Home / Indian Batsmen that Terrified Pakistan Fast Bowler Shoaib Akhtar
The cricket pitch from end to end is about 22 meters long. This may seem like a fair enough distance when you are facing spinners or even medium pacers but can you imagine facing the likes of Brett Lee or Shoaib Akhtar. These fast bowlers threw deadly rockets towards the batsmen and have managed to rattle quite a few players in their career.
Shoaib Akhtar in particular is infamous for his lethal bouncers that shaken up several batsmen including Brian Lara, Gary Kirsten and our very Dada! As per Akhtar, even Tendulkar was afraid to face him…a claim we would like to politely acknowledge as not being true 🙂
If you guessed Mohammad Azharuddin and VVS Laxma, two cricketers with sublime timing and handy wristwork then you are sadly wrong. If you had guessed Veeru smacking Akhtar around or even Captain Cool MS Dhoni playing his deliveries with ease then the answer would be incorrect as well. As per the Pakistani fast bowler, the batsman that gave him the most trouble was none other than Rahul ‘the Wall’ Dravid.
However in a recent interview with Aakash Chopra, Akhtar had the following to say about Dravid “If a batsman used to play, like Rahul Dravid, we would bowl him length balls. From close to the stump we would aim at the gap between bat and pad, try to hit the ball on the pad,”
The fast bowler even went onto recall plan that Shahid Afridi had concocted to get Dravid out. The match in question was the final of the Pepsi Cup in 1999 where Pakistan met India in the final. Pakistan had posted a formidable total and India were required to score 293 to win the tri-nation tournament.
“There was a final match in Bangalore, I had dismissed Sadagoppan Ramesh early, we took 3-4 wickets early. Sachin Tendulkar was not playing. Shahid Afridi and I said Rahul Dravid will take a lot of time and it’s Friday night today. Afridi said bowl something and take his wicket else he will play for long,” Akhtar recalled.
“I hit him directly on the pad and urged the umpire to raise his fingers. I even said it’s our Friday night. He did not give the decision in our favour but we had won in the end. Dravid was a difficult and determined batsman. It was difficult for me as well as him. He would play against me easily.”