bowler in the ODI World Cup.
6/23: Speaking of Ashish Nehra, the left-arm seamer has the second-best ODI figures for an Indian bowler in ODI World Cups and the 5th best overall for India. In a crucial fixture, India could manage only 250 while batting first, and it needed something special from Indian bowlers to defend a mediocre total. And it was Nehra who rose to the occasion, picking up 4 of the top 6 English batters’ wickets and eventually ending with splendid figures of 6/23. India won the contest by 82 runs in the end.
6/4: It is the second-best bowling figure registered by an Indian bowler in ODIs, and the holder of this record is rather surprising. It is medium pacer Stuart Binny who took it in a bilateral game against Bangladesh in Mirpur back in 2014. India had only 105 runs on the board on a tricky surface, and the unlikely defence of the target was largely possible due to a memorable once-in-a-lifetime spell by Binny, as he picked up 6 wickets in just 5 overs.
6/12: Before Binny registered this magical spell, Anil Kumble held the record for the best ODI figure for India (6/12) that he took in the Hero Cup final against the West Indies in 1992. Batting first, India could muster only 225 on the big evening, and the leggie blew away the West Indies with accurate leg spin and single-handedly dismantled their batting lineup.
6/19: The next best bowling figure by an Indian belongs to the current pace spearhead, Jasprit Bumrah, who bowled like a dream on that eventful day at the Oval. The previous 3 instances all came when India was defending a target, and this was the occasion where Bumrah literally dismantled the strong batting line-up of England with his spell of 6/19 and helped India bowl out the hosts for 110.
6/21: Mohammad Siraj was a sensation during this spell of bowling in the recently concluded Asia Cup final, where he single-handedly packed the top order of Sri Lanka in a jiffy. At one stage, he threatened to take even more wickets but eventually finished with an unforgettable spell of 6/21 on a huge occasion for Indian cricket. This helped India bowl out the hapless Sri Lankan team for a mere 50 runs — their second-lowest total in ODIs — and win the Asia Cup for the record 8th time.
6/25: The chinaman spinner, Kuldeep Yadav, spun a web around the English batting line-up during his spell of 6/25 at Nottingham in 2018. His wrist-spin magic was on full display as he snapped 5 wickets of the top 6 England batters in the game. His ability to turn the ball both ways and deceive the batsmen made him unplayable, as he helped India bundle the hosts for 268 runs.
6/27: The best spell by an Indian left-arm spinner and it came from the bowling of Murli Kartik, who sporadically featured in the playing XI. But in this inconsequential match at Wankhede, he made it count by picking up his only five-wicket haul in international cricket against Australia and helping India gain a consolation win in the series.