Most Wickets in a World Cup Season: Mitchell Starc

Most Wickets in a World Cup Season

Cricket, a sport that unites millions in India, has seen some remarkable performances, especially in World Cup seasons. One of the most coveted achievements for any bowler in the ICC World Cup is being the highest wicket-taker in a season.

The Pinnacle of Bowling Excellence

What Does it Take to be the Highest Wicket Taker in World Cup?

Becoming the most wickets in a World Cup season holder is not just about skill, but also about consistency, endurance, and strategic brilliance. Bowlers who achieve this feat have not only mastered their art but also understood the nuances of different pitches and conditions.

Table: Top 5 Bowlers with Most Wickets in a Single World Cup

MA Starc (AUS)ICC Cricket World Cup (in England), 20191055492.2510502275/2618.595.4320.51220
GD McGrath (AUS)ICC World Cup (in West Indies), 2006/071148580.5511357263/1413.734.4118.65000
Mohammed Shami (IND)ICC Cricket World Cup (in India), 2023/24729348.547257247/5710.705.2612.20130
WPUJC Vaas (SL)ICC World Cup (in Kenya/South Africa/Zimbabwe), 2002/031052888.01410331236/2514.393.7622.95110
M Muralidaran (SL)ICC Cricket World Cup (in India), 2023/241050884.4110351234/1915.264.1422.08200

Mitchell Starc (Australia) – 2019 World Cup

Starc had a remarkable tournament, playing 10 matches where he bowled 554 balls over 92.2 overs. He managed to keep a tight line with 5 maidens and conceded 502 runs. His wicket-taking ability was exceptional, claiming 27 wickets with a best performance of 5/26. His average was 18.59, with an economy rate of 5.43 and a strike rate of 20.51. Starc also recorded 2 instances of taking 4 wickets and 2 instances of 5 wickets in a match.

Glenn McGrath (Australia) – 2006/07 World Cup

McGrath played 11 matches, delivering 485 balls across 80.5 overs, including 5 maidens. He gave away only 357 runs while taking 26 wickets, with his best bowling figures being 3/14. His average was an impressive 13.73, maintaining an economy rate of 4.41 and a strike rate of 18.65.

Mohammed Shami (India) – 2023/24 World Cup

Shami’s performance in 7 matches was noteworthy. He bowled 293 balls over 48.5 overs, including 4 maidens, conceding 257 runs. He took 24 wickets, with his best figures being an outstanding 7/57. His average was 10.70, complemented by an economy rate of 5.26 and a strike rate of 12.20. Shami achieved 1 four-wicket haul and 3 five-wicket hauls in the tournament.

Chaminda Vaas (Sri Lanka) – 2002/03 World Cup

Vaas played 10 matches, bowling 528 balls across 88.0 overs with an impressive 14 maidens. He conceded 331 runs and took 23 wickets, with his best being 6/25. His bowling average stood at 14.39, with an economy rate of 3.76 and a strike rate of 22.95. Vaas also achieved 1 four-wicket and 1 five-wicket haul during the tournament.

Muttiah Muralidaran (Sri Lanka) – 2023/24 World Cup

Muralidaran’s performance included 10 matches where he bowled 508 balls over 84.4 overs, with just 1 maiden. He conceded 351 runs while taking 23 wickets, with best figures of 4/19. His average was 15.26, and he maintained an economy rate of 4.14 and a strike rate of 22.08. Muralidaran managed to take 4 wickets twice in the tournament. Muralidaran is also the highest wicket-taker in ODI in cricket history.

Memorable Performances

The 2003 World Cup and India’s Bowling Highlights

In 2003, Indian bowlers displayed some exceptional skills, contributing significantly to the team reaching the finals. Though none topped the most wickets in World Cup chart that year, their efforts were commendable.

Spotlight on the 2011 World Cup

The 2011 World Cup, held in India, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka, saw some of the best bowling performances. Indian bowlers played a crucial role, with Zaheer Khan tying for the highest wicket-taker in the World Cup that year.


The record of most wickets in a World Cup season is a testament to a bowler’s skill and strategic acumen. It’s a record that every aspiring bowler dreams of and every cricket fan watches with anticipation.

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