Golden Ball Winner in ODI World Cup is awarded to the highest wicket taker in the tournament. This is the most notable award for any bowler, as it is difficult to bowl and get wickets in high-pressure games like the World Cup. Moreover, a bowler has to compete against not only batters but companion bowlers, as every team has the highest-rated and top-ranked bowlers in their squad. To win the golden ball and get the most wickets, every bowler has to perform in every game, as one bad performance can get you down on the list.
Read More: Golden Bat Winner in ODI World Cup
The competition for the Golden Ball winner is so high that the greatest spinner in cricket history, Mutiah Muralidharan, failed to win this title. Mitchel Starc from Australia, on the other hand, is the only bowler who succeeded in winning two Golden Ball awards in 2015 and 2019. The table below visualizes the Golden Ball winner in the ODI World Cup from 1975 to 2023:
Golden Ball Winner List by ODI World Cup (1975 to 2023)
|1975||Gary Gilmour (AUSTRALIA)|
Bernard Julien (WEST INDIAIES)
|1979||Mike Hendrick (ENGLAND)||10|
|1983||Roger Binny (INDIA)||18|
|1987||Craig McDermott (AUSTRALIA)||18|
|1992||Wasim Akram (PAKISTAN)||18|
|1996||Anil Kumble (INDIA)||15|
|1999||Geoff Allott (NEW ZEALAND)|
Shane Warne (AUSTRALIA)
|2003||Chaminda Vaas (SRI LANKA)||23|
|2007||Glenn McGrath (AUSTRALIA)||26|
|2011||Zaheer Khan (INDIA)|
Shahid Afridi (PAKISTAN)
|2015||Mitchell Starc (AUSTRALIA)|
Trent Boult (NEW ZEALAND)
|2019||Mitchell Starc (AUSTRALIA)||27|
Gary Gilmour and Bernard Julien – Golden Ball Winner in 1975 World Cup
Garry Gilmour from Australia and Bernard Julien from West Indies won the golden ball in the 1975 ODI World Cup. Gary Gilmour played only two games and took 5 wicket haul in both innings. He took six wickets against Australia by conceding only 14 runs at Leeds and five wickets in the second game against West Indies by giving 48 runs at Lords.
|12||5||48||v West Indies||Lord’s|
Bernard Julien took two four wickets hauls in two games against Sri Lanka and New Zealand by conceding 20 and 27 runs.
Mike Hendrick – Golden Ball Winner in 1979 ODI World Cup
Mike Hendrick is the winner of Golden Ball in 1979 with 10 wickets. He played a key role for England in reaching the final of ODI World Cup with his bowling performance. He took four and three wickets against Pakistan and New Zealand in group matches by giving very few runs. Moreover, he took two wickets in the final match against West Indie.
|12||55||3||v New Zealand||Manchester|
|12||50||2||v West Indies||Lord’s|
Roger Binny – Golden Ball Winner in 1983 ODI World Cup
Roger Binny’s bowling is one of the main reasons behind India’s win in the 1983 ODI World Cup. He was a consistent performer for India in this World Cup and took wickets in every game at a crucial time and eventually won the first golden ball for India.
Binny took 18 wickets in this World Cup, including a match-winning performance against Australia that was considered a favorite for this season. He got four wickets in that game, and all of them were Aussie’s premier batters. As a result, Australia collapsed at 129 while chasing 247 runs.
|12||48||3||v West Indies||Manchester|
|12||71||3||v West Indies||The Oval|
|11||45||2||v Zimbabwe||Tunbridge Wells|
|10||23||1||v West Indies||Lord’s|
Craig McDermott – Golden Ball Winner in 1987 ODI World Cup
In 1987, Australia won their first ODI World Cup due to the outstanding performance of their batters and bowlers. Craige McDermott took the highest wickets in that World Cup and won the golden ball. He played 8 matches and took eight wickets with an economy rate of 4.67. He took a five-wicket haul in the semi-final by conceding only 44 runs and getting Australia to the final.
|6||30||1||v New Zealand||Indore|
|10||43||1||v New Zealand||Chandigarh|
|10||51||1||v England||Eden Gardens|
Wasim Akram – Golden Ball Winner in 1992 ODI World Cup
Wasim Akram is the finest swing bowler in cricket history. His ability to swing the ball inside and outside made him unplayable. He used this tactic superbly in the 1992 cricket world and helped Pakistan win their first and only ODI World Cup under the captaincy of Imran Khan.
Wasim Akram became the Golden Ball winner of the 1992 World Cup by getting 18 wickets. His most impactful bowling spell came against England in the Final. But his best bowling figure was against New Zealand, where he got four wickets by conceding 32 runs.
|9.2||32||4||v New Zealand||Christchurch|
|10||40||2||v New Zealand||Auckland|
|10||42||2||v South Africa||Brisbane|
|10||37||1||v Sri Lanka||Perth|
|10||37||0||v West Indies||Melbourne|
Anil Kumble – Golden Ball Winner in 1996 ODI World Cup
Anil Kumble was the highest wicket-taker in 1996 World Cup. He took 15 wickets in seven matches with an economy rate of 4.03. He took three wickets in three games against Pakistan, West Indies and Kenya. He became the second Golden Ball winner for India after Roger Binny.
|10||35||3||v West Indies||Gwalior|
|10||39||2||v Sri Lanka||Delhi|
|10||51||1||v Sri Lanka||Eden Gardens|
Geoff Allott and Shane Warne – Golden Ball Winner in 1999 ODI World Cup
In 1999, two bowlers shared the Golden Ball Award. Shane Warne from Australia and Geoff Allott from New Zealand took 20 wickets in the tournament. Geoff Allott took nine games to dismiss 20 batters as New Zealand could not qualify for the final.
