SHANE WARNE (AUS)
357 wickets in 65 Tests with best of 7/94 at an average of 25.17
No World Test XI is complete without the great Shane Warne. Warne had made quite an unimpressive debut in Tests in 1992 against India as he was smashed all over the park by Ravi Shastri who made a double century and Sachin Tendulkar, who made a century in Sydney.
However, he turned the world on its head when he bowled the ball of the century on his Ashes debut in 1993, and despite playing just till 2007, he made quite an impact from 2000 -2007. He picked 357 wickets in 65 Tests during the period and became the first bowler to 700 Test wickets as well.
DALE STEYN (SA)
439 wickets in 93 Tests with best of 7/51 at an average of 22.95
Dale Steyn was an amazing fast bowler with a beautiful bowling action who captured the imagination of the cricket world. Steyn made an impactful debut against England in 2004 and went onto play 93 Tests picking 439 wickets.
However, what made him great was his ability to pick wickets everywhere in the world. He was particularly impressive in India and the Indian subcontinent with his best bowling of 7/51 helping South Africa blow away India in the Nagpur Test of the 2010 Test series.
MUTTIAH MURALITHARAN (SL)
573 wickets in 85 Tests with best of 9/51 at an average of 21.01
Muttiah Muralitharan of Sri Lanka was the first bowler to 800 Test wickets, a feat he achieved in the final Test match of his career. Though he made his Test debut in 1992, Muralitharan picked more than 550 wickets from 2000 to his retirement in 2010, while picking the best bowling of 9/51.
He also shouldered the bowling attack of the island nation along with Chaminda Vaas and basically bowled from one end, non-stop. His best bowling figures in this period- 9/51 came against Zimbabwe in the 2002 Kandy Test match. He is the only bowler with more than one 9-wicket haul in a Test inning.
GLENN MCGRATH (AUS)
297 wickets in 66 Tests with best of 8/24 at an average of 20.53
Glenn McGrath has made his debut in 1993 and had established himself as the leading strike bowler of Australia in 1996 when Craig McDermott’s fitness issues caused him to retire. McGrath picked wickets everywhere he went including the Indian subcontinent and hence is considered to be an all-time great.
From the period of 2000 to his retirement in 2007 in Tests, he picked 297 wickets in 66 matches at an astonishing average of 20.53 and he also took a Test hat-trick against West Indies which included Brian Lara as one of the wickets, while completing his 300 wickets in Tests.
World Test XI of 21st century:
Graeme Smith (SA), Virender Sehwag (IND), Ricky Ponting (C-AUS), Steve Smith (AUS), Kumar Sangakkara (SL), Jacques Kallis (SA), Adam Gilchrist (WK-AUS), Shane Warne (AUS), Dale Steyn (SA), Muttiah Muralitharan (SL), Glenn McGrath (AUS)