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The Greatest Fast Bowlers

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Stella
Pal Joey
Raymond
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gboycottnut
Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler
Punter's Dodgy Digit
sugarrayb
Mike Selig
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Post by Guest Sat 9 Apr 2011 - 11:57

There is no better sight in cricket than a fast bowler steaming in before destroying a batsman's stumps or knocking him over with a bouncer.
Out of these top 10 who gets your vote as the greatest fast bowler?

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Post by Corporalhumblebucket Sat 9 Apr 2011 - 12:18

Impossible choice - do you want explosive power or relentless pressure - but I've gone for Holding.

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Post by Guest Sat 9 Apr 2011 - 12:23

Thats the difficulty, but it opens up the debate on what people prefer from a fast bowler.
I went for McGrath because of his relentless accuracy.

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Post by Guest Sat 9 Apr 2011 - 15:53

mc grath the greatest quick off all time

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Post by english warrior Sun 7 Aug 2011 - 16:53

A very hard decision to make, but for sheer fire, aggresion, skill, determination and never say die spirit it has to be Dennis Lillie for me. I first saw this man on the Aussie tour of England in 1972 and remember how fearsome and powerful his bowling was, with the result that only one English batsman made a 100 during that series, and as he got older he may have slowed down, but technically he gained more than he lost.
Fearsome, fast, and not someone to be faced with any comfort in his prime.

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Post by ShankyCricket Sun 7 Aug 2011 - 17:00

Malcolm Marshall


the guy was absolutely perfect.

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Post by Gregers Sun 7 Aug 2011 - 17:26

Would have voted for Waqar Younis so went for Wasim Akram

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Post by Hoggy_Bear Sun 7 Aug 2011 - 17:34

Marshall for me.
Best I've ever seen.

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Post by dummy_half Mon 8 Aug 2011 - 8:51

This is always an interesting question, because unlike batting (Bradman) and spin bowling (Murali or Warne), there isn't a clear gap between the best one or two and the rest. Also, it's a good question as to whether we are talking about the best genuinely fast bowler or the best seam bowler.

As far as the best seam bowler, for relentless accuracy and efficiency, McGrath stands out, although Hadlee was also a magnificent swing and seam bowler, and both Lillee and Truman (a terrible oversight from the original list) became great fast medium bowlers as they lost the edge of express pace.

Genuine fast bowlers: Statistically, Malcolm Marshall takes it, but for me Holding was a better bowler to watch.

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Post by Fists of Fury Mon 8 Aug 2011 - 8:53

McGrath for me, incredible accuracy.

However, I do love the express pace of some of the above, which is certainly more exciting.

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Post by legendkillar Mon 8 Aug 2011 - 9:34

I have gone for Michael Holding. Anyone with a nickname like Whispering Death tells you all you need to know about the guy. Who can forget the over in 1981 against Boycott I think, when each delivery increased in pace.

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Post by Smile Mon 8 Aug 2011 - 9:42

Malcolm Marshall and Richard Hadlee from the 1980's were the best around.
Glenn McGrath and Curtly Ambrose from the 1990's.
Dale Steyn is the only bowler who is fit to lace the boots from the mentioned names and Kapil Dev should not even be considered when writing about the great fast bowlers.

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Post by Mike Selig Thu 11 Aug 2011 - 14:47

Think Ambrose was better than Walsh personally (although Walsh's longevity was astounding). No idea why Kapil Dev is there, there are at least a dozen better fast bowlers than him not on the list.

For me Wasim Akram, as he did things with the ball which I thought were impossible. Close 2nd goes to Michael Holding.

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Post by sugarrayb Thu 11 Aug 2011 - 15:56

In the 70's and 80's the Windies were big and tall, meanand fast, except for one!

Malcolm Marshall he was reasonably short but was an absolute gem, fast accurate, movement, agression, you name it he had it!

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Post by Punter's Dodgy Digit Thu 11 Aug 2011 - 19:46

Smile wrote: Kapil Dev should not even be considered when writing about the great fast bowlers.
Kapil Dev was the only seamer India had and was truly world class. Playing in India and an average below 30, fantastic achievement.

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Post by Smile Thu 11 Aug 2011 - 22:55

Punter's Dodgy Digit wrote:
Smile wrote: Kapil Dev should not even be considered when writing about the great fast bowlers.
Kapil Dev was the only seamer India had and was truly world class. Playing in India and an average below 30, fantastic achievement.

There are at least twenty fast bowlers from his era to now who are better. Dev was a good allrounder but not a great fast bowler.

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Post by Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler Thu 11 Aug 2011 - 23:07

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MjoGpmqrJMk

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Post by gboycottnut Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 1:13

What about Mitchell Johnson as the greatest fast bowler?

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Post by Liam_Main Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 12:24

gboycottnut wrote:What about Mitchell Johnson as the greatest fast bowler?