On the other hand, Shane Warne took 20 wickets in 10 games. His match-winning performance against Pakistan will be written in golden words.
|10||29||4||v South Africa||Birmingham|
|10||11||3||v West Indies||Manchester|
|10||33||2||v South Africa||Leeds|
|10||44||1||v New Zealand||Cardiff|
|6.2||49||0||v India||The Oval|
Chaminda Vaas – Golden Ball Winner in 2003 ODI World Cup
Chaminda Vaas is the finest bowler produced by Sri Lankan Cricket. He won the Golden Ball in 2003 in the presence of big names like Waseem Akram, Glenn McGrath, Shane Warne, Waqar Younis, and Anil Kumble.
|10||22||4||v West Indies||Cape Town|
|10||41||3||v Kenya||Nairobi (Gym)|
|9.5||46||2||v Zimbabwe||East London|
|7||22||0||v New Zealand||Bloemfontein|
|7||33||0||v South Africa||Durban|
Batters were clueless while facing his swinging deliveries. He succeeded in returning 23 batters to the pavilion in 10 ODI matches. His best bowling figures of this event came against Bangladesh when he took six wickets for 25 runs at Pietermaritzburg.
Glenn McGrath – Golden Ball Winner in 2007 ODI World Cup
This was the last World Cup of Glenn McGrath and his last chance to win the Golden Ball. He utilizes his 14 years of experience and bowls some unbelievable deliveries.
He became the highest wicket-taker in a single World Cup by breaking the record of Chminda Vaas. In 11 games, he took 26 wickets by conceding only 357 runs in the whole World Cup.
|5||16||3||v Bangladesh||North Sound|
|8||18||3||v South Africa||Gros Islet|
|8||31||3||v West Indies||North Sound|
|9.5||62||3||v England||North Sound|
|4||25||2||v New Zealand||St George’s|
|9||48||2||v Sri Lanka||St George’s|
|7||31||1||v Sri Lanka||Bridgetown|
|9||62||1||v South Africa||Basseterre|
Shahid Afrid and Zaheer Khan – Golden Ball Winner in 2011 ODI World Cup
Zaheer Khan and Shahid Afridi won the Golden Ball Award in 2011 by getting 21 wickets in the World Cup. Indian bowling lineup relied on Zaheer Khan, and he performed up to the mark and bowled four match-winning spells in nine games.
|6||26||3||v West Indies||Chennai|
|10||60||2||v Sri Lanka||Wankhede|
|10||43||1||v South Africa||Nagpur|
On the other hand, Shahid Afridi took 21 wickets in 8 matches, including two five-wicket hauls against Kenya and Canada.
South Asian teams completely dominated this World Cup, as three of the semi-finalists were from this region: Sri Lanka, India, and Pakistan. Sri Lanka and India qualified for the finals, which India eventually won.
Mitchell Starc and Trent Boult – Golden Ball Winner in 2015 ODI World Cup
Mitchell Starc and Trent Boult are the heroes of the 2015 World Cup. Both of them know their quick bowling, but at the same time, both are totally different. Mitchell Starc has a little sligny action and is known for his fierce yorker deliveries. On the other hand, Trent Boult is famous for his good length deliveries moving away from the batter.
|10||44||4||v West Indies||Wellington|
|9||53||2||v South Africa||Auckland|
|10||64||2||v Sri Lanka||Christchurch|
They won the 2015 ODI World Cup Golden Ball Award by getting 22 wickets. Mitchell Starc balled his best spell against New Zealand and took six wickets by conceding only 28 runs. At the same time, Trent Boult took five wickets against Australia. Surprisingly, these two masters pieces were bowled in a single match at Auckland on 28th February.
Mitchell Starc – Golden Ball Winner in 2019 World Cup
Although Australia could not qualify for the final of the ODI world Cup 2019. But Mithell Starc won the hear of million of cricket fans across the globe with his unplayable yorker. He became the first and only bowler with two Golden Ball awards in ODI world cup.
He took 27 wickets in this world cup and became the highest wicket taker in a single world by breaking the record of his country mate greate Glenn McGrath.
|9.4||26||5||v New Zealand||Lord’s|
|10||46||5||v West Indies||Nottingham|
|10||55||4||v Sri Lanka||The Oval|
|9||59||2||v South Africa||Manchester|
|10||74||1||v India||The Oval|
Golden Ball Winner in ODI World Cup 2023
There are many contenders for Golden Ball in the 2023 ODI World Cup. Winners of the 2015 and 2018 World Cup Trent Boult and Mitchell Starc are also in the row. Moreover, a few New faces that could win the Golden Ball Award are Mohammad Siraj from India, Shaheen Shah Afridi from Pakistan, Mark Wood from England, and Kagiso Rabada from South Africa are favorite.
Which Country Won Most Golden Ball Awards?
The Australia Cricket team has won the most Golden Ball Awards in ODI World. They succeeded in winning this title in ODI World Cup 1975, 1987, 1999, 2007, 2015, and 2019.
Indian Team is second on the list with three awards that were won in 1983, 1996, and 2011. Pakistan and New Zealand are third on the list with two awards.