"I will kill you next time!" Wasim Akram recalls the time when Viv Richards almost beat him

The incident happened back in 1988 when Akram was only 22.

Wasim Akram | GETTY

Former Pakistan pacer Wasim Akram nearly got himself beaten up by former West Indies captain Viv Richards. The Caribbean attacking batsman was sledged by Akram during a match and he was asked to stop by Richards, but the Pakistan pacer didn't listen.

It was an on-field face-off between Akram and Richards during the Barbados Test in 1988. Two of the best in the business came against each other and the fierce battle got heated up after Wasim's sledging escalated. In the end, Richards was bowled by Akram and he also gave him a send-off, rubbing salt in his raw wound.

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Later, Wasim had to face consequences for not keeping his mouth shut even after the West Indies ruthless batter warned him. 

The ex-Pakistan speedster talked about the incident with Aakash Chopra on social media. "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 realized by then that I have become fast. Viv Richards realized I was a difficult bowler and thought I have a quick-arm action. I bowled a bouncer at him and his cap fell down. Falling of Viv Richards cap was a big deal."

"There used to 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's word. I said ok no worries and went to my captain Imran Khan and said that Richards was saying not to abuse him else he will beat me up. Imran Khan said that don't worry about that and bowl him, bouncers. I bowled him a bouncer again and abused him after he ducked. On the last ball of the day, I bowled an in-swinger and he was bowled. I went up to him and gave him a good send-off, shouted go back and all," Akram added.

The then 22-year-old asked for help from his captain, but Imran Khan refused. "I went back to the dressing room with Imran Khan. In Barbados, the dressing of two teams is in front of each other. I was tired and taking off my shoes when a guy told me to come out of the dressing. I asked 'who is calling me' and he said you better come out man. 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 said skipper what are you saying, you have developed this good body and telling a skinny guy like me and face him. 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," Wasim concluded.


By - 11 May, 2020

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