Thommo's top 10 Fast Bowlers of all Time




When I was a kid I tried emulating his bowling style until I couldn’t bowl any other way. Quite unique.

As I kiwi of course we thought Hadlee was the best but if I was to have a favourite after that it would be Lillee . He was well ahead of his time and a true legend .


@JohanCruyff Hadley was a pretty handy player by the way. The other I liked was John Snow.

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they could be brothers :wink:

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Rodney Hogg was up there as well

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I remember the West Indies bowlers. They were very fast- there were a lot of them and they were relentless. Mind you Glenn was very good- left arm came from a high height and impossible to play if you were a right hander.

I remember handing a ball back to Joel Garner over the fence at the SCG at the first one day day-nighter there. As well as his height I remember his hands were as big as baseball mitts.

Another favourite was Bruce Reid. Unfortunately he was too fragile to reach his potential.


Rubbish. How Steyn is a better bowler than McGrath; so not the case. Also, he may well and should interchange Steyn with Akram.

Hello? Andy Roberts doesn’t get a mention?


He got the #1 right! What a bowler! I would not have McGrath in the 10. @OscarWinningRabbit
Definitely don’t get the no Andy Roberts there!

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Agree with Thommo on #1. I saw Malcolm Marshall in the flesh at the 1984 Sydney test. He was phenomenal. Super quick, accurate and moving the ball both ways.

I imagine with his arm action being so fast, he would have been really hard to sight the ball coming out of his hand.

Devon Malcolm on his day was as fast and hostile as anyone I’ve seen.

He just lacked consistency . He bowled some great stuff but a heap of shit to go with it.

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For those who may have issues with the layout of the original post, here are the 10 bowlers Thommo mentioned:

10 - Glenn McGrath (AU)
9 - Michael Holding (WI)
8 - Joel Garner (WI)
7 - Dale Steyn (SA)
6 - Curtley Ambrose (WI)
5 - Allan Donald (SA)
4 - Richard Hadlee (NZ)
3 - Dennis Lillee (AU)
2 - Wasim Akram (PA)
1 - Malcolm Marshall (WI)

And if you put Thommo with his 10 picked players in a team, if you were on the opposing team facing this team of 11 bowlers, I think you will not only be needing helmets, chest pads, arm pads, leg pads and a box, you will needing to pack some brown undies lined with absorption pads as well.

would be an interesting experiment a team of the worlds best bowlers vs a team of the worlds batters

That would be interesting.

Best of all time is a stretch. Best in Thommo’s time maybe.

Before them Australia had Lindwall, Miller and Davidson; England had Trueman and Statham and the Indies had Wes Hall


England also had Harold Larwood, whom Ray Lindwall was influenced by Larwood’s his bowling technique.

Thommo said best in last 50 years in the actual article. The sub editor added the best of all time bit.
So since 1970 or so…

Ok then. Alan Hurst and Froggy Thomson.