Shoaib Akhtar was one of the most intimidating fast bowlers of his time.© AFP
Former Pakistan pacer Shoaib Akhtar was one of the most intimidating fast bowlers of his time. Known as the “Rawalpindi Express”, Akhtar terrorised opposition batters with his sheer express pace for nearly two decades. Even after his retirement, several players, including Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag, admitted that Akhtar was by far the most difficult bowler to tackle. In a recent interaction, Akhtar revealed how he threatened former New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum for charging down the track on his bowling.
“Once McCullum walked down the pitch against me. I went to him and asked him ‘Hey, you got a good eyesight?’ He said ‘Yes I have, why?’ I said, ‘ Do I look like a Shoaib Malik to you?’ (laughs). ‘You can’t walk down to me. I’ll throw a beamer at you; I’ll kill you. If not here then definitely at the hotel. I’ll definitely kill you.’ (laughs),” Akhtar said on ‘Wake up with Sorabh’ YouTube channel.
Akhtar’s career was unfortunately cut short by recurring knee injuries, but the legendary fast bowler said he always gave his 100 percent on the cricket field, and labelled himself as a gladiator.
“I could’ve become the greatest fast bowler in the history of the game, but my knees did not support me. My physical fitness was such that I was in agony. I had to go through 12 operations on my knee including a knee replacement last year, and I am still struggling. But I always believed in running in hard and putting up a good show, just like a modern day gladiator. I always believed that people need to remember who I was,” he added.
After drawing curtains on his illustrious international career, Akhtar started a YouTube channel, where he gives reviews on International and league matches and Pakistani cricket.
Topics mentioned in this article