Nortje was unaware of bowling the fastest ball in IPL

Anrich Nortje
Anrich Nortje in action against Rajasthan Royals. Photo: Twitter/IPL
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Dubai: South African speedster Anrich Nortje, who set the Indian Premier League (IPL) ablaze by bowling the fastest delivery in the tournament's history, says he was unaware of the feat until after the end of the match.

The 26-year-old pacer clocked a breathtaking 156.2 kmph while bowling to Jos Buttler in the third over of Rajasthan Royals' run chase against Delhi Capitals on Wednesday. He bettered compatriot Dale Steyn's (154.4 kmph) record in the process.

"I heard about it afterwards. I did not know about it at the time," Anrich told his Capitals teammate Shikhar Dhawan in a video posted by IPLT20.com.

Nortje added that he has been working hard on injecting pace in his deliveries.

"I have been working really hard to get my pace up, been a couple of seasons. Been working on my braced leg and my front arm... simple stuff. Happy to get some pace behind it but you obviously need to get it in the right area, that's the most important thing."

Bowling the fastest delivery did not have the desired result for Nortje as Buttler scooped it for a boundary. The Englishman had played the same shot in the previous delivery.

However, the duel didn't last long as the South African claimed Buttler's wicket with a 155 kmph thunderbolt, the second fastest ball in IPL history.

"Yeah, the battle against Buttler was interesting. I know he plays the scoop shots, but when he played the first one, it took me by surprise," Nortje said.

"I did not think he would do it again, but he played the shot once again on the next delivery. He played really well, but I stuck to my strength, obviously we saw how the wicket was playing so I was trying to use the wicket and get some variation," Nortje added.

He made his IPL debut after Delhi Capitals roped him as a replacement for all-rounder Chris Woakes ahead of the start of the season.

He has been breathtakingly quick, clocking the five fastest deliveries in the ongoing IPL.

Kagiso Rabada, who bowls in tandem with Nortje in DC, was delighted for his compatriot, adding that they are learning from each other.

"It looks like that every game. Really happy for him but not happy for the batter," Rabada said of Nortje's record.

"When we play we only think about the delivery and not about the speed gun. We learn a lot from each other. He is a real fast bowler and I can learn some technical stuff from him.

"I have some experience which I can tell him about. It is good to chat," Rabada said.

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