Former Pakistan speedster Shoaib Akhtar holds the record of bowling the fastest delivery in the history of the game. Akhtar bowled a delivery at a speed of 161.3 kmph in a game against England during the 2003 50-Over World Cup. This record is still intact, although Mitchell Starc came very close to breaking the feat.
In a Test match against New Zealand, Starc clocked a speed of 160 kmph, faced by former NZ player Ross Taylor. Apart from the Aussie, no player has come close to breaking this record. However, the emergence of Umran Malik has given hopes to the fans and cricket fraternity that the record might get broken in the future. Malik recently clocked 157 kmph per hour in the Indian T20 League while playing for Hyderabad.
Meanwhile, Shoaib Akhtar has said that he wants to see Malik have a long career and hopefully break the world record of the fastest delivery ever bowled. The former speedster also advised Malik to stay away from injuries during his career. “I want to see him have a long career. A few days ago, someone was congratulating me as it’s been 20 years since I bowled the fastest delivery but no one has been able to break the record. But I said, ‘There must be someone who can smash this record’. I will be happy if Umran breaks my record. But he needs to ensure that he doesn’t get injured in the process. I want to see him playing for a long stretch without any injuries,” Akhtar said during an interaction on Sportskeeda.
“I want to see him on the world stage as he belongs there. At present, there are not many people who can cross the 150 kmph mark. We have seen that Umran has been bowling consistently at that pace. I want Umran to that 100-mph mark at the back of his mind. I will be happy if he enters the 100-mph club. But he has to stay away from injuries which can halt his career,” he added.
Umran has been a find of the tournament and if reports are to be believed, he may be selected in the Indian team for the South Africa series.