Hat-trick is always a special feeling for bowlers in any format of the game. In limited-overs cricket, bowlers have more chances as the batsmen took more chances in ODIs and T20 Internationals. Still, till now there are only 49 ODI hat-tricks and 13 T20I hat-tricks recorded in men’s international cricket. Indian bowlers have taken six out of those hat-tricks.
Chetan Sharma against New Zealand, Nagpur ODI 1987
India’s first-ever ODI hat-trick came in a dramatic match during the 1987 World Cup. This was the first-ever World Cup in India and the hype was massive. India needed a big win to ensure the top spot in their Group and play the semi-final in the Wankhede Stadium. The bowlers started well and none of the Kiwi batsmen could go on to score more than 40. Sharma bowled as a first change bowler and at the death, came for another spell to restrict the total. At 182/5, the match was at balance, but Sharma got the dangerous Ken Rutherford, Ian Smith, and Ewen Chatfield in three consecutive deliveries to ensure that there is no late flourish by New Zealand. Sunil Gavaskar’s maiden ODI hundred ensured a huge win for India.
Kapil Dev against Sri Lanka, Kolkata ODI 1991
Kapil Dev’s only international hat-trick came in a convoluted manner during the 1991 Asia Cup final. Sri Lanka was batting first and at 175/ 4 looked to finish in a strong position. However, Kapil Dev got the well-set Roshan Mahanama in the last ball of his over. Before Kapil bowled his next over, Arjuna Ranatunga was run out and then Kapil came back to get Rumesh Ratnayake and Sanath Jayasuriya in the next two deliveries to complete the hat-trick. The crowd had to be reminded through the big screen that a hat-trick was completed.
Kuldeep Yadav against Australia, Kolkata ODI 2017
Indian fans had to wait for more than 26 years to celebrate India’s next ODI hat-trick which again came at the Eden Gardens during Australia’s tour of India in 2017. Batting first India posted 252 thanks to Virat Kohli’s 92. It was not a massive total in the current standard, but the pitch was also quite slow. Australia was already struggling at 148/5 when Kuldeep bamboozled the batsmen with his left-arm chinaman bowling. In the 33rd over of the Australian innings, he got Matthew Wade, Aston Agar and Pat Cummins to complete his first ODI hat-trick. He famously had an earlier hat-trick during under-19 World Cup.
Mohammed Shami against Afghanistan, Southampton ODI 2019
Mohammed Shami became the second Indian bowler to register a hat-trick in the 50-over World Cup when he finished Afghanistan’s spirited chase against India. Batting first, in a difficult pitch India could post only 224/8 in 50 overs. Afghanistan batsmen started very slowly and also kept losing wickets. At 166/6 it looked like the match was almost over but the experienced Mohammad Nabi played a special inning and his 52 took Afghanistan mighty close. Shami came to bowl the last over and got Nabi on the third ball. He then went through the defence of Afghanistan number 10 and 11 in back-to-back deliveries to complete the hat-trick and win for India.
Kuldeep Yadav against West Indies, Vishakhapatnam ODI 2019
One day cricket’s latest hat-trick came in December 2019 and it was Kuldeep Yadav who became the first Indian and overall, only the sixth bowler to have more than one hat-trick in ODIs. India had already posted a mammoth 387/5 against the touring West Indians and the visitors were never in the hunt despite some sparkling innings. Co-incidentally it was again the 33rd over of the innings when Kuldeep got his three scalps on consecutive deliveries to record his second-ever ODI hat-trick. This boy really has a knack of picking up hat-tricks.
Deepak Chahar against Bangladesh, Nagpur T20I 2019
2019 was the year of hat-tricks for India as there was a total of four hat-tricks taken by Indian bowlers. There were two in ODIs and one in Tests and then Deepak Chahar became the first-ever Indian to get a T20 International hat-trick in a record-breaking performance. The series was level at 1-1 and India needed a win to avoid the embarrassment of losing a home series against Bangladesh. Chahar was in great form. He got two early break-through and then broke the dangerous third-wicket partnership for India. Bangladesh never recovered and when Chahar got his 4th wicket in the last ball of the 18th over the match was as good as over. But Chahar still returned to bowl the 20th over with high intensity and got the last two wickets with his first two deliveries to record his hat-trick and the best over bowling analysis in T20 International. He finished with 6 wickets for just 7 runs.