For as bleak and devoid of action 2020 turned out to be, the year did have its fair share of cricketing action. Particularly in the T20 arena: while international cricket still hasn’t quite returned to its affluent state, franchise cricket leagues seem to be thriving around all corners of the globe. Consequently, the year saw a number of bowlers rise up to the occasion and add to the stardom of the aforementioned leagues.
Besides the regular customers, like the Indian Premier League (IPL), Big Bash League (BBL) and Caribbean Premier League (CPL), some of the still-developing T20 mega-events, like the Pakistan Super League (PSL), Bangladesh Premier League (BPL), and even the newly formed Lanka Premier League (LPL) gained considerable traction. All thanks to a select few bowlers, and the spirited performances they were able to deliver all-round the year.
So, who are these bowlers? How well did they perform? What can fans expect from them in the future? Let’s try to mull over those questions; as we rank the top-10 bowlers from T20 franchise cricket in 2020- based on how many wickets they picked.
Here are Top 10 Franchise T20 League bowlers of 2020
10) Jason Holder
West Indies captain Jason Holder has often been regarded as a Test specialist, thanks to the consistent lines and lengths he’s able to maintain in his bowling. 2020, however, turned out to be a fresh break for the West Indies’ red-ball captain, as he showed a good run of form in several T20 leagues across the globe.
While it was his promoted batting in the middle-order that grabbed the most attention, his form with the ball was quite impressive as well. Holder played for the Barbados Tridents and Sunrisers Hyderabad and is also currently involved with the Sydney Sixers in the Big Bash League. His stats from last year read 26 wickets from 20 matches.
With the T20 World Cup coming up, it’s quite obvious that Holder is trying to establish his credentials in the shortest format by plying his trade in various foreign leagues. But in addition to his cricket prowess, Holder’s experience as a national captain is also a handy bonus, as it showed in SRH’s spirited turn-around in the IPL 2020.
9) Jasprit Bumrah
Wickets and Boom-Boom go hand-in-hand, so it’s hardly a surprise that Jasprit Bumrah’s name features on this list. Although it is kind of strange to see him transitioning from one flop-XI team to a best-players’ list in the same year.
What’s even bizarre is that the 27-year-old India quick featured in just one T20 tournament, and still manages to occupy a spot on this coveted inventory. Bumrah featured in all but one game of the Mumbai Indians’ title-winning IPL 2020 season. He finished with 27-wickets from 15-games; just behind the aforementioned Rabada on the Purple-cap chart.
It certainly hasn’t been Bumrah’s most rewarding year in international cricket this time around. But in all fairness, the games that he did play well in yielded some really iconic wins for his team(s).
8) Imran Tahir
Even at 41-years of age, Tahir- thanks to his good-natured charm and charisma- continues to be one of the most evergreen players of this era. But on-field, it’s his wily, wicket-taking abilities with leg-spin, that make him a potent threat in any T20 line-up.
2020 certainly reaffirmed Tahir’s stature as one of the white-ball GOATs, as he picked up 27-scalps from 23-outings. The tally includes seasons with the Multan Sultans and Guyana Amazon Warriors; both of whom made playoff appearances in their respective tournaments.
Most recently, Tahir was supposed to make his Big Bash debut for the Melbourne Renegades in the ongoing season. Unfortunately, though, an eleventh-hour obligation ruled him out from playing there.
7) Chris Morris
An infamous history of injuries has often kept Morris, the 33-year-old South African fast-bowling all-rounder out of the national reckoning. But as far as league cricket is concerned, Morris made quite a name for himself as one of the best death-bowlers out there.
Last year, Morris starred in his maiden Big Bash League stint for the Sydney Thunder. And it proved to be quite a memorable first-outing for him, as he ended the season with 22 wickets; the second-most in the tournament.
Later, he turned up for his new IPL franchise, the Royal Challengers Bangalore, and played a vital role in their third-place finish. His overall stats from 2020 read 27 wickets from 21 games.
While fitness remains a constant challenge Morris, lately, it seems like he is trying to reinvent himself as a T20 mercenary.
6) Daniel Sams
Rounding off the sixth spot on this roster is Daniel Sams, the upcoming Australian left-arm-quick. 2020 certainly turned out to be a promising season for Sams, considering all the different formats he was able to play in.
It all started in from the Big Bash 2019-20, where a stunning run with the Sydney Thunder saw him top the wicket-takers’ list with 30-scalps. Consequently, he soon got fast-tracked into the national team in the series against England.
