With batsmen going ballistic, bowlers are at the receiving end in the T20 format. However, some bowlers have risen to the occasion time and again. And, it’s time to celebrate them.

In a batsmen-friendly league like the IPL, bowlers often bear the brunt of batsmen’s aggression. With 20 over innings, power play, bouncer rules, and other bowling restrictions in place, it is easy to guess why.

However, some bowlers have what it takes to keep batsmen on a tight leash, and more importantly, get them out when it matters. Here’s your rundown on the top wicket-takers in the history of IPL. Each of them is a true IPL match winner with a proven track record. 

Table 01: Top 5 Wicket-takers in IPL ever (2008 to the start of 2022 season) 

BowlerMatchesRuns concededWicketsAverageEconomyRank
Lasith Malinga122336417019.797.1401
Dwayne Bravo151421916724.31 8.3502
Amit Mishra154397616623.957.3503
Piyush Chawla165430115727.397.8804
Harbhajan Singh163403015026.877.0805 
  1. Lasith Malinga

Malinga might no longer be active on the IPL circuit, but his legacy continues. The Sri Lankan speedster holds the record for the highest wickets in the IPL with 170 scalps in 122 outings. The wickets came at an impressive average of 19.79 and an economy rate of 7.14. Add to it six four-wicket hauls and one five-wicket haul, Malinga dominated a batsmen-friendly league with a mix of skill and tenacity. He delivered whenever his captain tossed the ball to him. 

Malinga was comfortable bowling at any stage of the game. He was adept at moving the ball both ways, making him a fine new-ball bowler. As a death-bowler, he bowled deadly yorkers that dipped in, making life hard for even the best of batsmen. He had an 11-year stint with Mumbai Indians, serving as the bowling mainstay of the five-time champion squad.

  1. Dwayne Bravo: 

The IPL bowling leaderboard cannot be complete without Dwayne Bravo. The Jamaican has been an integral fixture of the IPL since its debut season in 2008, taking 167 scalps in 151 games, averaging 24.31. A couple of four-wicket hauls have been the highlight of his prolific career. Kickstarting his IPL career with MI, Bravo shifted to CSK and represented it in 3 title wins.   

Bravo wasn’t a speed merchant, not even in his heydays. His weapon, however, remains an immaculate line and length that frustrates the batsmen into erring. He mixes his pace well, keeping the batsmen guessing. That makes him an ideal death-over bowler. However, he can bowl in the powerplay and middle overs as well, giving absolutely nothing away. Bravo isn’t just a fine bowler but also a capable batsman who can finish the innings with a flurry.

  1. Amit Mishra: 

Mishra failed to make a mark on the international circuit but he enjoyed a terrific run in the IPL. As of now, the leg-break bowler is ranked third on the list, thanks to 166 scalps in 154 outings for different franchises. Conceding 3976 runs in 540.5 overs, he averages 23.95 in his IPL career. At 7.35, his economy rate is exceptional for a leg-break bowler. 

Mishra has the deception of a typical leg-break bowler, deceiving batsmen with flight and turn. To his credit, he’s the only bowler with a hat-trick of hat-tricks. The first one came in the inaugural IPL edition in 2008 against Deccan Chargers. The second was achieved in the 2011 edition against Kings XI Punjab when Mishra represented Deccan Chargers. The last hat-trick unfolded in 2013 against Pune Warriors. This time, he was representing SRH.

  1. Piyush Chawla:

Chawla was unable to convert his talent into performances at the international level but in the IPL, he was a different beast altogether. In 165 matches, he accounted for 157 scalps. At 27.39, Chawla’s average is ordinary but his economy rate of 7.88 is impressive. At the peak of his career, he was capable of influencing cricket betting odds

Chawla made his debut in 2008 for Kings XI Punjab (now Punjab Kings) and switched to KKR where he was part of the title-winning team. Come 2020, CSK bought Chawla only to release him a year later following a disastrous season. His last IPL appearance was for Mumbai Indians. Sadly, at the fag-end of his career, he couldn’t find takers in the 2022 edition.

  1. Harbhajan Singh:

Another Indian spinner, Harbhajan Singh, makes his way to the fifth rank on our list. The off-spinner featured in 163 matches for IPL match winner teams, such as Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings. He finished his IPL career with 150 wickets, conceding 4030 runs and averaging 26.86. Harbhajan’s best figures read 5 wickets for 13 runs in four overs. 

Harbhajan had the aggression of a fast bowler and outstanding ball control, despite a whippy action. His ability to adjust the pace and length as per the surface and batsman made him lethal. An exponent of the Doosra, Harbhajan made the ball hurry onto the batsman, forcing him to reconsider his shot. That was his go-to wicket-taking delivery. 

Also Read: How to Start Sports Betting Online

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