The Leicestershire captain Colin Ackermann, well known for his exploits with the bat, ended up bagging a world record with the ball on Wednesday night. Leading his team against the Birmingham Bears in the T20 Blast game, the off-spinner ended up with a 7-wicket haul, the first-ever in the history of Twenty20 cricket. Coming into the game, Ackermann had 31 wickets to his name in 90 T20s with a best of 3/21.
Leicestershire posted 189/6 in their 20 overs after electing to bat first. The Leicester skipper bowled the 3rd over of the chase and took the first wicket of Michael Burgess. He returned for a final spell in the 15th over when the visitors were looking dangerous at 118/3. He got the wickets of the dangerous Sam Hain and also cleaned up Will Rhodes and Aaron Thomson in the same over. Ackermann might have felt his triple wicket over was not enough to win the game as he followed it with another such over.
He picked up the record 7th wicket on the last ball of his four overs quota by dismissing his opponent skipper Jeetan Patel. The previous best figures in T20 cricket were recorded by Arul Suppiah who took six wickets for five runs in the 2011 English T20 Cup game for Somerset against Glamorgan. The English domestic T20 competition stood host for the first-ever 4-wicket haul, 5-wicket haul, 6-wicket haul and now even the first 7-wicket haul in T20 cricket.
On the first-ever day of T20 cricket in 2003, Jimmy Ormond took 5/26 in the London Derby for Surrey. Two years later, Tim Murtagh took the first T20 6-fer also in a London Derby for Surrey. Ackermann, the former South Africa U19 player, had only one 5-fer in any format before this feat. Ackermann’s 7/18 would have been the best bowling figures by a captain in List A cricket.
Ranga Dias’ 7/23 in the 2003 Sri Lanka domestic one-day game are the best figures as a captain in List A match. In fact, Ackermann’s 7-fer is the first-ever in a limited-overs game for the Leicester team as none of their bowlers ended up taking a 7-fer in List A cricket. However, Leicestershire’s George Geary took 10/18 in the 1929 County game against Glamorgan which were the then best figures in first-class cricket but moved to No.2 when Hedley Verity took 10/10 in 1932 for Yorkshire.
Best bowling figures in T20 Cricket
The firsts in T20 Cricket
(Stats as on August 7, 2019)
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