Most Wickets Taken by a Bowler in a Debut Series

A debut Test can be termed as the most nervous times in a cricketer’s career. Be it a batsman or bowler, it is always difficult to start delivering as soon as they arrive on the International stage. However, there have been bowlers who have made their debut special by making a mockery of the opposition batting line-up.

One such special player was Australian quick Rodney Hogg, who took as many as 41 wickets in his debut Ashes series in England in 1981. On his 67th birthday today, we bring you the list of bowler’s taking maximum number of wickets in the debut test series

Terry Alderman
Australian cricketer Terry Alderman appeals for an lbw decision after a ball to Boycott during the 5th test match against England at Manchester, August 1981


1.  Terry Alderman: Australia (The Ashes – Australia in England, 1981) – 42 wickets

The West Australian pacer took 42 English wickets in his debut series, but unfortunately, Australia lost the Ashes by a 3-1 margin, after registering a close victory in the first match. Alderman was the bright spot in the otherwise dull tour, taking a five-wicket haul on four occasions with a best of 6/135. His best match figures were 9/130 in the first test of the series.

2.  Rodney Hogg: Australia (The Ashes – England in Australia, 1978-79) – 41 wickets

The Victorian pacer who bowled at a lightning quick pace took 41 wickets in 1978-79 Ashes series, which was also lost by Australia by a hefty 5-1 margin. Australia's only success came in the third test match of the series, which they won by 103 runs. Hogg had five fifers to his name and twice he went on to take 10 wickets. His best figures in a match were 10/66.

3.  Arthur Mailey: Australia (The Ashes – England in Australia, 1920-21) – 36 wickets

Another Australian on the coveted list, Mailey had 36 scalps to his leg-break against the English batsmen in a series where Australia recorded clean-sweep by 5-0. He took four fifers and twice completed the 10-wickets in a match haul. His best figures in an innings were 9/121 while those in a match were 13 for 236.

4.  Alf Valentine: West Indies (West Indies in England test series, 1950) – 33 wickets

The Jamaican left-arm spinners managed 33 scalps in his West Indies’ 3-1 victory in 1950. He outfoxed the English batsmen and managed two fifers and an equal number of ten-wicket match hauls. His best figures in an innings were 8 for 104 while he took 11 giving away 204 runs in one of the matches.

Alf Valentine
West Indian cricketer Alfred Louis Valentine (1930 – 2004)


5.  Colin Croft: West Indies (Pakistan in West Indies Test Series, 1976-77) – 33 wickets

The Caribbean pacer managed to knock off 33 Pakistani wickets in a series which the hosts won 2-1, winning the second and fifth game. Awkwardly, the wickets contained just one fifer and no ten wickets hauls. His best figures in an innings were 8/29, while those in a match were 9 for 95. We won the Man of the Match award in the second game of the series.

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