Umar Gul: Retirement, Stats And The 2009 T20 World Cup Journey

Umar Gul, who recently retired from all forms of cricket at the age of 36 starred in Pakistan's 2009 T20 World Cup win.

The Best T20 Bowler

Umar Gul, the hero for Pakistan in the T20I World Cup 2009, recently bid farewell from all-formats of cricket after his team Balochistan’s elimination during the National T20 Cup that took place in Pakistan. He is considered to be the best T20 fast bowler for Pakistan till now. Moreover, he still ranks number 1 in ICC all time T20 rankings for the bowlers.

Also, Read – Picking Pakistan’s All-Time Test XI

However, Umar Gul best performance in T20 format was during the T20I World Cup of 2009, where he led the Pakistan’s bowling unit in the absence of Muhammad Asif and Shoaib Akhtar and steered Pakistan to their only T20 World Cup title. In that World Cup edition, Umar Gul achieved some staggering stats:

Top Wicket-Taker

Pakistani player and captain Shoaib Malik (L) gives instructions to his team pacer Umar Gul in the Twenty20 Cricket World Championship at the Kingsmead stadium in Durban, 12 September 2007. Pakistan won by 51 runs against Scotland in the limited 20 overs match. AFP PHOTO / Saeed KHAN (Photo credit should read SAEED KHAN/AFP via Getty Images)

Umar Gul was the top wicket-taker in 2009 T20 World Cup edition where he took 13 wickets in 7 games that he played for Pakistan. He was also the top wicket-taker for Pakistan in 2007 T20I World Cup edition.  This depicts his consistency and prowess as a bowler in T20 format. Additionally, most of the wicket which he took during his T20I career are through Lbw and Bowled.

Also, Read – Who is the greatest T20 batsman among Dawid Malan, Babar Azam and Virat Kohli?

Economy Rate

Pakistan’s bowler Umer Gul (C) celebrates with teammates Shahid Afridi (R) and Kamran Akmal (L) after bowliing Ireland’s Trent Johnston for a duck during a ICC World Twenty20 super-eight match at the Oval in London June 15, 2009. Pakistan scored 159 runs for the loss of five wickets and won the game by 39 runs. AFP PHOTO / Adrian DENNIS (Photo credit should read ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP via Getty Images)

During the T20I World Cup 2009, Umar Gul conceded runs with a mere economy rate of 6.44, which is a special figure considering the fact that he used to deliver his 4 overs spell in the final overs of the match when batsman try to hit every delivery out of the park. However, his ability to ball yorker at will did not allow the batsmen to free their arms and score easily.

Umar Gul and his greatest hits including the 2009 T20I World Cup

Strike Rate

LONDON, ENGLAND – JUNE 21: Umar Gul of Pakistan celebrates taking the wicket of Chamara Silva of Sri Lanka with his team mates during the ICC World Twenty20 Final between Pakistan and Sri Lanka at Lord’s on June 21, 2009 in London, England. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

Among the fast bowlers who played at least two games in the T20I World Cup 2009, his strike rate was the second best with the figure of 11.3, only below LPM Simmons from Windies who had a strike rate of 6. This represents how threatening Umar Gul  was for the batsmen during T20I World Cup 2009.

Umar Gul retires from all forms of cricket at the age of 36

5 wickets haul

Pakistan bowler Umar Gul celebrates the wicket of Peter McGlashan, out LBW, during the ICC World Twenty20 Super Eights match between New Zealand and Pakistan at The Oval, London, 13th June 2009. Umar Gul finished with five wickets for six runs from three overs. Pakistan won by 6 wickets. (Photo by Patrick Eagar/Popperfoto via Getty Images/Getty Images)

He was the only bowler in 2009 T20 World Cup to take 5 wickets in an innings. Umar Gul took five wickets against New Zealand while conceding only 6 runs in his 3 overs and was awarded the player of the match in that game. Taking 5 wickets in just 18 balls is undoubtedly some bowling figures.

Umar Gul speech and guard of honour

He also had another 5 wickets haul against South Africa in 2013 T20I match where he took 5 wickets in only 2.2 overs or 14 balls!

Summary

Umar Gul and his excellent bowling helped Pakistan win the 2009 T20 World Cup.
Pakistan captain Younis Khan (centre) lifts the trophy as the Pakistan team celebrates winning the ICC World Twenty20 Final between Pakistan and Sri Lanka by 8 wickets at Lord’s Cricket Ground, London, 21st June 2009. Pakistan players pictured include (from left) Saeed Amjal, Shahid Afridi (back, hidden), Ahmed Shehzad, Sohail Tanvir (back), Mohammad Amir, Umar Gul (back), Fawad Alam (hidden), Younis Khan, Abdul Razzaq (back, hidden), Kamran Akmal, Salman Butt (hidden) and Shoaib Malik (back). (Photo by Popperfoto via Getty Images/Getty Images)

In the World Cup 2007, Pakistan remained short of becoming the T20I champion by the margin of one boundary. However, Pakistan became T20I champion in the very next edition of year 2009 T20I World Cup. This could not have been achieved without the remarkable bowling performance by Umar Gul who was the top wicket-taker in both editions of 2007 and 2009. However, his career could have seen many more achievements like these in all-formats, had his injury in 2012 not surfaced. Nevertheless, he still is one of the best T20 bowlers till now.

2009 T20I World Cup results and summary

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