Australia: Dirk Nannes

Matches: 203,Wickets: 246,Average:  21.56,Strike rate: 17.77,Economy Rate: 7.28

Australian via Dutch lineage, Dirk Nannes did not make his first-class debut until the age of 29 and, since 2010, has focused solely on becoming one of the most effective T20 bowlers in the game. 

As a T20 specialist, he has played for a remarkable 14 different domestic sides in seven different countries, including four English counties and three IPL franchises.

His influence has been keenly felt, particularly at Middlesex where he took 14 wickets to help them to their sole Twenty20 Cup victory in 2008 and for Victoria Bushrangers, a team he helped secure two T20 Big Bash titles.

The latter two showed why he is so highly valued in the format with top-class performances in both finals. In 2008, he took 4/23 versus Western Australia to help bowl them out short of their target, and in 2010 his miserly 1/8 from four overs played a significant part in restricting South Australia to just 118/9 in pursuit of 166.

After an initial stint with the Netherlands, Nannes broke into the Australian squad and ran out comfortably as the leading wicket-taker in the 2010 World T20, engineering 14 dismissals at 13.07.

Bangladesh: Shakib Al Hasan

Matches: 140,Wickets: 172,Average: 19.50,Strike rate: 17.8,Economy Rate: 6.55

Shakib Al Hasan is arguably the greatest cricketer Bangladesh has produced, and in the shortest format, the statistics back this up: He is the only player in this list to also top his nation's run-scoring charts, as per Bleacher Report's list of every nation's top run scorers.

His all-round talent has seen him picked up by sides for T20 tournaments in England, Australia, Sri Lanka and the West Indies in addition to the Bangladeshi Premier League, where he captained Dhaka Gladiators to the 2013 title.

However, it is on the biggest stage of all where he has shone most brightly, as an integral part of the Kolkata Knight Riders side that has won two of the last three Indian Premier League titles.

He can be a swashbuckling batsman late in the innings, but as his 172 wickets at a healthy average of under 20 suggest, he plays a vital role with the ball, too.

Indeed, his economy rate of 6.55 is excellent and in KKR's two IPL final victories he was their most economical bowler, outperforming the more feted Sunil Narine.

His four overs for 26 runs in this year's final was highly creditable as Kings XI Punjab racked up 199, and without his tight bowling, the target may well have been beyond reach.

England: Dimitri Mascarenhas

Matches: 130,Wickets: 152,Average: 20.61,Strike rate: 17.4,Economy Rate: 7.10

Given the congested schedule for regular England international players, it is not surprising that the highest English wicket-taker in domestic T20 cricket is not more of a household name.

Dimitri Mascarenhas has taken advantage of his lack of international recognition with England to ply his trade around the globe.

Perhaps it is fitting that the Englishman who has prospered most in foreign leagues is one born to Sri Lankan parents and raised in Australia.

Mascarenhas took to the shorter format quickly, as both a big-hitting batsman and disciplined fast-medium bowler, taking the first-ever hat-trick in T20 cricket for Hampshire against Sussex as part of his 5/14 back in 2004.

His early success ensured he was the only Englishman to play in the inaugural IPL in 2008 for eventual winners Rajasthan Royals, and he would later represent Kings XI Punjab.

In England, Mascarenhas played for and captained Hampshire with distinction for many years, and returned to Australia to add to his wickets tally in the Big Bash, representing Melbourne Stars and then Hobart Hurricanes. 

Having impressed in New Zealand's State T20 competition for Otago including their 2009 title-winning campaign, he was recently appointed their head coach where their crop of bowlers will benefit from the experience and nous that brought him more than 150 T20 wickets in leagues around the world.

India: Amit Mishra

Matches: 132,Wickets: 162,Average: 20.4,Strike rate: 17.5,Economy Rate: 6.96

Despite the Indian love affair with Twenty20 cricket, their batsman have flourished more ostentatiously than their bowlers, and leg-spinner Amit Mishra, placed 17th on the overall list, lacks the international pedigree of bowlers who have proven less effective than him in the domestic game.

While the box-office names of Suresh Raina, Rohit Sharma, Gautam Gambhir and Virat Kholi are all nestled in the top 15 run-scorers in T20 cricket, Amit Mishra has only made seven T20 international appearances for his country.

This is slightly baffling when considering his highly effective performances for Delhi Daredevils, Deccan Chargers and latterly Sunrisers Hyderabad in the Indian Premier League.

Mishra has taken more wickets than Ravi Ashwin and Harbhajan Singh in T20, both of whom have played more than 50 internationals between them, and can also boast the unique feat of taking three hat-tricks in the IPL, as reported by ESPNcricinfo.

It is in the IPL where Mishra has done the most damage, with 102 IPL scalps making him the second-highest wicket-taker in the competition's history.

New Zealand: Nathan McCullum

Matches: 138,Wickets: 124,Average: 24.15,Strike rate: 19.7,Economy Rate: 7.32

Less celebrated than his brother Brendon, who made it into Bleacher Report's list of top T20 run- corers for every nation, Nathan McCullum has still been notably effective with the ball in domestic T20 cricket.

Equal with all-rounder Scott Styris on 124 wickets, McCullum edges him out here on the basis of doing so at a better average, economy rate and strike rate, as well as reaching the milestone in 60 fewer games than his team-mate.

With both still playing along with Daniel Vettori and Tim Southee on 121 and 119 wickets respectively, the title of leading Kiwi wicket-taker could continue to change hands as time goes on.

