Australia vs Namibia scorecard, Adam Zampa four wickets, Shane Warne, video, highlights, cricket news

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The late Shane Warne remains Australia’s undisputed greatest spinner in white-ball cricket, but that might not be the case in five years.

Since he was dropped from Australia’s starting XI during the 2019 World Cup, Adam Zampa has established himself as one of the most important figures in the national white-ball side.

The leg-spinner was Australia’s leading wicket-taker during the triumphant 2021 T20 World Cup in the United Arab Emirates and last year’s World Cup campaign in India.

On Wednesday morning AEST, he became the first Australian to take 100 wickets in men’s T20Is, claiming 4-12 during the nine-wicket thrashing of Namibia in Antigua.

Zampa won player of the match honours following both of Australia’s T20 World Cup wins over England and Namibia, snaring eight wickets at 8.00 in the tournament to date.

“If you look at his career, especially over the last five years, he’s probably our most important player,” Australian captain Mitchell Marsh said on Wednesday.

“He loves the big moment, loves the pressure, and that comes with experience.

“He’s bowling beautifully at the moment, so we’re lucky to have him.”

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Adam Zampa of Australia. Photo by Ashley Allen/Getty ImagesSource: Getty Images

Comparing any leg-spinner to Warne is considered blasphemy by many, but Zampa’s recent achievements on the international stage puts him in the conversation for the mantle of Australia’s greatest white-ball spinner.

The two-time World Cup champion has taken 269 wickets at 25.60 in the one-day formats, which is marginally behind Warne’s career tally of 293 scalps at 25.73.

“Regardless of the conditions he’s fronted with, or the opposition, he continually gets the job done,” former Australian captain Aaron Finch said.

“He’s just a wonderful competitor … he’s a wonderful bowler, as good as there is in the world at the moment.”

Zampa has an uncanny knack for dismissing the opposition’s best batter — he has toppled Indian superstar Virat Kohli on eight occasions, while both of England’s openers fell victim to the tweaker during last week’s crucial T20 World Cup contest in Barbados.

The 32-year-old, who withdrew from the recent Indian Premier League due to family commitments, relentlessly attacks the stumps through the middle overs, making him a constant threat as he expertly varies his speed and length.

Lowest bowling average in Men’s T20 World Cups

8.60 — Anrich Nortje (RSA)

11.68 — Wanindu Hasaanga (SL)

11.93 — Adam Zampa (AUS)

13.58 — Samuel Badree (WI)

13.82 — Rashid Khan (AFG)

* Minimum 20 wickets

Zampa repeatedly steps up for Australia at ICC tournaments — in T20 World Cups, he has taken 31 wickets at 11.93 with an economy rate of 5.96, figures that are only bettered by Sri Lanka’s Wanindu Hasaanga.

The wrist-spinner has won seven player of the match awards in ICC tournaments, more than any bowler in history — but despite his ongoing success, Zampa remains humble.

“I bowled a couple of pies tonight,” he laughed after Australia’s victory over Namibia.

Australia, having qualified for the Super Eights stage of the T20 World Cup, will next face Scotland at Sir Vivian Richards Stadium on Sunday morning, with the first ball scheduled for 10.30am AEST.

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