Your joking, right?
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Post by Smile Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 12:38

Liam_Main wrote:
gboycottnut wrote:What about Mitchell Johnson as the greatest fast bowler?

Your joking, right?

Of course he is.

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Post by Raymond Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 12:40

I dont think the great west Indians were quicker than the fast bowlers today my dad who watched a lot of the them in the 70's says that they were all high 80's and could get into the 90's on a good day. He said Lee and Steyn are faster than all of them. (i wasn't around in the 70's so i'm just going on what others have said) But why isn't Steyn in that list I would have him above all the names in that list. For the list i choose glenn mcgrath

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Post by Smile Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 12:46

Marshall, Holding, Croft and Clarke were all 90mph plus.

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Post by Pal Joey Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 12:47

Malcolm Marshall, followed by McGrath, Akram and Hadlee. I was lucky enough to see them all bowl in their prime on many occasions.

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Post by Raymond Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 12:48

Smile wrote:Marshall, Holding, Croft and Clarke were all 90mph plus.

I'm not saying that they couldn't bowl 90 just that i doubt they did it every spell. Holding said him self that Lee is faster than he was.

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Post by Smile Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 12:50

Raymond wrote:
Smile wrote:Marshall, Holding, Croft and Clarke were all 90mph plus.

I'm not saying that they couldn't bowl 90 just that i doubt they did it every spell. Holding said him self that Lee is faster than he was.

Lee WAS near to 100mph.

I would have though that those names I mentioned bowled early 90's most of the time.

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Post by Raymond Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 13:01

Smile wrote:
Raymond wrote:
Smile wrote:Marshall, Holding, Croft and Clarke were all 90mph plus.

I'm not saying that they couldn't bowl 90 just that i doubt they did it every spell. Holding said him self that Lee is faster than he was.

Lee WAS near to 100mph.

I would have though that those names I mentioned bowled early 90's most of the time.

I doubt it there bodies would have broke down very quickly even with the less cricket been played. I think they would of got most of there wickets bowling good lines and lengths with there height rather than sheer pace, but they could crank it up into the 90's for the odd spell of bowling when they were displeased.

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Post by Smile Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 13:04

Raymond
Did you ever watch them live?

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Post by Pal Joey Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 13:16

Smile wrote:Marshall, Holding, Croft and Clarke were all 90mph plus.

Sylvester Clarke, right?

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Post by Raymond Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 13:16

look at my age and answer that for yourself, but watching the likes of lee, tait akhtar break down so easily (these guys bowl high 80's low 90's consistently) even with modern science and physiotherapy. I doubt these guy would be able to bowl that fast and not break down. Lee also didn't need to bowl much for aus as they had 3 other awesome bowlers. Based on these 3 troubles you can add simon jones to that who bowled high 80's low 90's. It is just two much for the body to do every time you bowl.

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Post by Smile Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 13:17

Linebreaker wrote:
Smile wrote:Marshall, Holding, Croft and Clarke were all 90mph plus.

Sylvester Clarke, right?

Yes.

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Post by Smile Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 13:21

Raymond
Steyn is no quicker than most of the west Indies quicks from the 70's and 80's.
You mentioned Lee not having to bowl often but the west indies had four quicks for most part.
Having seen them, I will tell you that they were as quick as most of todays bowlers.
Lee and Shoaib were maybe quicker but not Steyn.

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Post by Hoggy_Bear Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 13:27

Raymond wrote:I dont think the great west Indians were quicker than the fast bowlers today my dad who watched a lot of the them in the 70's says that they were all high 80's and could get into the 90's on a good day. He said Lee and Steyn are faster than all of them. (i wasn't around in the 70's so i'm just going on what others have said) But why isn't Steyn in that list I would have him above all the names in that list. For the list i choose glenn mcgrath

Holding, Roberts, Lillee and Thompson were variously timed at between 93 and 100 MPH using high speed cameras in two studies in 1975 and 76.

http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/records/283875.html

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Post by Raymond Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 13:33

Smile wrote:Raymond
Steyn is no quicker than most of the west Indies quicks from the 70's and 80's.
You mentioned Lee not having to bowl often but the west indies had four quicks for most part.
Having seen them, I will tell you that they were as quick as most of todays bowlers.
Lee and Shoaib were maybe quicker but not Steyn.

Never said Steyn was just said I would prefer him in my team than anyone on that list. I reckon that they would be about Steyn's pace who bowls fast but not too fast that his body breaks down. Your talking as if Steyn is slow he probably averages 86 mph and has been clocked at 97 mph.

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Post by Smile Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 13:36

Raymond
You said your Dad mentioned that Steyn was quicker than all of them?
Steyn usually bowls at 90mph doesn't he. I think he was faster in his youth but is now a better but slightly slower bowler.

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Post by Raymond Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 13:39

Hoggy_Bear wrote:
Raymond wrote:I dont think the great west Indians were quicker than the fast bowlers today my dad who watched a lot of the them in the 70's says that they were all high 80's and could get into the 90's on a good day. He said Lee and Steyn are faster than all of them. (i wasn't around in the 70's so i'm just going on what others have said) But why isn't Steyn in that list I would have him above all the names in that list. For the list i choose glenn mcgrath

Holding, Roberts, Lillee and Thompson were variously timed at between 93 and 100 MPH using high speed cameras in two studies in 1975 and 76.

http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/records/283875.html

does this take into account the accuracy of the ball? and i bet it the bowlers only bowled a few balls unlike in a test match. Finn can get up to 94 in 20/20 Harmison got up to 96 flintoff got up to 95.

I never said they couldn't bowl fast i just doubt they could bowl in the 90's spell after spell they would break down.

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Post by Raymond Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 13:40

Smile wrote:Raymond
You said your Dad mentioned that Steyn was quicker than all of them?
Steyn usually bowls at 90mph doesn't he. I think he was faster in his youth but is now a better but slightly slower bowler.

Sorry meant lee and tait.

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Post by Raymond Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 13:47

Steyn gets up to 90 when he bowls an effort ball last time he were in England i saw him live and he was stupidly quick. I recorded the days play on sky plus and i think the fastest he bowled was 91 and vs India he bowled to a similar pace to Broad this series in the mid 80's. I think alot of people don't think 85 is that fast, and well it is. I'm trying to find the definition of fast compared to fast medium.

Edit, Steyn has the ability to get into 90 when he bowls an effort ball where as boards is the high 80's

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Post by Mike Selig Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 15:33

We had this debate briefly on the "greatest ever england team" thread: personally I agree mostly with Raymond, but the point is rather moot as comparatively Holding was probably as quick as say Lee (that is he was as much "faster than the norm" as Lee was in his pomp, and therefore his raw pace had the same effect on batsmen). Having said that and having seen footage I think Holding may well be an exception in that he was bl00dy fast!

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Post by dummy_half Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 16:04

Mike

Of course with Holding you have to factor in his quality as a sprinter (Jamaican schools champion at 400m - that takes a lot of doing), and that his action was so smooth that he transferred pace to the ball better than almost anyone else ever in the game. With the possible exception of Brett Lee in his younger days, Holding was probably the fastest conventional* bowler I've ever seen.

* i.e. one with a classical action, not some sort of low armed or slingy action like Thommo or Malinga.

I'm not convinced that you are right in reckoning the old bowlers weren't topping 90mph at least on a semi-regular basis - probably they were a little slower than the present quicks, but not by the amounts you think.

For comparison, baseball has had reasonably accurate pitching speed guns for a long time, and the top fastball speed has only crept up by 1 or 2mph over the last 40 years - gym-based strength (and in baseball, some 'outside assistance') doesn't seem to offer really big gains in absolute pace, and I'm not convinced that a guy who bulks up in the gym is going to be any more robust that someone like Truman or Larwood who spent years working in coal mines and as such had exceptional strength endurance.

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Post by Smile Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 16:14

Patterson was as quick as most.

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Post by Hoggy_Bear Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 16:16

Raymond wrote:
Hoggy_Bear wrote:
Raymond wrote:I dont think the great west Indians were quicker than the fast bowlers today my dad who watched a lot of the them in the 70's says that they were all high 80's and could get into the 90's on a good day. He said Lee and Steyn are faster than all of them. (i wasn't around in the 70's so i'm just going on what others have said) But why isn't Steyn in that list I would have him above all the names in that list. For the list i choose glenn mcgrath

Holding, Roberts, Lillee and Thompson were variously timed at between 93 and 100 MPH using high speed cameras in two studies in 1975 and 76.

http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/records/283875.html

does this take into account the accuracy of the ball? and i bet it the bowlers only bowled a few balls unlike in a test match. Finn can get up to 94 in 20/20 Harmison got up to 96 flintoff got up to 95.

I never said they couldn't bowl fast i just doubt they could bowl in the 90's spell after spell they would break down.

Those studies were done, at least in part, using high speed cameras during matches as far as I'm aware.
There's a video giving more details on Youtube:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GjkBNxKZOE8&feature=related

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Post by Mike Selig Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 16:20

Baseball has always been (and still is) light-years ahead of cricket on biomechanics though, so I'm not sure that's such a valid comparison. Having said that my knowledge of baseball is very limited (essentially all I know from baseball is what I use of it to coach cricket) so I don't know when their technological "leap" took place, if ever.

I think a comparison with swimming (which IMHO has a similar potential for improvement through technique as well as fitness to cricket) is more apt: take the 100m freestyle (which happens to be the first I have looked up on Wiki), the world record has gone from roughly 55 seconds in the 50s to 47. that is an improvement of about 15-18%. Applying the same logic to cricket and accepting that Lee's average speed was say 95 mph, this would make fast bowler bowling in the 50s at around 78 mph on average.

