On Wednesday night, Ashish Nehra became the first left-arm bowler in the history of the Indian Premier League to capture 100 wickets. The 37-year-old achieved the mark when he removed Sreenath Arvind during the opening game of the season against the Royal Challengers Bangalore.
The journey in the IPL has been one of much intrigue for the Delhi cricketer, who began by playing for the Mumbai Indians in 2008, before moving to the Delhi Daredevils, later to the Chennai Super Kings and finally landing at the Sunrisers Hyderabad.
Fighting injury-after-injury, Nehra forged his way through up the ranks and beat several of his contemporaries to the top of the table. The second best after him, as far as left-arm bowlers are concerned is Zaheer Khan, who taken 92 wickets in 89 matches and looks set to take more after confirming his availability for the 10th edition of the competition.
Pragyan Ojha, who is among the few to have won three IPL titles, is third on the list, with 89 wickets in 92 matches. Irfan Pathan, who found no buyer during the auction held in February, is in fourth place with 80 wickets in 102 matches.
Also part of the list are the likes of Ravindra Jadeja, James Faulkner, Axar Patel etc. Iqbal Abdullah, not a player expected to start in every game for any franchise, also features with 38 wickets in 47 games.
What makes Nehra stand apart from the rest is that unlike him, most of the other bowlers are not as big an injury suspects for their teams and so the worry factor over how many matches they will play for the side is not even half as compared to what it is with Nehra.
The IPL has played a key role in the 37-year-old making a comeback in the shortest format of the game for India and if he does go through the entire 10th season and picks up sufficient wickets, then he could be in the reckoning for a place in the Champions Trophy squad as well.
Here’s the table with the Top 10 left-handed wicket-takers: