‘Woh Mujhe Maarta Tha’, Shoaib Akhtar Names The Toughest Cricketer To Get Out

Former Pakistani legendary speedster Shoaib Akhtar said is knows for his talks and remembering the past incidents from the cricket ground. Akhtar in his playing days used to be a nightmare for many batters. Meanwhile, the former bowler has named a cricketer whom he found very tough to bowl and get out.

Akhtar said that former Indian speedster Lakshmipathy Balaji used to give him sleepless nights. The match between India and Pakistan during the 2004 tour of Men in blue to the neighbouring country still holds its name in one of the most special games in history.

The 5-match ODI series was tied at 2-2 before the crucial match took place at Lahore’s Gaddafi Stadium. In that match, Balaji played a pivotal role and contributed 10 runs not out from just 6 deliveries. In this short innings, Balaji smashed a powerful six over mid-wicket off the bowling of Shoaib Akhtar.

While having a conversation with the stand-up comedian Sorabh Pant, Akhtar shared some good memories on his podcast ‘Wake Up with Sorabh.’

“I remember that my toughest opponent. I used to feel threatened by this batsman SV Balaji. No not him, another Balaji, he was a bowler …. Lakshmipathy Balaji,” Akhtar told Sorabh Pant.

“Wo mujhe maarta tha yaar aakhir me aa kar (He used to beat me). He used to hate me like anything. I was all over the place and I could not get him out,” Akhtar recalled.

During the 2004 tour of Pakistan, India emerged victorious in both the Test and ODI series under the captaincy of Sourav Ganguly. Balaji had an exceptional tour. He scored 45 runs where 35 runs came from boundaries. He also took 6 wickets with an economy rate of less than 6 runs per over. In the Test series, he was the joint-second highest wicket-taker along with Irfan Pathan.

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