Cricket has changed a lot over time. The matches and overall game are getting more challenging with every passing day. Still, there is no comparison with the greats that played cricket before introducing the T20 or ODI format. Batters can score as many runs as possible, but a team needs to take ten wickets from the opponent to win a cricket match. Pakistani bowlers have ruled world cricket for many years. Even now, there are bowlers like Shaheen Afridi and Naseem Shah. Their deadly bowling can prove to be a nightmare for any batter.
Over the years, Pakistan has launched some great bowlers. Pakistan is famous for making pacers like Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis, and others. Besides, some quality spinners have also bewildered the cricketing world with their skills while representing Pakistan in International cricket, like Saqlain Mushtaq and Abdul Qadir. Statistics show that Pakistan has won more matches with the help of its bowlers compared to the contribution of its batters. Pakistani bowlers have shown dominance over the years in every single game format.
Here we will list the top greatest Pakistan bowlers in terms of the wickets taken. We will make separate lists for every format that exists today, which means three different lists for tests, ODIs, and T20s.
Best 5 Bowlers to Take Most ODI Wickets for Pakistan
1. Wasim Akram
Probably the best left-arm seamer the game has ever seen, Wasim Akram was a legend in his own right. No Pakistani bowler has taken more wickets in ODIs than Wasim Akram. In his 336 appearances in ODIs for Pakistan, Wasim had bagged 502 scalps.
With these many wickets, he comes only behind Muttiah Muralitharan in the list of highest-ever wicket-takers in ODIs. The left-arm seamer of Pakistan has taken a 5-wicket haul 6 times in his 19 years long career.
2. Waqar Younis
From one legend to another, Waqar Younis was the ideal bowling partner of Wasim Akram. He comes right after Wasim Akram in the third position in the list of highest-ever wicket-takers in ODIs.
Waqar has taken wickets of 416 batters in the 262 matches played for Pakistan in ODIs. He also has the record of handling the most 5 wicket haul for Pakistan in ODIs (13).
3. Shahid Afridi
Most cricketing fans remember Shahid Afridi for his explosive batting style. Still, he was equally effective as a bowler during his playing days. He has taken 393 wickets in the same number of matches while scoring more than 8000 runs. In 2013, he recorded the second-ever best bowling figure in the history of ODI cricket, 7 for 12, against West Indies.
4. Saqlain Mushtaq
Saqlain Mushtaq grabs the 4th position in the list with 288 scalps in the 169 matches he has played for Pakistan in ODIs.
5. Abdul Razzaq
Abdul Razzaq was a former all-rounder who played for Pakistan between 1999 and 2013. He won the 2009 T20 world cup with Pakistan. He has taken 268 wickets in his career, placing him in the 5th position on our list.
Top 4 Bowlers to Take Most Test Wickets for Pakistan
1. Wasim Akram
Wasim Akram also tops the list of most successful test bowlers for Pakistan. This wicket-taking machine has made 414 batsmen his prey in 104 test matches he has played in his career.
2. Waqar Younis
The trend continues, and Waqar Younis also follows Wasim Akram in this list. He holds the 2nd position with 373 wickets which he has taken in 87 test matches.
3. Imran Khan
Former PM of Pakistan Imran Khan has represented Pakistan in 88 test matches. In those appearances, he has successfully scalped an astonishing 362 wickets.
4. Danish Kaneria
Danish Kaneria, a right-arm leg spinner, was one of the few Hindu players representing Pakistan in International cricket. Between 2000 and 2010, he played 61 test matches, and in those matches, the spinner managed to grab 261 wickets.
In his 13 years long career spanned from 1977 to 1990, Abdul Qadir played 67 international test matches. He comes in the 5th position of this list with 236 wickets in this format.
Top 5 Bowlers to Take Most T20 Wickets for Pakistan
1. Shahid Afridi
In his 10 years long career Shahid Afridi has taken 97 wickets while also scoring 2362 runs.
2. Shadab Khan
Shadab Khan is the first active Pakistani cricketer to make our list. This pacer has taken 87 wickets so far in his career.
3. Umar Gul
The former right-arm pacer of Pakistan had been the backbone of the Pakistan bowling line-up during his playing days (2007-2016). In that period, he has gotten 85 wickets. Gul has also taken 32 five-wicket hauls in his T20I career. He is the only Pakistani bowler to do so.
4. Saeed Ajmal
In his 6 years long career in T20Is, Ajmal has taken the same number of wickets as Umar Gul (85), but he played more matches (64) than Umar Gul (60), which puts him in 4th position in our list.
5. Haris Rauf
The second active cricketer on the list, Haris Rauf, has excellent potential to be on top of this list at the end of his career. In his 2 years old cricketing T20I career, he has taken 64 wickets.
We hope that the current bowlers break the records of the legend we have mentioned in our lists, as records are meant to be broken. The T20 world cup 2022 is about to begin, and we can expect fantastic performances from the Pakistani bowlers in the tournament.