Spinners are a vital asset to any bowling unit. They play an important role in controlling the course of the game. Typically, there are two types of spinners One is finger spinners, and the other is wrist spinners. Being a wrist spinner is a tough job to do. Wrist spinners tend to turn the ball more than a finger spinner would do. Spinners turning the ball would also depend on the surface on which they are playing; traditionally, in a test match, spinners tend to turn the ball more as the game progresses to days 3,4, and 5 as most of the wickets start to deteriorate by then, which makes the batsman’s life difficult. Let us see the top 10 wrist spinners in test cricket.
10. Danish Kaneria
Danish Prabha Shanker Kaneria is a former Pakistani right-arm leg-break bowler. Danish was known for his googly. Former Australian cricketer Richie Benaud complimented Danish’s googly as the ‘best disguised’ he has ever seen. Danish picked 261 wickets in 61 Tests, which made him Pakistan’s highest wicket-taking spinner.
9. Stuart MacGill
Stuart Charles Glyndwr MacGill is a former Australian right-arm leg spinner. The spin wizard represented Australia in 44 Tests and 3 ODIs. He picked up 208 wickets in 44 Tests. He didn’t get enough recognition as he lived in the shadow of Shane Warne. Stuart had a better googly than Shane and had outclassed Shane’s performance in many instances. But Stuart didn’t manage to keep up the pressure and bowled two or three loose deliveries every over, making life easily for the batsmen.
8. Mushtaq Ahmed
Mushtaq Ahmed Malik is a former Pakistani cricketer and currently acts as a Pakistan spin coach. He idolized Abdul Qadir and practiced the same bowling action as his. Mushtaq succeeded Abdul Qadir in the Pakistani test team and became a match-winner in no time. Mushtaq had a stunning googly in his arsenal, which made him more decisive. He played 52 tests and bagged 185 wickets as a whole. However, Mushtaq was off the spotlight for the national team and continued his career in county cricket.
7. Subhash Gupte
Subhash Chandra Pandharinath “Fergie” Gupte was one of India’s finest leg spinners. Coming from the 1950s, he was dominant against teams like the West Indies, who were a very strong side during his reign. Sir Gary Roberts flattered Subhash Gupte as the greatest leg-spinner he has ever seen. Gupte played 36 Tests and scalped 149 wickets.
6. Richie Benaud
Richie Benaud is a former Australian leg spinner. He is a highly regarded commentator of the game. Benaud bagged 248 wickets in just 63 Tests and he played his last match in 1964. He also made worthy contributions with the bat down the order.
5. Bill O’Reilly
William Joseph O’Reilly was an Australian cricketer. He is pronounced as one the greatest bowlers of the game. The tall and gangly cricketer was also called a ‘Tiger’ for his aggressive nature. Even the Great Don Bradman rated Bill as the best bowler he had ever seen. He picked 144 wickets in just 24 Tests for Australia.
4. BS Chandrasekhar
Bhagwat Subramanya Chandrasekhar is a former Indian International. He suffered from polio in his early days; he converted that drawback into his most significant advantage through his bowling. He was known for his unpredictability in bowling. He picked 242 wickets in 58 Tests for India. His heroics were not talked about enough by his colleagues. However, he is among the top 5 leg-spinners in Test history.
3. Abdul Qadir
Abdul Qadir Khan is a former Pakistani cricketer. He is always among the top echelon of leg-spinners. He had a lethal googly, which was a nightmare for many batters. He is known as the dancing bowler for his uncanny bowling style. He bagged 236 wickets in 67 Tests and has the best figures as a Pakistan bowler in Test cricket.
2. Anil Kumble
Anil Kumble is a former Indian cricketer. Being belittled early in his career for not possessing that lateral spin, or spinning a web around the batsman as many great leggies do. But with his accuracy, Kumble rose from ashes and proved his worth by picking 619 wickets in just 132 Tests. He achieved the rare feat of bagging all the ten wickets in an innings. Whenever there is a talk about great spinners, Kumble is right there among the top players.
1. Shane Warne
Shane Keith Warne is the best leg-spinner in the history of cricket, hailing from Australia. He redefined spin bowling like never before. He ended his mighty and stunning Test career by picking 708 wickets in 145 Tests. Warne was an inspiration for many to take up spin bowling as their career. Shane Warne is right up there among the greatest to ever grace the game.