Five bowlers to watch out for at the Cricket World Cup
With the Cricket World Cup starting on October 5, we have picked five bowlers to watch out for in India.
Kuldeep Yadav (India)
Kuldeep Yadav's form dropped off dramatically after the 2019 World Cup — but he now looks back to his very best.
The 28-year-old unorthodox spinner returned to India's ODI side for the tour of the West Indies earlier this year and took seven wickets at an average of 8.71.
He was subsequently included in the Asia Cup squad where he continued to shine as Rohit Sharma's side lifted the trophy.
Yadav was named Player of the Tournament after taking nine wickets at an average of 11.44 with an equally impressive economy rate of 3.61.
On spinning pitches across India, he could wreak havoc against top-order batsmen.
Reece Topley (England)
Reece Topley's England career has been hampered by injuries.
The tall left-arm fast bowler missed last year's T20 World Cup success after damaging his ankle ligaments but looks ready to be a key man for the reigning champions at this tournament.
Topley has taken 38 wickets in his 26 ODI matches at an average of 26.81, claiming his career-best figures of 6-24 against India at Lord's last July.
The 29-year-old's 6ft 7in frame, pace and accuracy make him a lethal powerplay bowler who can trouble the very best openers.
Topley and Chris Woakes could prove to be a stellar new-ball partnership for Jos Buttler's side.
Marco Jansen (South Africa)
South Africa's rising star Marco Jansen is an even taller left-arm option than Topley, standing at an imposing 6ft 8in.
The 23-year-old paceman is yet to find consistency in ODIs after starring at Test level, recording only 18 wickets in the 50-over format at an average of 38.22.
However, Jansen goes into the World Cup on the back of a match-winning display to secure a 3-2 series victory over Australia.
He took 5-39 and scored 47 runs off 23 balls as the Proteas won by 122 runs in Johannesburg on September 17.
Jansen's Indian Premier League experience with Mumbai Indians should also make him an even deadlier weapon at captain Temba Bavuma's disposal.
Adam Zampa (Australia)
Adam Zampa will be Australia's frontline spinner as they bid to win a sixth World Cup.
The 31-year-old leg-break bowler has bags of experience in the 50-over format and boasts 142 scalps from his 85 appearances.
And even though Zampa equalled the record for worst ODI figures with 0-113 against South Africa last month, he is still a world-class operator who captain Pat Cummins will trust to take wickets in the middle overs.
Like Jansen, Zampa should also benefit from his time in the IPL, having represented Rajasthan Royals in this year's edition.
Matheesha Pathirana (Sri Lanka)
Twenty-year-old Matheesha Pathirana is nicknamed Baby Malinga — after the legendary Lasith Malinga — thanks to his slingshot bowling action.
He only made his ODI debut on June 3 against Afghanistan but has already forged quite a reputation thanks to his dazzling displays in the IPL with Chennai Super Kings.
Pathirana, who can exceed 90mph consistently, played 12 matches in CSK's triumphant 2023 campaign and took 19 wickets at an average of 19.53.
The Sri Lanka starlet already has 15 wickets from 10 ODI appearances and possesses all the tools required to emulate Malinga's achievements.