There was a time when cricket teams brag about their strength based on the number of fast bowlers in their bedecked echelons. The raw and brutal pace wasn’t just a technique like it is now, but it used to be a fear-mongering aspect of each team, especially with players of such colossal stature as the Whispering Death, Big Bird, Barney, Paddles, and countless others who have romanticised the art of fast bowling to the point where a team without such big brutal names was considered effeminate.
However, cricket’s entire worldview has shifted, and things are no longer what they were. As the game has progressed over time, so have the athletes who participate in it. From being a sport of all-around ability, it has evolved into a stoush of willow and leather, with a strong preference for those flailing the blade frantically.
Despite the passing of such cruel and minatory fast bowlers, a new generation of styles has emerged that has not only developed themselves according to fast bowling’s requirements but are also capable of continuously hitting the deck at 145+ ticks.
In the past, the Indian cricket team was blessed with a plethora of very excellent batsmen, but just a few bowlers have thrived in the modern-day Indian cricket team. Since the start of the Indian Premier League in India, there has been an influx of highly talented bowlers. A handful of them went on to lead the Indian team’s bowling attack.
- Harshal Patel
Harshal Patel had only played five games for Delhi Capitals last season and had only three wickets before being moved to Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), where he made a spectacular turnaround. Harshal went on to become an important man in the RCB line-up, surprising everyone with his bowling prowess.
He finished IPL 2021 as the leading wicket-taker with 32 wickets in 15 matches, including a hat-trick against Mumbai Indians. He also matched Dwayne Bravo’s IPL record for the most wickets in a single season.
- Jasprit Bumrah
Jasprit Bumrah, the premier bowling option for the Mumbai Indians and India, will be one of the year’s most exciting pacers. If he gets going, he can upset any well-rested batting order and bring the opposition to the edge of extinction.
Bumrah, one of the best bowlers in the IPL in recent years, wasn’t at his lethal best this season, but he was still among the wickets. He was the most productive bowler for the Mumbai Indians, taking 21 wickets in 14 games for a 7.45 economy rate. In the IPL 2021, he finished third in terms of most wickets taken.
- Ravichandran Ashwin
In the recently finished New Zealand Test series, spinner Ravichandran Ashwin set a number of records, including becoming the first bowler to take 50 or more wickets in a Test match in 2021. He also passed Harbhajan Singh to become India’s third-highest Test wicket-taker.
He has 52 wickets to his name. He didn’t play in the Gabba Test, and he didn’t play in any of England’s matches. That means he hasn’t played in a single Test match in five tests. He has also scored runs, but this isn’t about his batting ability. If he had played every match, he would have taken 70 wickets.