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Glenn Mcgrath – Highest Wicket Taker in ICC Cricket World Cups

by Tom on Friday, September 6th, 2013
Australia fast bowler Glenn McGrath

Australia fast bowler Glenn McGrath

Given the batsmen oriented game that cricket has become, bowlers have found themselves cornered. However, there have always been the likes of bowlers who via sheer innovation have tried to counter the marauding batsmen. But among these bowlers was a statesman who relied solely upon disciplined bowling, pitching the bowl in the corridor of doubt (outside off stump). Yes we are talking about the Australian pigeon, Glenn Mcgrath. With 381 ODI wickets and 563 Test scalps, this legend needs no introduction. However, we would be locking grid upon his World Cup performances which were pivotal in making Australia world champions thrice on trot.

His forte is that nagging accuracy, which coupled with steep height from which he delivered those bowls led to many an epic dismissals. With 71 world cup wickets, he leads the pack of leading wicket takers. Though the current Australian pace battery oozes with pace and swing, they can really take a leaf of discipline from Mcgrath. With a paltry average of 18.19, he wrecked havoc upon the best of the best proving his worth as a vital cog in the Australian set-up. We would focus upon some of his best performances which came during these very world-cups.

5 for 14 vs West Indies, Group B match, 1999

With Aussies facing elimination post the defeats to Pakistan and New Zealand, pigeon launched a verbal salvo in the newspapers suggesting that he had take a fiver in the following match. It proved to be true as he rose to the occasion dismissing the backbone of West Indian line-up in the form of Sherwin Campbell, Jimmy Adams and Brian Lara. To Lara he fired a delivery angling at the middle stump which clipped the top of off. Eventually West Indies got dismissed for a mere 110 and Australia went on to win the world-cup.

Glenn Mcgrath

Glenn Mcgrath

3 for 18 vs South Africa, Semi-final, 2007

Heralded as the clash of titans, it turned out to be a stroll in the garden for Australia. The tag of ‘chokers’ made South Africa commit suicidal mistakes. Their thought-line was to attack the Aussies from the onset. However, it backfired spectacularly. It reached its epitome when Jacques Kallis walked down to Mcgrath only to see his stumps disturbed courtesy the Yorker delivered.  Although Ashwell Prince got dismissed from a delivery which would have been a wide, Mark Boucher was caught at slips via the customary delivery outside the off-stump. Mcgrath ended up as the leading wicket-taker of the tournament with 26 scalps.

7 for 15 vs Namibia, group stage, 2003

Though Namibia are minnows when it comes to cricket. Yet the sheer discipline with which Mcgrath went about destroying their line-up makes it an effort worth mentioning. Though he conceded 12 runs in his first over, he engulfed their batting line up as only one player reached double digit figures.

Bowlers are fast becoming an endangered species as the rules of cricket are deviously trying to break all hell loose. And yet the likes of Glenn Mcgrath though not active any more should inspire the current crop and the future ones to embark on the path of discipline.

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