Indian fast bowler Jasprit Bumrah is in the form of his life at the moment. After becoming the first Asian bowler to have a five-wicket haul against his name in West Indies, Australia, England and South Africa – as he blew away the Windies in the first Test match a week ago – he continued his good form with a six-for in the second Test in the Caribbean.

The 25-year-old’s most recent effort also included a stunning hat-trick which made him just the third Indian to achieve this feat in the longest format. This has led to many fans and former cricketers calling him the best pacer in the world currently.

Bumrah has been impressive ever since he made his international debut in 2016. He’d burst onto the scene after his exploits in T20 cricket in the Indian Premier League, but he managed to land a Test debut at the start of 2018 and has gone on to become one of India’s biggest strengths in red-ball cricket.

After the first Test against West Indies, Team India’s bowling coach Bharat Arun said that Bumrah’s spell was the best he’d ever seen by an Indian pacer. Even Windies great Andy Roberts was compelled to term him the finest Indian fast bowler he’d ever seen.

While there’s no denying that Bumrah is headed towards greatness, is he really the best fast bowler – across formats – in the world at the moment?

Top pacers in Tests since Jan 5, 2018

Player Matches [Innings] Wickets Average Strike-rate
Kagiso Rabada [SA] 14 [28] 71 21.01 37.8
Pat Cummins [AUS] 13 [25] 67 19.17 41.9
Jasprit Bumrah [IND] 12 [24] 62 19.24 43.7
Stuart Broad [ENG] 16 [31] 59 24.16 51.2
Mohammed Shami [IND] 15 [29] 58 25.68 47.1

Top pacers in ODIs since Jan 23, 2016

Player Matches [Innings] Wickets Average Strike-rate
Trent Boult [NZ] 61 [61] 115 25.73 29.5
Jasprit Bumrah [IND] 58 [58] 103 21.88 29.2
Kagiso Rabada [SA] 65 [63] 96 28.89 34.5
Liam Plunkett [ENG] 55 [53] 90 27.02 28.1
Chris Woakes [ENG] 58 [55] 87 28.06 30.8

Top pacers in T20Is since Jan 26, 2016

Player Matches [Innings] Wickets Average Strike-rate
Jasprit Bumrah [IND] 42 [42] 51 20.17 18.0
Mustafizur Rahman [BAN] 23 [23] 38 18.39 13.1
Chris Jordan [ENG] 30 [30] 38 24.73 17.1
Andrew Tye [AUS] 26 [25] 37 22.02 14.8
Hardik Pandya [IND] 38 [37] 36 25.61 18.4
On mobile phone, scroll across to view full table

The three tables above show the top five wicket-takers among fast bowlers since the time Bumrah made his international debut in each of those formats up until the end of the second India-West Indies Test.

As you can see, Bumrah is the only bowler who features in all three lists. Since making his international debut, he is among the top five highest wicket-takers in Tests, One-Day Internationals and T20Is. The 25-year-old has been India’s go-to man across formats and conditions for the past couple of years.

He, however, has got stiff competition from the likes of Boult, Rabada and Cummins, who have been consistent performers for their respective countries for a while now. Even England’s Jofra Archer, for that matter, has taken international cricket by storm with his aggressive bowling in the ICC World Cup and the ongoing Ashes.

So, looking at all the fast bowling talent in the world at the moment, is it fair to say that Bumrah is the No 1 across all formats?

What do you think? Click here to join the debate.

[All statistics via ESPNcricinfo Statsguru]

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