World Cup Games, 2010 Asia Cup Final: Top 8 Ashish Nehra Spells

As the speedster’s 18-year international career comes to a close, here’s a look at Nehra’s top 8 spells.

5 min read
File photo of Ashish Nehra.

India’s veteran fast bowler Ashish Nehra hung up his boots after India’s T20 victory over New Zealand in New Delhi on 1 November. The same ground where he made his Ranji debut for Delhi over 20 years back.

Nehra is not just a World Cup winner, or a pacer who won India many matches, but also a sportsperson who inspired many persons to not give up.

Every time Nehra was sidelined due to an injury, he would fight back and get back into the Indian team. The 38-year-old has undergone 12 surgeries in his cricketing career.

As the speedster’s 18-year international career comes to a close, here’s a look at Nehra’s top 8 spells.


1. 6/23 vs England, World Cup, 2003

Ashish Nehra’s best spell in his international career has to be the six-wicket haul against England in the 2003 World Cup.

India had posted a modest total of 250/9 after opting to bat first at the toss. Zaheer Khan got India off to a good start by dismissing Marcus Trescothick. England were reduced to 18/2 in 6.4 overs.

Thereafter the Ashish Nehra onslaught began.

Nehra sent captain Nasser Hussain (caught behind) and Alec Stewart (LBW) back to the pavilion in successive deliveries in the 17th over.

A couple of overs later, Michael Vaughan was out caught behind, leaving England reeling at 62/5.

A few overs later, Nehra continued his rampage, picking up the wickets of Paul Collingwood, Craig White and Ronnie Irani.

England were eventually all out for 168 runs.

Nehra’s figures of 6/23 is the best figures recorded by an Indian bowler in a World Cup match.

2. 6/59 vs Sri Lanka, Indian Oil Cup Final, 2005

In the Indian Oil Cup final in 2005, it seemed like India had only one bowler going at the Sri Lankan batsmen. Nehra had quickly dismissed Marvan Atapattu, Dilhara Lokuhettige and Kumar Sangakkara at the start of the innings. Sri Lanka were reduced to 67/3 by 13.1 overs.

But thereafter India managed to get only one wicket until the 46th over.

Nehra pulled things back in the death overs when he removed Mahela Jayawardene, Tillakaratne Dilshan and Upul Chandana.

The pacer was the only Indian amongst the wickets in the match. The Men in Blue picked up three more wickets through run outs.

Sri Lanka eventually scored 281/9, which proved a bit too much for India as the Men in Blue lost by 18 runs.


3. 4/40 vs Sri Lanka, Asia Cup Final, 2010

It was another final and Ashish Nehra stepped up once again. After India posted a total of 268/6, the Indian bowlers still had to go out there and ensure a victory for their team.

The opening bowlers Praveen Kumar and Zaheer Khan got India off to a great start by sending Tillakaratne Dilshan and Upul Tharanga back to the pavilion by the 8th over.

Thereafter, Nehra took over.

The speedster dismissed Mahela Jayawardene and Angelo Mathews in the 14th over. A couple of overs later, Kumar Sangakkara mis-timed a pull shot and was out caught. Nehra picked up his third wicket and Sri Lanka were tottering at 51/5.

Sri Lanka could never recover from there and were eventually all out for 187 runs.

4. 2/33 vs Pakistan, 2011 World Cup

Ashish Nehra appeals for a wicket.
Ashish Nehra appeals for a wicket.
(Photo: Reuters)

India-Pakistan is always a big game, but in a World Cup, it’s even bigger. The Men in Blue didn’t manage to post a big score on the board after electing to bat first. India scored 260/9 in their 50 overs.

While Zaheer Khan, Munaf Patel, Harbhajan Singh and Yuvraj Singh got the big wickets, Nehra maintained an excellent economy rate throughout the match.

He was also amongst the wickets towards the end of the match, when he dismissed Wahab Riaz and Umar Gul.

He conceded only 33 runs in his quota of 10 overs.


5. 4/47 vs New Zealand, 2010

Ashish Nehra celebrates a wicket with his teammates.
Ashish Nehra celebrates a wicket with his teammates.
(Photo: Reuters)

In the first match of the triangular series in Sri Lanka, Ashish Nehra and Praveen Kumar got India off to a flier, when the duo reduced New Zealand to 28/3 in 6.5 overs.

Martin Guptill and Kane Williamson fell to Praveen Kumar, while Nehra got the better of Peter Ingram.

However, thereafter, Scott Styris and Ross Taylor added 190 runs until the 39th over.

Nehra pulled things back for the Indian team in the final overs by dismissing Taylor on 95 and Daryl Tuffey, who was looking dangerous. New Zealand were eventually all out for 288 runs.

But the Indian batting line-up failed to fire and were bundled out for a mere 88.

6. 2/22 vs South Africa, T20, 2011

Ashish Nehra bowls out Hashim Amla.
Ashish Nehra bowls out Hashim Amla.
(Photo: Reuters)

After the Indians posted a modest total of 168/6, a disciplined bowling performance was required by the Men in Blue.

Ashish Nehra, who opened the bowling with Praveen Kumar, got the first breakthrough for the team in the second over.

Nehra managed to go past Hashim Amla’s defence and the Proteas were on the back-foot straight away.

The speedster came back later in the innings to wrap it up. He dismissed Johan Botha in the final over of the match.

India won the match by 21 runs.


7. 3/28 vs England, T20, 2017

Ashish Nehra shares a moment with Jasprit Bumrah.
Ashish Nehra shares a moment with Jasprit Bumrah.
(Photo: Reuters)

Ashish Nehra put his hand up once again in a crunch match against England. The Three Lions were leading in the three-match series 1-0.

India managed to post a relatively low total of 144/8.

In comes Nehra.

The speedster provided the perfect start by dismissing the English openers Jason Roy and Sam Billings by the 4th over.

And later in the innings, when Ben Stokes was in a position to take England to victory, Nehra trapped the English all rounder LBW.

India eventually won the match by 5 runs.

8. 4/35 vs Sri Lanka, World Cup, 2003

File photo of Ashish Nehra. 
File photo of Ashish Nehra. 
(Photo: Reuters)

In this particular match, Ashish Nehra just had to run in and keep picking up wickets without any pressure.

Zaheer Khan and Javagal Srinath had decimated the top and middle order, leaving Sri Lanka reeling at 40/5.

Thereafter Nehra took over and rattled the lower order.

After taking the wicket of Kumar Sangakkara, Nehra dismissed Chaminda Vaas, Prabath Nissanka and Muttiah Muralitharan.

Sri Lanka were all out for 109 runs in 23 overs. India won the match by 183 runs.


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