Fast bowling is an art that not many can master. Only a few fast bowlers have the ability to persist for longer periods of time in their playing career. Bowling fast is one of the toughest jobs in cricket given the load that it takes on an individual’s body. While the world has seen some of the greatest fast bowlers of all-time, here’s a look at the top 10 fastest deliveries ever bowled in cricket.
Here is the list of 10 fastest deliveries ever bowled in international cricket:
1. Shoaib Akhtar, Pakistan — 161.3kmph
Pakistani speedster, Shoaib Akhtar delivered the fastest delivery ever bowled in world cricket during the ICC CWC 2003. Akhtar breached the 100mph bracket to clock 161.3kmph against England at Newlands in Capetown. Known for his speed and fierce fast bowler’s attitude, Akhtar has taken some of the world’s best batsman with his speed and accuracy.
2. Shaun Tait, Australia — 161.1kmph
Australian quick Shaun Tait also crossed the 100mph when he delivered his fastest ball against England at Lord’s in 2010. However, due to a career marred with injuries, Tait could not prolong his career and faded away soon despite his furious pace.
3. Brett Lee, Australia — 161.1kmph
One of the quickest bowlers of all-time, Brett Lee with at times unplayable with the ball coming at his menacing pace. Lee hit over 160kmph twice in an over against New Zealand in Napier in 2005. including his fastest delivery bowled at 161.1kmph. In a Test match against West Indies, one of his delivery read as 161.8kmph but Channel 9, later conceded it as a mistake from their end.
4. Jeff Thomson, Australia — 160.6kmph
Former Australian pace bowler, Jeff Thomson was one of the quickest pacers of his time. He delivered a thunderbolt during in 1975 during a fast bowling study at WACA ground in Perth, However, many times, Thomson felt that he must have clocked anywhere around 180kmph on quite a few occasions during his career.
5. Andy Roberts, West Indies – 159.5kmph
Being a formidable part of the greatest West Indian fast bowling quartet, Andy Roberts is believed to have bowled at nearly 160kmph on most occasions in his career. However, his fastest delivery was recorded at 159.5kmph against Australia in 1975 at WACA in Perth.
6. Fidel Edwards, West Indies — 157.7kmph
Former West Indian, Fidel Edwards was famous for his slingshot action. He bowled his fastest delivery against South Africa at Wanderers in 2003. Ever since his retirement, West Indian has failed to unearth a talent like him who could bowl with a consistent pace in all formats.
7. Mitchell Johnson, Australia — 156.8kmph
One of the devastating bowlers in recent times, Mitchell Johnson had the capability to sent shivers down the batting line-ups of most international teams. During his dream run in the 2013/14 home Ashes, Johnson was on fire in terrorizing English batters with his pace. In the Boxing Day Test vs England, Johnson bowled his fastest ever delivery in cricket recorded at 156.8kmph.
8. Mohammad Sami, Pakistan — 156.4kmph
Mohammad Sami was one of the many fast bowling young sensations produced by Pakistan. However, due to several reasons, Sami couldn’t sustain for a long enough at the international stage. However, until he did, he bowled his fastest delivery against Zimbabwe at Sharjah at 2003. The delivery was bowled at 156.4kmph.
9. Shane Bond, New Zealand – 156.4kmph
One of the most inspiring names of New Zealand cricket, Shane Bond’s smooth action was one of the beautiful sights in cricket. He was fast, quick and accurate to hit the stumps on most occasions. He bowled the fastest ever delivery for New Zealand recorded at 156.4kmph against India at Centurion in 2003.
10. Dale Steyn, South Africa – 156.2kmph
Arguably one of the best of his time, Dale Steyn reigned supreme among the fast bowlers for the majority of his career. In no doubt, he’s been the most recent fastest bowler the world has seen. He was a nightmare for batsmen given his ability to bowl quick and swing it both ways at such a speed. He bowled his fastest ever delivery in the IPL against Kolkata Knight Riders at a speed of 156.2kmph during the 2010 edition.