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Shoaib Akhtar was the fastest bowler I have ever faced: Michael Clarke

By Bet Barter

May 25, 2021

Former Australian batsman Michael Clarke claimed that Pakistani pacer Shoaib Akhtar was the fastest bowler he has faced in his cricketing career. Michael Clarke is acknowledged as one the greatest batsman to have played the game. The Aussie batsman made his international debut against India. He immediately proved his worth as he scored a century on his debut. As a result, he was handed over the captaincy reins of the Australian team in the late 2000s. Michael Clarke also went on to lead his country to the World Cup title in 2015 before retiring.

During Clarke’s playing career, there was a massive debate on who is the fastest bowler in the world. Several players like Brett Lee, Shaun Tait, and Shoaib Akhtar regularly touched speeds of over 150 kmph and were considered as the fastest bowlers back then. These fast bowlers were a nightmare for any team as they would generate some serious pace. So, Michael Clarke picked Shoaib Akhtar, who he feels was the fastest among all.

Shoaib Akhtar was determined with his pace and also had variations in his bowling

Akhtar’s bowling action and run-up were often discussed among the cricketing fraternity for quite a long time. The pacer was determined with his pace and also had variations such as yorker, bouncer, deceptive slower ball. Be it in Tests or ODIs, Akhtar was the star bowler for Pakistan’s captain whenever the team required wickets. Recently, Sachin Tendulkar also spoke about Shoaib Akhtar and how he had broken his ribcage during the match. The injury back then ruled the Tendulkar out for two to three months. Akhtar concluded his cricketing career with 444 wickets across formats. 

Talking about Michael Clarke, the former Australian batsman had a brilliant career after a debut hundred against India in Tests. Clarke retired from all formats of the game after leading Australia to the World Cup title in 2015. Michael Clarke recently talked about how he fought with the management to keep Ricky Ponting in the team after Clarke took over the captaincy of Australia. Clarke also pointed out that Ricky Ponting was good enough to play as a batsman and was almost a coach-like figure in the dressing room.

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