Thus I do not think it beyond the realms of possibility to suggest that Lindwall was at tops an 80+ bowler.

It is interesting that in swimming the record drops actually fairly regularly (roughly 2.5 seconds per 10 years) until the mid 80s, when the drops become slower.

I agree entirely about Holding, I think he was a freak.

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Post by Guest Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 16:21

how is joel garner not on the list?

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Post by Smile Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 16:29

cricketfan90 wrote:how is joel garner not on the list?

Why are Thomson and Dev on that list.

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Post by Pal Joey Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 16:33

He'd be in a top 25 but not the best of the Windies bowlers. He was very intimidating but I'd have Marshall, Walsh & Ambrose ahead of him.

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Post by Pal Joey Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 16:35

Smile wrote:
cricketfan90 wrote:how is joel garner not on the list?

Why are Thomson and Dev on that list.

I'd definitely have Kapil Dev on there but I agree... Thommo is a stretch.

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Post by Smile Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 16:38

Linebreaker wrote:
Smile wrote:
cricketfan90 wrote:how is joel garner not on the list?

Why are Thomson and Dev on that list.

I'd definitely have Kapil Dev on there but I agree... Thommo is a stretch.

Dev ahead of Ambrose, Waqar Younis, Garner, Steyn?

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Post by Hoggy_Bear Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 16:41

Mike Selig wrote:Baseball has always been (and still is) light-years ahead of cricket on biomechanics though, so I'm not sure that's such a valid comparison. Having said that my knowledge of baseball is very limited (essentially all I know from baseball is what I use of it to coach cricket) so I don't know when their technological "leap" took place, if ever.

I think a comparison with swimming (which IMHO has a similar potential for improvement through technique as well as fitness to cricket) is more apt: take the 100m freestyle (which happens to be the first I have looked up on Wiki), the world record has gone from roughly 55 seconds in the 50s to 47. that is an improvement of about 15-18%. Applying the same logic to cricket and accepting that Lee's average speed was say 95 mph, this would make fast bowler bowling in the 50s at around 78 mph on average.

Thus I do not think it beyond the realms of possibility to suggest that Lindwall was at tops an 80+ bowler.

It is interesting that in swimming the record drops actually fairly regularly (roughly 2.5 seconds per 10 years) until the mid 80s, when the drops become slower.

I agree entirely about Holding, I think he was a freak.

Mike the comparison with swimming is hardly a valid one IMO. Firstly because swimmimg is a lot more technical IMO and secondly because swimming was nowhere near as professional, or as big, a sport in the 1930s/40s/50s as cricket, which had been a professional sport since the 1800s. Indeed it could be argued that swimming still isn't as professional or as big a sport.
There is also the question of the law of diminishing returns to consider. Therefore, even if cricketers are 15-20% better in terms of fitness and technique than players of, say, the 1950s (which I don't neccessarily think is true in all cases), that doesn't immediately mean they're going to be 15-20% quicker. Once you reach a certain point, you need large advances in fitness/technique to make small advances in performance.
So, again, I'd say it's possible that, at the top end, the fastest of todays bowlers might be slightly faster than the fastest bowlers of the past, and I would accept that today's fast men may be able to maintain their pace longer than fastmen in the past were, in general, able to do. However, your assertion that bowlers such as Ray Lindwall were little quicker than Ravi Bopara seems a little over the top to me, and I'm sure that anyone who faced or saw Linwall would agree with me.

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The Greatest Fast Bowlers Empty Re: The Greatest Fast Bowlers

Post by Pal Joey Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 16:46

Smile wrote:
Linebreaker wrote:
Smile wrote:
cricketfan90 wrote:how is joel garner not on the list?

Why are Thomson and Dev on that list.

I'd definitely have Kapil Dev on there but I agree... Thommo is a stretch.

Dev ahead of Ambrose, Waqar Younis, Garner, Steyn?

No, in the list above. He took loads of wickets against the best teams for many years. Younis would be in a top 10, but not Garner or Steyn (yet)

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The Greatest Fast Bowlers Empty Re: The Greatest Fast Bowlers

Post by Smile Tue 23 Aug 2011 - 16:48

Linebreaker wrote:
Smile wrote:
Linebreaker wrote:
Smile wrote:
cricketfan90 wrote:how is joel garner not on the list?

Why are Thomson and Dev on that list.

I'd definitely have Kapil Dev on there but I agree... Thommo is a stretch.

Dev ahead of Ambrose, Waqar Younis, Garner, Steyn?

No, in the list above. He took loads of wickets against the best teams for many years. Younis would be in a top 10, but not Garner or Steyn (yet)

Ambrose?

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