Australia has been one of the dominant teams in the history of the World Cups. If we look at the ODI World Cups, the nation has won five trophies. The nation knows how to win such marquee tournaments. Australia also won the T20 World Cup in 2021 in Dubai after defeating New Zealand in the final. The nation has produced some top-quality bowlers like Glenn McGrath and Shane Warne. As far as modern-day cricket is concerned, bowlers like Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, and Pat Cummins have dominated all three formats. The bowlers have always performed under pressure situations but their performance sometimes goes unnoticed. In the ODI World Cups, the Australian bowlers have always been phenomenal, and here are the top 10 Australian bowlers with the most wickets for their nation in the ODI World Cups.
1. Glenn McGrath
Arguably, one of the best seam bowlers to ever play the sport, Glenn McGrath, bowled every ball with “unplayable” written on it. His seam movements off the surface of the pitch made life tougher for the batters. On Australian pitches, McGrath played a match-defining role every time he bowled in full flow. With a sober action and not many variations, the free-flowing bowler often troubled the batters with his accurate line and length. The right-arm bowler made his ODI debut against South Africa in 1993 at the legendary Melbourne Cricket Ground. His simple and rhythmic run-up followed by accurately pitching the ball in the right areas earned him a lot of wickets. In 39 ODI World Cup matches, he took a mammoth 71 wickets.
2. Brad Hogg
One of the best Chinaman bowlers, Brad Hogg, was a maestro of spin bowling. His accurate flight and guile leading to the ball landing in perfect areas made him one of the best Aussie spinners ever to play the sport. The left-arm spinner was also a part of the Indian Premier League and played many matches for a few franchises. His wicket-taking ability while containing the batters made him a regular inclusion in the squad. The bowler played 21 ODI World Cup matches and took 34 wickets with the best bowling figures of 4-27.
3. Shane Warne
Shane Warne was a former Australian leg-spinner who redefined the art of spine bowling. The spinner used to give a lot of air to the ball which allowed the ball to drift in the air and then turn sharply to deceive the batter. His cricket sense made him one of the best students of the sport. The bowler inspired many spinners with his unbelievable control over the ball. He has bowled some unimaginable deliveries in his career. Warne made his ODI debut against New Zealand in 1993. He played 17 World Cup matches and took 32 wickets with the best bowling figures of 4-29.
4. Craig McDermott
Craig McDermott was a former Australian right-handed fast bowler who came into the international cricket arena as a 20-year-old. A proper out-swing bowler who could demolish any batting order, McDermott made his ODI debut against the West Indies in 1985. He was also a handy batter down the order who could thump big sixes. After several injuries, he returned as the bowling coach of Australia and matured young bowlers like Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood. He played 17 World Cup matches and ended up taking 27 wickets.
5. Steve Waugh
Steve Waugh was a former Australian skipper who led his nation to the famous World Cup glory in 1999. He is widely regarded among the best white-ball captains in the history of the sport. A right-arm medium bowler and a middle-order batter was the most balanced player in the Australian side in the 1990s. He made his ODI debut against New Zealand in Melbourne in 1986 and evolved nicely as an all-rounder. The player played 33 World Cup matches and took 27 wickets with the best figures of 3-36.
6. Damien Fleming
A former right-arm fast-medium bowler for Australia, Damien Fleming took a hat-trick in his first-ever test match at Rawalpindi in 1994. One of the unfortunate Australian bowlers who played less because of injuries, Fleming was a genuine out-swing bowler who troubled the batters with perfect line and length deliveries. He made his ODI debut against South Africa in 1994. The bowler took 26 ODI World Cup wickets in 16 matches with best figures of 5-36.
7. Shaun Tait
One of the fastest bowlers in the history of the game, Shaun Tait, was a former Australian bowler who bowled fire when in full flow. His long and rhythmic run-up and a perfect load-up before releasing the ball was key factor that helped him to bowl as he did. His top speed was 161.1km/hr in a match against the arch-rivals England in 2010. He made his ODI debut against the same team in 2007. The bowler played 11 World Cup matches and took 26 wickets.
8. Brett Lee
Australia was blessed to have a bowler who could bowl as fast up to 160 km/hr and swing the ball both ways. The perfect load-up before releasing the ball was a key highlight in Lee’s bowling action. The bowler took a hat-trick against Kenya in the ODI World Cup in 2003. He remains the only Australian with a World Cup hat-trick. Brett Lee took 22 wickets in 10 ODI World Cup matches.
9. Andy Bichel
Andy Bichel was a former right-arm medium-fast bowler for Australia and a hard-hitting batter down the order. He made his ODI debut against the West Indies in 1997 at the Gabba. The bowler played 8 World Cup matches and took 16 wickets. His best bowling figures were 7-20.
10. Nathan Bracken
Nathan Bracken was a former left-arm fast-medium bowler for Australia. The bowler sprinted in with his long hair dangling all the way and bowled quite decent spells. Born in New South Wales in 1977, Bracken made his ODI debut against the West Indies in 2001. He played 10 ODI World Cup matches and took 16 wickets with best figures of 4-19.