Former left-arm pacer Wasim Akram has bowled a number of memorable spells, however one in specific he received’t keep in mind fondly is in opposition to Viv Richards of the as soon as-mighty West Indies. Akram, throughout a video chat, revealed how bowling nicely to Richards pumped him as much as an extent that he minced a few phrases to the batsman, which didn’t go down too nicely with Richards.
The incident came about throughout the third Test of Pakistan’s tour of the West Indies in 1987-88, and even in spite of everything these years, Akram considers himself fortunate to have narrowly escaped the wrath of Richards.
“He would have hit me a lot in 1988. He was a muscular guy and I was very skinny. It was the last over of the match and I was bowling at a good pace. I had realised by then that I have become fast. Viv Richards realised I was a difficult bowler and thought I have a quick-arm action. I bowled a bouncer at him and his cap fell down. Someone like Viv Richards dropping his cap was a big deal,” Akram informed Aakash Chopra.
“There used to be no match referee back then and I went up to him and sledged in him in my broken English. He spat after staring at me and said ‘don’t do this man’. I understood nothing but just the man word. I said ‘ok, no worries’ and went to my captain Imran Khan and told him that Richards is asking me not to abuse him , or else he’ll beat me up. Imran told me not to worry and bowl him bouncers. I bowled him a bouncer and abused him after he ducked. On the last ball of the day I bowled an in-swinger and he was bowled. I even went up to him and gave him a good send off, shouting things like ‘go back and all’”.
And that’s what led Akram to virtually draw the wrath of Richards. After going again to their respective dressing room at the finish of the day’s play, as a drained Akram was taking off his sneakers, he was requested by a man firmly to return out. As it turned out, Richards was ready to present Akram a piece of his thoughts, however the left-armer was fast to apologise and Richards opted to forgive him.
“When I went out I saw Viv Richards standing without his shirt. He was sweating and having his bat in his hand, he also had his pads on. I got scared and ran back to Imran Khan. I told him that Viv Richards was waiting for me with a bat in his hand. Imran Khan told ‘what should I do. It’s your fight, go and handle it’. I went out and told him sorry. I told him that nothing of this sort will happen again and he said you better not, I will kill you. My street smartness worked for me then,” Akram stated.