November 12, 2011

Lillee forever, Steyn today

Eight former fast bowlers pick their all-time and current favourite quicks
165

Richard Hadlee

All-time favourite fast bowler Dennis Lillee. He was a complete package. He had a presence. He ran in straight at you, hard and fast, with a wonderful side-on technique. He had the skills. He could intimidate to get you out. Three hundred and fifty five Test wickets, striking at five per Test. Statistically there might be better bowlers, but Lillee was the always the role model for me.

Current favourite
James Anderson has been impressive - outswinger, inswinger, good control. He is lively and has really come on in the last few years. He is probably the No.1 fast bowler at the moment, followed by Steyn and Morne Morkel.

Curtly Ambrose

All-time favourite fast bowler My two favourite fast bowlers of all time are Wasim Akram and Glenn McGrath. Akram, to me, had done things with a cricket ball not too many people could do: he could swing the ball, new or old, any time of the day, any time of the match. He was just a special bowler. McGrath was very similar to me. We both kept it very simple: we could put the ball on the spot all day long, the whole week. It was just natural. Both of us just improved with years.

Andy Roberts

All-time favourite fast bowler Any one between Dennis Lillee, Michael Holding and Malcolm Marshall. Lillee - for his aggression, his control and that he could swing the ball both ways. Mikey - his smoothness, his pace and his consistency. Malcolm - his approach to fast bowling was very different and he could do anything with the ball both ways.

Current favourite
There is only one, Dale Steyn. I admire his approach to fast bowling, his aggression. And he is like me - you hardly ever see him smile because he has work to do.

Courtney Walsh

All-time favourite fast bowler Malcolm Marshall, as a complete fast bowler. He stood out for his skills, swinging the ball, control, good pace, accuracy, determination. A very talented bowler. I learned a lot from him.

Current favourite
For England, Anderson is very good. I have always also been impressed by Fidel Edwards, who has good pace. The one that I would really like to see play but is always injured is Jerome Taylor. He has got a lot of ability and talent.

Clive Rice

All-time favourite fast bowler Dennis Lillee was fantastic. His skills, his attitude would easily make him a mentor and hero. When you talk about a fast bowler you are talking about a specialist fast bowler. Dennis Lillee was that one.

Current favourite
I like Steyn. He is quick, he is a very good bowler, he has got the skills.

Glenn McGrath

All-time favourite fast bowler My hero growing up was Dennis Lillee. But from my playing days, the guys who stand out for me, and I like watching, were Ambrose and Akram. I liked watching Curtly - he could just crack and get everyone one quickly, and he looked so laidback and relaxed. Akram just powered through the crease left-arm, could swing the ball both ways, was an incredible fast bowler.

Current favourite
To me, of the current, they have not played enough Test matches to really qualify for the best fast bowler grade. In saying that, I have definitely been impressed by the England fast bowling unit. Jimmy Anderson has always had good potential and he is now doing well outside of England. Bresnan has impressed me with the areas he bowls and builds good pressure, as does Broad.

Mike Procter

All-time favourite fast bowler Dennis Lillee. He always gave a 100% on the field. He was a complete trier. He never gave up. And he was very hostile. He was a true great fast bowler.

Current favourite
Dale Steyn is the best. He is an out-and-out fast bowler. He has a lovely action, has good control, bowls a nice away-swinger and always looks like taking wickets.

Shane Bond

All-time favourite fast bowler Growing up, Richard Hadlee was my hero. He was consistent, got so many wickets, and I followed him very closely. I still have all his books and videos and they taught me a lot. He was theguy I tried to copy. I was lucky to see him get his 400th Test wicket at Christchurch, where I was working on the sightscreens then.

Current favourite I was always impressed by Brett Lee, who paid a lot of attention to fitness and the way he went about his work. Dale Steyn is another very good athlete and a very good fast bowler.

Nagraj Gollapudi is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • SyedArbabAhmed on November 16, 2011, 5:48 GMT

    Lillee average is not great as the averages of Malcolm Marshall or Wasim Akram, and he also bowled most of the time either in Australia or in England, but Wasim Akram bowled mostly on dead Asian wickets, so he was the best to me in all respects.

  • Shan156 on November 15, 2011, 17:52 GMT

    People talk up Zaheer as if he were Wasim Akram. He is good but an Akram, he is not. If Anderson is ordinary, then so is Zaheer.

    Anderson has been too good in the last few years not just in the helpful English conditions but also in Australia where he was ordinary in 2006-2007.

    Yes, Steyn is good but has he really proved himself in all conditions against all teams? He averages 34 against England, 36 in England, 36 in SL and 46 in UAE. Granted they were only a few tests but then you have to reserve judgment till he plays a few more tests against England and in SL. Just because he has great stats in India doesn't mean he could be compared to the greats of yesteryear. He could well go on and even finish with a career better than the Marshalls and Holdings but he still needs to prove himself against a few other teams in few other conditions. Chances are he will do very well in England if he played a few more games but that isn't a given.

  • JUUREL on November 15, 2011, 13:08 GMT

    Steyn is by far the best bowler in the world. He has been tested in all condition and has come up tops. As far as Anderson and bresnan are concerned, in helpful conditions they are good but otherwise they seem pretty ordinary. If it was not the fastest bowler then Zaheer Khan should have got mention with his ability to swing the ball both ways and his superb control..