Uncapped at Test level, McCullum has developed his bowling to suit shorter formats and is well-travelled, taking in stints in T20 tournaments in England with Lancashire and Glamorgan, in Australia's Big Bash with Sydney Sixers and in the IPL with Pune Warriors.

At home in New Zealand, he has long been a key member of the Otago Volts side that won the State T20 tournament in 2009 and 2013 and enjoyed a run through the qualifying stages of the Champions League T20, going out of the group stages on net run rate to eventual winners Mumbai Indians.

Pakistan: Azhar Mahmood

Matches: 213,Wickets: 241,Average: 23.52,Strike rate: 18.6,Economy Rate: 7.58

Pakistani veteran Azhar Mahmood is the highest wicket-taker in domestic T20 cricket never to have had a crack at international level in the shortest format, despite taking more than 100 ODI wickets for his country.

Mahmood was a relative late-comer to the IPL, having previously made his mark in a number of different countries in addition to his exploits in Pakistan.

His skilled death bowling, allied to destructive hitting, saw him make waves over a number of seasons in England including a lengthy stint with Kent sandwiched between seasons at Surrey.

A hugely successful year between 2011 and 2012 saw him claim domestic T20 titles with Auckland Aces in New Zealand and Dhaka Gladiators in Bangladesh, catching the eye of Kings XI Punjab who snapped him up at the IPL auction.

They weren't the only ones to notice, as he has also played in tournaments in South Africa, Australia, Bangladesh and the West Indies in recent years.

Despite pushing 40, he continues to justify his place in the Surrey side that has made consecutive T20 finals days over the last two years, and he could well reach 250 T20 wickets before calling it quits.

South Africa: Alfonso Thomas

Matches: 214,Wickets: 248,Average: 21.56,Strike rate: 17.4 Economy Rate: 7.41

Like many great Australian batsmen at the turn of the century, bowler Alfonso Thomas is unlucky to have coincided with his country boasting a wealth of talent in his chosen discipline.

Despite consistent performances in domestic cricket, he has only managed one T20 international, and he hardly shamed himself in taking 3/25 against Pakistan.

The absence of international commitments has enabled Thomas to forge a highly impressive domestic career, taking residence as a Kolpak player with Somerset in England and using his skills as a limited-overs bowler to tour the global T20 leagues, racking up more wickets than Dale Steyn along the way.

He enjoyed a short IPL stint with the now-defunct Pune Warriors, claiming 14 scalps in 15 games, and he has particularly enjoyed himself in the Big Bash, firstly with Adelaide Strikers and more recently with Perth Scorchers.

It was for Perth he took a career best 4/8 in 2012, as reported by his English county Somerset, and he impressed with 2/23 in the 2014 Big Bash Final to help the Scorchers secure their first title earlier this year.

At the age of 37, Thomas shows no signs of slowing down, and his experience and guile should see many more wickets tumble in the T20 format as long as he is around.

Sri Lanka: Lasith Malinga

Matches: 201,Wickets: 265,Average: 18.12,Strike rate: 16.4,Economy Rate: 6.61

One of the least surprising names on this list, Lasith Malinga has long been recognised as one of the most effective death bowlers in T20 cricket.

His international profile has helped him to secure overseas gigs in T20 tournaments in England, the West Indies, Australia and most notably India, where is a mainstay of the Mumbai Indians side.

Not only Sri Lanka's leading wicket-taker in domestic T20, he is also the world's leading wicket-taker with 265 dismissals resulting from his bowling across the many leagues where he has plied his trade.

His exploits in the IPL, where he has spearheaded the Mumbai Indians attack for each of the seven seasons, have brought him 119 wickets in 83 matches and victory in both the Champions League T20, in 2011, and the IPL itself in 2013.

Malinga's near identical figures of 2/23 in the final of the former and 2/22 in final of the latter speak volumes about his consistency and reliability, with his unique sling-shot action proving hard to score from and often hard to defend, too.

His highly destructive bowling was best evident in a 2012 Big Bash fixture, where he was largely responsible for skittling Perth Scorchers for 69 with a devastating spell of 6/7 from his four overs.

West Indies: Dwayne Bravo


Matches: 211,Wickets: 203,Average: 24.84,Strike rate: 18.6,Economy Rate: 7.99

Though Sunil Narine, four years his junior, will surely eclipse him at some point, Dwayne Bravo is currently the West Indies' leading wicket-taker in domestic T20 cricket with 203 scalps, 22 ahead of his younger international team-mate.

Though Narine has by far the superior average and economy rate, Bravo has been a highly influential player, and his wicket-taking ability, which won him the Purple Cap in 2013 as evidenced on IPLT20.com, was at the heart of Chennai Super Kings run to the 2013 IPL final.

His 32 victims included 4/42 in the final, and MS Dhoni told ESPNcricinfo before this year's Champions League that his absence in this year's IPL "affected the strength, combination and stability of the side."

As if to underline this point, he is back doing what he does best in the CLT20, taking 2/17 from four overs in with an economy rate of 4.25 when the next most economical bowler went at 8.5 per over in the victory over the Dolphins.

Bravo's decision to prioritise IPL riches over international commitments has put him at loggerheads with the West Indies Cricket Board in the past, but with more than 200 wickets in domestic T20 including stints in England and Australia, he has at least given it his all and not just picked up the cheque.