When it comes to Test cricket, Bowlers need to have special preparation because their quality of bowling decides the result of an inning. They need to be patient, skillful, and adaptable, as Test matches are longer and more demanding compared to limited-overs formats.
Bowlers should observe the pitch before and during the match to understand its behaviour and how it might change over the course of the match. Adjusting their bowling plans according to pitch characteristics is essential.
Test matches are physically demanding, and bowlers must maintain their fitness and endurance throughout the game. They should be able to bowl long spells without losing pace or accuracy.
In this article, we have compiled a list of 5 bowlers with the most 10-wicket match hauls in Test cricket.
1) Muthiah Muralitharan – 22
Muthiah Muralitharan is widely regarded as one of the greatest bowlers in the history of cricket. His bowling style and unique wrist action made him a formidable force in all formats of the game, particularly in Test cricket. The doosra was Muralitharan’s most famous delivery.
He was able to bowl it with such precision that it often bamboozled even the best batsmen. Murli has a total of 22 10-Wicket hauls in his entire career in Test cricket and that is why tops the list. His record of 10-wicket haul looks unbreakable and no other bowler has come closer to his achievement.
2) Shane Warne – 10
Shane Warne had an extensive repertoire of spin deliveries, including leg-breaks, googlies, flippers, and top spinners. His ability to bowl these variations with precise control made him exceptionally difficult to read for batsmen. Warne had a remarkable ability to perform at his best in high-pressure situations and big matches.
3) Richard Hadlee – 9
Richard Hadlee was the first cricketer to reach the milestone of 400 Test wickets, and he did so in an era when there were fewer Test matches played compared to today. Hadlee was exceptionally accurate in his bowling, hitting the right areas consistently.
He rarely bowled loose deliveries, which put constant pressure on the batsmen. It is because of his quality of bowling, Hadlee achieved the 10-wicket haul 9 times in Test cricket.
4) Rangana Herath – 9
Herath was a highly skilled left-arm orthodox spin bowler. He had excellent control over his flight and variations, and his ability to extract turns from various surfaces made him a potent threat to batsmen. Herath’s prowess was particularly evident in subcontinent conditions, where he enjoyed significant success.
He was a master of exploiting spinning tracks, using his guile and control to trouble batsmen on turning pitches. Herath achieved the 10-wicket haul for 9 times equalling the record of Richard Hadlee.
5) Anil Kumble & R Ashwin – 8
Kumble was renowned for his accuracy. He had the ability to consistently hit the same spot on the pitch, which allowed him to build pressure on the batsmen and create scoring opportunities. Besides his leg spin, Kumble had a well-disguised googly and a potent flipper, which were his variations.
The flipper was particularly effective, as it skidded onto the batsmen, often surprising them. In his entire Test career, Kumble reached the 10-wicket haul 8 times.
Another Indian spin maestro, R Ashwin, recently reached the same number during the first Test against West Indies. He picked up 5 wickets in the first inning and 7 wickets in the second innings of the match.