Test cricket can test one’s ability. There are only very few who come out as successful Test cricketers.
Picking five wickets in a Test innings or ten wickets in a Test match comes in the same category of a challenging task.
Anil Kumble came out with 10 in a Test innings! That’s rare! Three times in 140 years rare!
I really enjoy bringing stats together in Cricket. And that of Test cricket brings more fun.
And here is the one which a Sri Lankan bowler tops with a mighty lead from the players in the list.
Muttiah Muralitharan has added 800 Test wickets to his name and tops the lists of both the most 5-wicket hauls & most 10-wicket hauls in Test cricket.
You can find the Indian list of bowlers with the same milestones here.
Most 5-Wicket Hauls in Test
|M Muralitharan (SL)||1992-2010||133||230||67||800|
|S Warne (AUS)||1992-2007||145||273||37||708|
|R Hadlee (NZ)||1973-1990||86||150||36||431|
|A Kumble (IND)||1990-2008||132||236||35||619|
|R Herath (SL)||1999-2018||93||170||34||433|
|J Anderson (ENG)||2003-2019||179||333||32||685|
|R Ashwin (IND)||2011-2021||92||173||32||473|
|G McGrath (AUS)||1993-2007||124||243||29||563|
|I Botham (AUS)||1977-1992||102||168||27||383|
|D Steyn (SA)||2004-2019||93||171||26||439|
Muttiah Muralitharan holds the record for the most five-wicket hauls in Test cricket – 67.
One can see the complete sway of spinners in the list. Four of the top-5 places go to the spinners.
The 3rd ranked player, Richard Hadlee, a New Zealand All-rounder, is the leading fast bowler to pick most 5-fers in a Test innings – 36. And he was the 1st player to pick 400 Test wickets in International cricket.
Ravichandran Ashwin is the one bowler marching steadily to the top. But with him closing 37 years of age, I doubt he can reach the mighty 67 5-wicket hauls of Muralitharan. Murali’s record looks unbreakable. I couldn’t find any current players close to the radar to reach his mark.
As of 2018, 150 players have taken 5-wicket hauls in an innings in their debut Test match, the latest being Akila Dananjaya of Sri Lanka against Bangladesh.
Nine players have taken 5-wickets in both innings of a Test match. Fred Martin of England was the 1st, and India’s Narendra Hirwani was the latest to do so.
Most 10-Wicket Hauls in Test
|PLAYERS||SPAN||MATCHES||INNINGS||10 WICKETS||BEST BOWLING (MATCH)|
|M Muralitharan (SL)||1992 - 2010||133||230||22||220/16|
|S Warne (AUS)||1992 2007||145||273||10||128/12|
|R Hadlee (NZ)||1973 - 1990||86||150||9||123/15|
|R Herath (SL)||1999 - 2018||93||170||9||184/14|
|A Kumble (IND)||1990 - 2008||132||236||8||149/14|
|S Barnes (ENG)||1901 - 1914||27||50||7||159/17|
|C Grimmett (AUS)||1925 - 1936||37||67||7||199/14|
|D Lillee (AUS)||1971 - 1984||70||132||7||123/11|
|R Ashwin (IND)||2011 - 2023||89||168||7||140/13|
|Imran Khan (PAK)||1971 - 1992||88||142||6||116/14|
Once again, Muttiah Muralitharan leads the chart of the 10-wicket hauls in Test cricket with 22 10-wicket hauls, which is 12 higher than the 2nd-placed Shane Warne.
The top 5 looks almost the same as the previous list, only with Rangana Herath moving up.
And nine players have picked a 10-fer in their debut Test match.
Most Consecutive 5 & 10-Wicket hauls in Test Cricket
Charlie Turner, the Australian fast bowler, picked six consecutive 5-wicket Hauls in 6 straight innings against England in 1888. The record still stands for the most consecutive 5-wicket hauls in Test cricket.
Fun note: Charlie Turner was the first player whose bowling speed was measured in Cricket.
Muttiah Muralitharan tops the list for the most consecutive 10-wicket hauls in Test cricket. He has picked four consecutive 10-wicket hauls twice in his career (once in 2001 & once in 2006).
Bonus Stat: Sydney Barnes of England tops the list for the most 5-wicket hauls in a Test series. He picked seven 5-wicket hauls against South Africa in 1914.
Read: Youngest and Oldest to pick 5-Wicket & 10-Wicket Hauls in Test
I have seen people proposing Kagiso Rabada’s name on social media to get past Muthiah Muralitharan’s mark.
But still, I believe it’s a long way to go for the youngsters, and nothing remains the same in Test cricket unless they stay super fit and consistently in form.
Let us know whom you think can get past Muralitharan’s mark! And keep the argument growing!
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