5 fastest deliveries in cricket history

Sri Lanka’s under-19 pacer Matheesha Pathirana made headlines when one of his deliveries against India in the under-19 World Cup was shown to be as fast as 175 kmph on the speedometer. And with ICC not making any official statement on the same, it’s now apparent that it was just a technical glitch that the number 175 came up on the scoreboard.

But with that in mind, we take a look at five fastest deliveries in the sport of cricket.

#5 Mitchell Starc – 160.4 kph

The Australian speedster clocked 160.4 kph in a Test match against neighbours New Zealand. The match was being played at the WACA in November 2015 when Starc entered the top five fastest bowlers in the history of the sport.

The pacer was on fire on the day and bowled multiple deliveries in the high 150s to rattle the Kiwi batting line up. Starc is still going strong in the sport but isn’t likely to touch the 160 kph mark again.

#4 Jeff Thomson – 160.6 kph

Another Australian fast bowler in the list, the legendary Jeff Thomson broke the 160 kph barrier back in 1975 when he sent down a 160.6 kph thunderbolt vs West Indies. The match was being played in Perth itself, where Starc reached the 160.4 kph mark as well.

He is considered by many as the fastest bowler to have played the sport. However, the lack of technological means to accurately measure speed during his playing days meant the speed of most of his deliveries went undetected.

#3 Shaun Tait – 161.1 kph

Yet another Australian on the list and till not the last one, Shaun Tait is one of fastest bowlers the world has ever seen. Though his career was badly affected by recurring injuries, that didn’t stop him from clocking some of the fastest speeds ever recorded in a cricket match.

Back in 2010, Tait clocked 161.1 kph in an ODI encounter vs England. His career, however, couldn’t reach the level he’d have hoped for.

#2 Brett Lee – 161.1 kph

One of the greatest bowlers to have ever played the game, Brett Lee was a menace for the batsmen during his playing days. Lee was as accurate as he was fast, a deadly combination for any batsman in the world.

The Australian clocked 161.1 kph as well, back in 2005 against New Zealand, which made him the joint second-fastest bowler in the history of the sport. Only one bowler has been faster than Lee in cricket and he is none other than…

#1 Shoaib Akhtar – 161.3 kph

Fondly known as the Rawalpindi Express, Shoaib Akhtar has bowled the fastest delivery in cricket’s history. The Pakistani great was once the most feared bowler in the world, consistently clocking speeds in high 150s.

Akhtar managed to clock 161.3 kph during a 2003 ICC World Cup encounter vs England. No other bowler has managed to overtake him in the list of fastest bowlers even after 17 years.

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