But it didn’t just end with the Australia call-up. A last-moment injury to Jason Roy prompted the Delhi Capitals in the IPL to rope in Sams as a last-moment replacement. He also got to play a few games for DC.
Sams finished the year with 28-wickets from 20-matches. He’s one of the few people out there who had productive 2020 and will be eager to take his form into the future.
5) Kagiso Rabada
Rabada, the prodigious 25-year-old right-arm-quick, didn’t get to feature in a wide range of T20 events; unlike most bowlers, we’ve discussed so far. But his sheer domination in the 2020 IPL was more than enough to accord him a place on this coveted list.
Rabada featured in all 17-matches of the Delhi Capitals this season, where he accounted for 30-wickets. Unsurprisingly, the performance saw him finish with the purple-cap in DC’s second-place finish; the best they’ve managed in 13 years.
Commitments with the national team have often prevented KG from participating in other foreign leagues. And given the high value, he adds to the South Africa team, it doesn’t seem very likely that he will make more franchise appearances than he already does. Nevertheless, Rabada’s spicy-bowling earmarks him as one of the most exciting IPL performers.
4) Fawad Ahmed
The 38-year-old Pakistan-born Australian all-rounder has been one of the most underrated T20 performers in recent times. Fawad’s ability to provide key breakthroughs with his leg-break bowling- at miserly returns- makes him a valuable asset in the shortest format.
Fawad represented the Trinibago Knight Riders in their title-winning CPL campaign last year. He played a major role in their undefeated dominance, picking up 13-wickets (fourth-highest in the tourney) in 11-matches.
Overall, he finished with 31-scalps; spanning across 30 bowling-innings for the Quetta Gladiators and Perth Scorchers in the PSL and BBL respectively.
Pundits in Australia have long advocated for Fawad at least getting considered for selection in the national white-ball team. Should he be able to live up to his consistent reputation, there is an outside chance of him featuring in the 2021 World T20 in national colours.
3) Mujeeb ur Rahman
19-year-old Afghan prodigy Mujeeb ur Rahman ends up as the third-best bowler from 2020. Over the years, the talented wrist-spinner has plied his trade in a whole bunch of sporting events all across the globe; which has played a big role in maturing his bowling prowess.
The last year was no exception in that regard. Mujeeb played for the Cumilla Victorians, Brisbane Heat, Kings XI Punjab, and Jamaica Tallawahs. He played 27 T20 matches, where he claimed 32-wickets.
While none of the teams he played for did particularly well, his season with the Tallawahs yielded 16-wickets and placed him second on the CPL wicket-takers’ list.
It’s simply mind-boggling to think the multitude of skills and experience Mujeeb has already acquired at such a tender age. Surely, it will serve him well in his endeavours to serve as a travelling T20 mercenary.
2) Mohammad Amir
Former Pakistani international fast-bowler Mohammad Amir had a rather bittersweet stint with the national team last year. But on the franchise side of things, the 28-year-old left-arm-quick was at his fiery best across each of the leagues he played in.
2020 saw Amir feature in prominent T20 tournaments like the PSL, LPL, and BPL. Across all those 27-appearances, he accounted for a total of 36 wickets and managed to feature in the finals of each of those events. In fact, while he finished runner-up for the Jaffna Stallions and Khulna Tigers, Amir starred in a victorious 10-wicket campaign with the Karachi Kings.
The talented pacer’s recent decision to withdraw from the international format has upset some of his fans. On the other hand, it should allow him to debut in the tournaments that he’s yet to play, like the CPL, BBL- and maybe even the IPL- on the account of his British passport.
1) Rashid Khan
It’s hardly a surprise that Rashid Khan, the world’s top-ranked bowler in T20Is, makes his name onto this list- that too at the pinnacle spot. The 22-year-old right-arm-leggie has been bamboozling batters with his wrist-spin ever since he burst on to the international scene in 2015.
His exploits last year were, unsurprisingly, just as phenomenal. Across 42 franchise league games, Rashid claimed 51 wickets; the highest for any bowler in 2020. The list of teams he made appearances for this season include the Adelaide Strikers, Barbados Tridents, and the Sunrisers Hyderabad.
None of them had particularly impressive runs; barring SRH, who finished 3rd in the 2020 IPL. And with 20 wickets to his name, it’s fair to say that the young-Turk from Afghanistan had a major role in their success. Naturally, the recipient of the ICC Men’s T20I Player of the Decade award will have a high bar of expectations to meet in 2021 as well.
Source: The source of this content is our cricket news platform Crictracker.
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