Top 10: Champs Trophy bowlers

A squiz at the best bowlers who'll be charging or strolling in during the rapid-fire tournament

The ICC Champions Trophy is set to showcase the best one-day talent in the world in 15 matches across 18 days when the tournament kicks off on Thursday at The Oval.

While ODI cricket is increasingly becoming a batsman’s game, below are the 10 premier 50-over bowlers set to be on display during the competition, all of whom will be doing everything in their power to make sure ball dominates bat.

All You Need To Know Guide: Champions Trophy

10. Mashrafe Mortaza (Bangladesh)

ICC ODI bowling rank: 15

The stats: M: 175 | W: 230 | SR: 38 | RPO: 4.75 | BB: 6-26 |

The story: Bangladesh’s captain will lead from the front both as skipper and with the new ball. A tall man who’s able to extract bounce from the most lifeless of surfaces, Mortaza can inspire his charges with regular top-order wickets.

Mashrafe's warm welcome for pitch invader

9. Adil Rashid (England)

ICC ODI bowling rank: 14th

The stats: M: 46 | W: 63 | SR: 36 | RPO: 5.67 | BB: 527 |

The story: England’s leg-spinner continues to improve with each international match. Possessing a googly that’s fooled many a batsman, Rashid is perhaps England’s No.1 strike weapon this campaign. The Yorkshire product will come into his own later in the tournament as the highly-trafficked tracks take more turn.

Rashid, England thump Ireland in Bristol

8. Mitchell Santner (New Zealand)

ICC ODI bowling rank: =11th

The stats: M: 36 | W: 43 | SR: 38.9 | RPO: 4.95 | BB: 5-50 |

The story: Santner has filled the shoes of former left-arm orthodox veteran Daniel Vettori with aplomb. The 25-year-old collected a career-best 5-50 against Ireland only a few weeks ago in the Black Caps’ tri-nations series win in Dublin. Subtle variations in flight and pace compensate for the lack of a hugely-spun stock ball.  

Santner seals NZ win despite O'Brien century

7. Shakib Al Hasan (Bangladesh)

ICC ODI bowling rank: 10

The stats: M: 173 | W: 224 | SR: 39.3 | RPO: 4.38 | BB: 5-47 |

The story: Perhaps Bangladesh’s greatest-ever player, Shakib enters the Champions Trophy as the world’s No.1 all-format allrounder. On the bowling side, he’s a tricky left-arm orthodox spinner who is frugal through the middle overs. And on the batting side, he can work the ball in the gaps or, if need be, clear the rope at will. The heartbeat of Bangladesh, if Shakib does well so does his team.

Shakib secures world-first milestone against Afghanistan

6. Chris Woakes (England)

ICC ODI bowling rank: 7th

The stats: M: 62 | W: 89 | SR: 33.8 | RPO: 5.59 | BB: 6-45 |

The story: England’s highest-ranked ODI bowler has all the attributes of a top-class quick: pace, accuracy and the ability to manipulate the ball in the air and off the seam. His white-ball skills will have gone to another level after spending a season with Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League. 

Woakes, Stokes hold nerve in final-over thriller

5. Josh Hazlewood (Australia)

ICC ODI bowling rank: 6th

The stats: M: 35 | W: 55 | SR: 32.4 | RPO: 4.65 | BB: 5-31 |

The story: Tall, sharp and accurate, Hazlewood is Glenn McGrath 2.0. The right-armer nags away outside off stump with the new ball and has a knack of picking up wickets late in the innings. Hazlewood is the perfect foil for his partner in crime Mitchell Starc. More on him in a tick.

Hazlewood pumped up for Champions Trophy

4. Kagiso Rabada (South Africa)

ICC ODI bowling rank: 5th

The stats: M: 37 | W: 64 | SR: 29 | RPO: 5.13 | BB: 6-16 |

The story: The heir to the Proteas pace throne once Dale Steyn calls time on his spectacular international career, Rabada is already ruling with a maturity and skill that belies his age of 22. Blessed with raw pace and the ability to control it, it won’t be long until he sits atop this list. 

Rabada destroys England in consolation win

3. Trent Boult (New Zealand)

ICC ODI bowling rank: 4th

The stats: M: 48 | W: 87 | SR: 29.9 | RPO: 4.98 | BB: 6-33 |

The story: When swing is in the air there is perhaps no bowler in the world who can harness it better than Boult. Not as sharp as some of his quick contemporaries, Boult instead relies on swerve more than speed to snare his victims, and his stock ball across the right-hander is just as dangerous as his hooping inswinger.

Boult from the blue seals ODI series win

2. Mitchell Starc (Australia)

ICC ODI bowling rank: 2nd

The stats: M: 65 | W: 129 | SR: 24.7 | RPO: 4.81 | BB: 6-28 |

The story: The best ODI fast bowler on the planet, Starc will spearhead Australia in conditions that should aid his already intimidating armoury. When the ball is swinging he’s unmatched in world cricket, and when it’s not he has the skills and variation to still be a menace.  

Starc takes 'catch of the summer'

1. Imran Tahir (South Africa)

ICC ODI bowling rank: 1st

The stats: M: 75 | W: 127 | SR: 31 | RPO: 4.67 | BB: 7-45 |

The story: A leg-spinner with all the tricks, the Proteas veteran still boasts one of the best googlies in the game and still captures plenty of wickets with the wicked delivery. An absolute key to South Africa’s chances, Tahir will undoubtedly make an impact later in the competition on worn-out pitches, so long as the 38-year-old’s tight hamstring holds up. 

In a spin: The best white-ball googlies

Champions Trophy 2017 Guide

Squads: Every Champions Trophy squad named so far

Group A: Australia, New Zealand, England, Bangladesh.

Group B: India, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Pakistan.


Warm-up matches

26 May – Australia v Sri Lanka, The Oval

27 May – Bangladesh v Pakistan, Edgbaston

28 May – India v New Zealand, The Oval

29 May – Australia v Pakistan, Edgbaston

30 May – New Zealand v Sri Lanka, Edgbaston

30 May – Bangladesh vs India, The Oval


1 June – England v Bangladesh, The Oval (Day)

2 June – Australia v New Zealand, Edgbaston (D)

3 June – Sri Lanka v South Africa, The Oval (D)

4 June – India v Pakistan, Edgbaston (D)

5 June – Australia v Bangladesh, The Oval (D/N)

6 June – England v New Zealand, Cardiff (D)

7 June – Pakistan v South Africa, Edgbaston (D/N)

8 June – India v Sri Lanka, The Oval (D)

9 June – New Zealand v Bangladesh, Cardiff (D)

10 June – England v Australia, Edgbaston (D)

11 June – India v South Africa, The Oval (D)

12 June – Sri Lanka v Pakistan, Cardiff (D)

14 June – First semi-final (A1 v B2), Cardiff (D)

15 June – Second semi-final (A2 v B1), Edgbaston (D)

18 June – Final, The Oval (D)

19 June – Reserve day (D)

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