Cricket’s Twenty20 format offers batters the license to go berserk and often, that freedom leads to some astonishing knocks. The ICC Men’s T20 World Cup, the premier tournament of the shortest format, too, has seen its fair share of such breezy innings.

Former India all-rounder Yuvraj Singh holds the record for scoring the fastest fifty in T20 World Cup history.

In the famous India vs England encounter of the 2007 T20 World Cup, Yuvraj Singh smashed a half-century in just 12 balls en route to his 16-ball 58. His knock memorably included six sixes in an over off Stuart Broad following an altercation with Andrew Flintoff.

To this date, it remains the fastest fifty in the shortest format of the game.

Yuvraj Singh’s fiery innings helped eventual champions India post a daunting total of 218/4, which the bowlers successfully defended to help their team win by 18 runs. 

The World Twenty20 2022 saw Australian all-rounder Marcus Stonis play a blinder of an innings against Sri Lanka in the super 12 stage. 

The 33-year-old slammed an unbeaten 59 off 18 balls after reaching the half-century with a six off the 17th ball of his innings, which helped Australia chase down a target of 158 with more than three overs to spare. Played at a huge strike rate of 327.78, the knock comprised four fours and six maximums. 

A similar innings was also played by former Netherlands batsman Stephan Myburgh in the 2014 edition to etch his name on the illustrious list.

Chasing a target of 190, the opening batter came out with an attacking intent to slam a half-century off 17 balls, before departing for a well-made 63 off 23 balls.

His innings, coupled with other batters’ contributions, helped the Dutch team breach the challenging total in just 14 overs. 

All-rounder Glenn Maxwell is another Australian on the list of players with the fastest fifty in T20 World Cup, having achieved the feat in 2014.

Batting first, Pakistan posted a massive total of 191/5 thanks to Umar Akmal’s 54-ball 94. Looking to hunt down 192 runs, opener Aaron Finch and all-rounder Glenn Maxwell got to their respective half-centuries, with the latter reaching the mark in just 18 balls. However, their heroic efforts went in vain as Pakistan won the clash by 16 runs.

Team India batter KL Rahul and former Pakistan all-rounder Shoaib Malik complete the list of fastest fifty in T20 World Cup

Both the cricketers smashed their fifties in the marquee event back in 2021 against the same opponent - Scotland. 

While KL Rahul scored an 18-ball 50 before getting dismissed off the next ball in the Super 12 fixture, Shoaib Malik scored 54* off 18 balls at a strike rate of 300. Both the knocks steered their respective teams to victory. Know the players with fastest fifty in T20 World Cup history.

Fastest fifty in T20 World Cup

Player Team Balls taken to reach fifty Final score Opponents  Year
Yuvraj Singh India 12 58 (16) England 2007
Stephan Myburgh Netherlands 17 63 (23) Ireland 2014
Marcus Stoinis Australia 17 59* (18) Sri Lanka 2022
Glenn Maxwell Australia 18 74 (33) Pakistan  2014
Shoaib Malik Pakistan 18 54* (18) Scotland  2021
KL Rahul India 18 50 (19) Scotland  2021
Mohammad Ashraful Bangladesh 20 61 (27) West Indies 2007
Yuvraj Singh India 20 70 (30) Australia 2007
Shadab Khan Pakistan 20 55 (22) South Africa 2022
Mahela Jayawardene Sri Lanka 21 65 (27) Kenya 2007

Photo credit: Indranil MUKHERJEE / AFP