Test bowling strike rates in India: There has been a lot of chatter around spin-friendly wickets in India in recent years. It is argued that Indian spinners thrive in such conditions. Indian spinners don’t necessarily require the assistance of turning tracks. But it is the pacers too who have hunted in unison. Indian pacers outbowl the overseas ones eventually proving to be a differentiating factor. On pitches where every ball is an event, it is imperative for bowlers to strike consistently. Hence the bowlers with the best strike rates are gold dust in India.
We look at the top 5 Test bowling strike rates in India:
[Qualification – 100 wickets]
#5 Javagal Srinath Test Bowling Strike Rate – 55.8
He was India’s fastest bowler for the longest time. Javagal Srinath was India’s main weapon alongside Anil Kumble in Tests during the 90s. His ability to strike with the new ball was unparalleled. Srinath played 32 Tests in India picking 108 wickets. He bagged 5 five-wicket hauls and 1 ten-wicket haul in India. Srinath picked a wicket every 55.8 deliveries in Tests. His best figure in an inning was 8-86 while his best match figure was 13-132.
#4 Kapil Dev Test Bowling Strike Rate – 55.7
He was arguably the longest-serving Indian pace bowler in Tests. Kapil Dev’s Tests spanned 16 years from 1978-94. He was a terrific exponent of swing with both the new and old ball. Dev bagged 219 wickets in 65 Tests at a strike rate of 55.7. He was close to grabbing a perfect ten when he finished with a figure of 9-83. Dev’s best match haul was 11-146. He single-handedly carried the burden of Indian bowling on his shoulders for 3 decades!
#3 Ravindra Jadeja Test Bowling Strike Rate – 52.4
He has wreaked havoc on Indian wickets ever since he made his Test debut in 2012. Ravindra Jadeja is the leading wicket-taker in the ongoing Border-Gavaskar trophy. The left-arm spinner has already picked up 193 wickets in just 39 Tests. Jadeja is a nightmare for right-handers who are always caught up in two minds while facing him.
His straighter one has picked as many wickets as his stock delivery. He strikes at every 52.4 balls while conceding just 2.28 runs per over. Jadeja’s best performance in an innings came against the Aussies in Delhi when he grabbed 7-42 in the second innings.
#2 Ravichandran Ashwin Test Bowling Strike Rate – 46.3
He has been India’s biggest match-winner in Test cricket, especially in Indian conditions. Ravichandran Ashwin’s numbers in Tests at home are pretty insane. He has picked 330 wickets in just 54 Tests. Ashwin has picked a record number of player of the series award in Tests in India. He has bucketed 25 five-wicket and 6 ten-wicket hauls in India. Ashwin’s best figures in an inning read 7-59 while his best figures in a Test at home read 13-140. Ashwin’s strike rate of 46.3 for 330 wickets is outstanding.
#1 Umesh Yadav Test Bowling Strike Rate – 46.2
He joined the elite list of fast bowlers to pick up 100 wickets in India. Umesh Yadav has been one of India’s finest bowlers in the last 7-8 years. His ability to extract reverse swing early makes him unique. Yadav’s slinging action helps him to move the ball at pace. His outburst in the first innings against Australia in Indore kept India in the game. Yadav has 101 Test wickets in India at a strike rate of 46.2. He also has a ten-wicket haul to his name in India.