Bradman considered me as the fastest bowler: Former Pakistan pacer

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The record for the fastest ball bowled by a cricketer is held by former Pakistan quick Shoaib Akhtar. Akhtar fired in a ball bowled at 161.3 kph (100.2 mph) at England batsman Nick Knight during the 2003 World Cup, which till date is the quickest ball recorded. However, if former Pakistan fast bowler Farooq Hamid is to be believed, the record for the fastest ball bowled should belong to him.

Hamid played only one Test for Pakistan, in 1964 against Australia, where he bowled to the great Don Bradman. In that Test, Hamid claims he became the first bowler to clock 100-miles an hour, touching the 110-115 m/h mark and floored some of the best batsmen of that generation, including the great Rohan Kanhai.

“Many international cricket personalities such as great Sir Don Bradman besides or [our] own Imtiaz Ahmed, Zaheer Abbas and others considered me as the fastest bowler, even faster than Charlie Griffith of the West Indies,” Hamid said in an interview with Dawn.

“On that tour [playing for the Commonwealth XI in Pakistan], great batsman Rohan Kanhai was floored by my lethal bouncer. Later, the commentators said that I was much quicker than Griffith. I must have been bowling at around 110-115 miles per hour I think.”

Hamid went on to reveal how he would have gone to play a lot more cricket for Pakistan but was forced out of cricket at the age of 25. “When I took seven wickets for 16 runs against Wellington in a match (on a New Zealand tour), they were dismissed for 53 runs in just ten overs,” he said.

“However, everyone was surprised to see that I was not in the Pakistan team for the Test match that was played at the same venue after a couple of days. And neither was I included for the other two Tests played against New Zealand in that series.

“In 1963 when I was part of the Pakistan Eaglets team touring England, I had taken five wickets in three overs but my captain Wazir Mohammad did not give me the ball for further bowling against Lancashire at the old Trafford ground,” Farooq said. “Later, Secretary MCC Mr Howard told my manager that, ‘today Farooq bowled a yard quicker than Trueman at his best.’

“This and much more of the same treatment disheartened and demoralised me so much that I decided to quit cricket at the young age of just 25. Yes, the same politics is going on and harming our cricket.”

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