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Fastest Ball in Cricket History

Fast bowlers have always been a thrilling aspect of cricket, impacting the game in numerous ways. Their ability to deliver rapid-paced balls adds an element of excitement, keeping spectators on the edge of their seats. Fast bowlers often intimidate batsmen with their sheer speed, forcing them to react quickly and make split-second decisions and hence, fastest ball in cricket is always a topic up for discussion.

Now, let’s delve into the intriguing question: who holds the record for the fastest ball in cricket history? Take a look at the top 10.

Top 10 Fastest Balls in Cricket History

Find list of fastest ball in cricket history below:  

RankBowlerBall SpeedTeamOppositionYear
1Shoaib Akhtar161.3 km/hrPakistanEngland2003
2Shaun Tait161.1 km/hrAustraliaEngland2010
3Brett Lee161.1 km/hrAustraliaNew Zealand2005
4Jeffrey Thomson160.6 km/hrAustraliaWest Indies1975
5Mitchell Starc160.4 km/hrAustraliaNew Zealand2015
6Andy Roberts159.5 km/hrWest IndiesAustralia1975
7Fidel Edwards157.7 km/hrWest IndiesSouth Africa2003
8Mitchell Johnson156.8 km/hrAustraliaEngland2013
9Mayank Yadav156.7 km/hrLucknow Super GiantsRoyal Challengers Bengaluru2024
10Mohd. Sami156.4 km/hrPakistanZimbabwe2003

1. Shoaib Akhtar – 161.3 kmph

Shoaib Akhtar, famously known as the “Rawalpindi Express,” etched his name in cricket history with his blistering pace. During a match against England in 2003, Akhtar unleashed a thunderous delivery clocked at a staggering 161.3 kmph, setting a new record for the fastest delivery ever bowled in cricket.

Born in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, Akhtar made his international debut in 1997 and quickly gained a reputation for his express pace and aggressive bowling style. Throughout his career, he terrorized batsmen with his sheer speed, earning admiration and fear alike. Despite battling injuries, Akhtar remained a formidable force on the cricket field, leaving behind a legacy after his retirement. 

2. Shaun Tait – 161.1 kmph

Shaun Tait, the Australian fast-bowling sensation, holds the record for bowling the second fastest delivery in history of any format of cricket. During a match against England, Tait unleashed a searing delivery recorded at a breathtaking 161.1 kmph, just shy of Akhtar’s mark.

Consistently clocking speeds over 150 kmph, Tait specialized in the shorter formats of the game, recognizing the strain his fast bowling placed on his body, particularly in Test cricket. A key member of Australia’s unbeaten squad at the 2007 Cricket World Cup, Tait’s relentless pace and fiery deliveries were instrumental in his team’s success in limited-overs cricket.

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3. Brett Lee – 161.1 kmph 

Brett Lee is renowned for bowling plenty of fast deliveries and is third on the fastest ball in cricket history list. His fastest recorded delivery clocked in at 161.1 kmph in 2005 against New Zealand. During his time representing Australia, Lee achieved multiple ICC titles with the team, including the 2003 Cricket World Cup, the 2006 ICC Champions Trophy, and the 2009 ICC Champions Trophy.

He made history as the first bowler to take a hat-trick in the T20 format and also as the first Australian bowler to achieve a hat-trick at a Cricket World Cup. Lee concluded his Test career with 310 wickets and his ODl career with 380 wickets. 

4. Jeffrey Thomas – 160.6 kmph 

Jeffrey Robert Thomson, renowned as one of cricket’s fastest bowlers, displayed his incredible speed with a delivery clocked at 160.6 kmph against the West Indies in Perth back in 1975.

This delivery held the title of the fastest recorded at that time. As a key member of the Australian squad, Thomson contributed to their runner-up finish at the 1975 Cricket World Cup. Paired with fellow speedster Dennis Lillee, their partnership formed one of the most formidable duos in Test cricket history.

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5. Mitchell Starc – 160.4 kmph

Mitchell Starc, widely celebrated as one of the premier bowlers in white-ball cricket, displayed his extraordinary talent with a delivery clocked at 160.4 kmph against New Zealand in 2015, marking the fastest recorded speed in a Test match to date. Setting records in ODI cricket, Starc holds the title as the fastest bowler ever to reach 150 and 200 wickets, achieving these milestones in 77 and 102 matches respectively.

Additionally, he holds the distinction as the quickest bowler in Cricket World Cup history to claim 50 wickets, accomplishing this feat in just 19 WC matches. Starc’s talent lies not only in his remarkable pace but also in his ability to generate reverse swing.

6. Andy Roberts

Andy Roberts, a stalwart of West Indian cricket, set the bar high with a blistering pace of 159.5 kmph against Australia in 1975. Following suit,

7. Fidel Edwards

Fidel Edwards, another West Indian speedster, thundered down the pitch at 157.7 kmph in a match against South Africa in 2003.

8. Mitchell Johnson

Mitchell Johnson of Australia left his mark with a searing delivery of 156.8 kmph against England in 2013, albeit just shy of the elusive 160 kmph mark. Breaking new ground,

9. Mayank Yadav

Mayank Yadav etched his name in history as the first Indian to surpass 155 kmph twice in a single match during the IPL 2024, unleashing a rocket at 156.7 kmph while representing Lucknow Super Giants.

Further Read: Fastest 50 in T20 Cricket History

10. Mohammad Sami

Mohammad Sami of Pakistan, a pioneer of pace in the early 2000s, showcased his raw speed with a delivery clocked at 156.4 kmph against Zimbabwe in 2003. 

Fastest Ball in Cricket History is 175 kmph

Matheesha Pathirana, then 17-year-old fast bowler from Sri Lanka, stunned the cricketing world with a lightning-fast delivery clocking an astonishing 175 kmph during a match against India in the 2020 ICC U19 World Cup.

This remarkable feat led many to believe that Pathirana had set a new benchmark for speed in cricket across all formats. Facing Indian under-19 batsman Yashasvi Jaiswal, Pathirana unleashed a ferocious delivery, which registered an incredible 175 kmph on the speed gun.

However, subsequent investigations revealed a technical glitch, dispelling the notion of Pathirana’s delivery being the fastest in cricket history. The record for the fastest delivery remains firmly held by Shoaib Akhtar.



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