Who was the first bowler to claim five hat-tricks in international cricket?

The first bowler to claim five hat-tricks in international cricket, of any description, was former Sri Lankan right-arm fast bowler Separamadu Lasith Malinga. He did so in the third of three Twenty20 International (T20I) matches against New Zealand in Pallekele on September 6, 2019. In fact, he not only dismissed Colin Munro, Hamish Rutherford and Colin de Grandhomme with the third, fourth and fifth balls over the third over of the match, but also Ross Taylor with the sixth, thereby taking four wickets in as many balls for the second time in his career.

The first time achieved the feat – and with it, of course, his first One Day International (ODI) hat-trick – against South Africa in an International Cricket Council (ICC) match in Providence on March 28, 2007. On that occasion, he took the wickets of Shaun Pollock, Andrew Hall, Jacques Kallis and Makhaya Ntini in four successive deliveries during the ‘death’ overs of the match. For the record, Malinga achieved his three other ‘regulation’ hat-tricks against Kenya in Colombo on March 1, 2011, against Australia in Colombo on August 11, 2011 and against Bangladesh, again in Colombo, on April 6, 2017.

Renowned for his distinctive, authentically roundarm – but, nonetheless, legal – bowling action, which led to his nickname, ‘Slinga Malinga’, the former Sri Lankan captain was a particularly potent force in limited overs cricket. He was a fine exponent of the yorker or, in other words, a delivery that pitches in, or close to, the blockhole, thereby preventing the batsman from lifting the ball into the air and, hence, over the boundary. Like any effective death bowler, he also bowled slowed-than-usual deliveries, to keep the batsman guessing at a time when he was looking to play aggressively.

Post Navigation