The South African cricket team has always been renowned for producing an elite class of fast bowlers namely, Allan Donald, Shaun Pollock, Dale Steyn and Makhaya Ntini.
Ntini went on to play over 100 Tests, 173 ODIs and 10 T20I with his outward unorthodox action. The fast bowler went on to clinch as many as 390 wickets with the red ball and 272 with the white-ball.
However, the fast bowler perhaps didn’t receive a greater cheer for any of his wickets in comparison to when he took a single to the third man, during the historic 434-game in Johannesburg against Australia in 2006.
Ntini joined Mark Boucher as the last men standing in the final over, chasing the highest total ever in the history of ODI cricket.
Ntini, keeping his calm, took the single and returned the strike to Boucher, who hit the winning runs in the match. Now, the ex-Protea bowler has named Brian Lara as the toughest batsman he bowled to in his career.
“Facing Australia in Australia and India in India has always been tough. But when it comes to bowling at the toughest batsman, Lara was just too much,” Ntini told Pommie Mbangwa on Instagram Live Chat on Friday.
“He was one of those guys whom you just couldn’t wake up and bowl to. You needed to do your homework 110 per cent,” he added.
Lara and Ntini’s duel was one of the fascinating ones during the by-gone era, whenever the West Indies clashed against South Africa.
In fact, in 10 Test matches, Ntini went on to pick 52 wickets at an exceptional average of 23. Further, Ntini reminisced his sensational spell to Lara during the Trinidad test match in 2001.
Ntini tagged his spell at Port of Spain as his best international spell in his glittering career. The Cape-Towner called it quits from the highest level in 2011.
“My best has to be against the West Indies in Trinidad and Tobago at Lara’s home. I took his wicket twice in the same game. I was over the moon… it was that special,” Ntini concluded.