  • on November 15, 2011, 2:44 GMT

    I saw Afridi bowl a one-off 136km ball here in NZ last year, off his usual run-up in an ODI. can't see many spinners do that

  • serious-am-i on November 14, 2011, 21:38 GMT

    @waleed: The fastest spinner isn't Afridi, I think its Anil Kumble. If some one can put up their max speeds we could know difference and I am pretty sure there isn't much between them though.

  • BillyCC on November 14, 2011, 21:10 GMT

    @amitgarg78, that is flawed reasoning to say that any fast bowler who doesn't pass the Asia test cannot be great. You need to have played a lot of tests in Asia for that test to be relevant, Lillee only played a handful so we actually don't know how good he would have been in Asia. Everyone uses Steyn as an example of current great fast bowling in India. But he has only played a handful of tests there and so it wouldn't take much for his average to balloon over 30 if he has a couple of poor series.

  • andrew2011 on November 14, 2011, 19:58 GMT

    anyone who mentions Hadlee's strike rate needs to consider that he was the primary bowler in his team ... a great bowler (and all rounder) but had a lot more opportunity to accumulate wickets than the individuals in a 4-prong world class west indian line-up

    for me the best was lillee ... but there were so many from the 80's/90's that could be considered great - from all nations ... just makes you think how weak fast bolwing has become now when we can only think of a couple of good fast bowlers ... also makes you think how good the batsmen who averaged 50+ like g.chappell etc were compared to the numerous batsmen who end up in the 50's today!

  • bsriramster on November 14, 2011, 17:11 GMT

    The complete fast bowler for speed,accuracy,run-up and action Wesley W.Hall is my favorite.Hall hardly bowled a no ball when back-foot rule was applicable.Moreover Hall did not exhibit ferociousness over batsmen and bowling fast came naturally to him. Remember his eight ball over in the tied test at Brisbane in 1959-60 series.

  • VivGilchrist on November 14, 2011, 10:56 GMT

    @wagon_wheel, so by your reasoning then Sub-continental batsmen should be judged differently as the bat on roads most of the time?

  • on November 14, 2011, 3:16 GMT

    For however long they play for or whatever their final stats are guys like Khan, Lee & Anderson will or can never be regarded as truly GREAT bowlers.Very few men were and still are but Hadlee IMHO is one of them. Classic effortless action, unerring back of a length and line accuracy, effective even on the flatest and most benign of tracks, a 'thinking' man's bowler; he genuinely bowled to dismiss batsmen with at times unplayable deliveries (rather than they get themselves out) He was especially prolific towards the end of his career while guys of today (e.g. Broad, Morkel, Johnson, Edwards) just run in, bang it down to see what happens and then gradually get and remain more erratic and expensive - their bowling averages and strike rates - Steyn apart- are off the charts compared to his. The only other bowler that really matches him is McGrath who apparently doesn't know what he's talking about?. His favourite bowler of all time?... RJ Hadlee...enuff said!!!

  • SyedArbabAhmed on November 16, 2011, 5:48 GMT

    Lillee average is not great as the averages of Malcolm Marshall or Wasim Akram, and he also bowled most of the time either in Australia or in England, but Wasim Akram bowled mostly on dead Asian wickets, so he was the best to me in all respects.

  • Shan156 on November 15, 2011, 17:52 GMT

    People talk up Zaheer as if he were Wasim Akram. He is good but an Akram, he is not. If Anderson is ordinary, then so is Zaheer.

    Anderson has been too good in the last few years not just in the helpful English conditions but also in Australia where he was ordinary in 2006-2007.

    Yes, Steyn is good but has he really proved himself in all conditions against all teams? He averages 34 against England, 36 in England, 36 in SL and 46 in UAE. Granted they were only a few tests but then you have to reserve judgment till he plays a few more tests against England and in SL. Just because he has great stats in India doesn't mean he could be compared to the greats of yesteryear. He could well go on and even finish with a career better than the Marshalls and Holdings but he still needs to prove himself against a few other teams in few other conditions. Chances are he will do very well in England if he played a few more games but that isn't a given.

  • JUUREL on November 15, 2011, 13:08 GMT

    Steyn is by far the best bowler in the world. He has been tested in all condition and has come up tops. As far as Anderson and bresnan are concerned, in helpful conditions they are good but otherwise they seem pretty ordinary. If it was not the fastest bowler then Zaheer Khan should have got mention with his ability to swing the ball both ways and his superb control..

  • on November 15, 2011, 2:44 GMT

    I saw Afridi bowl a one-off 136km ball here in NZ last year, off his usual run-up in an ODI. can't see many spinners do that

  • serious-am-i on November 14, 2011, 21:38 GMT

    @waleed: The fastest spinner isn't Afridi, I think its Anil Kumble. If some one can put up their max speeds we could know difference and I am pretty sure there isn't much between them though.

  • BillyCC on November 14, 2011, 21:10 GMT

    @amitgarg78, that is flawed reasoning to say that any fast bowler who doesn't pass the Asia test cannot be great. You need to have played a lot of tests in Asia for that test to be relevant, Lillee only played a handful so we actually don't know how good he would have been in Asia. Everyone uses Steyn as an example of current great fast bowling in India. But he has only played a handful of tests there and so it wouldn't take much for his average to balloon over 30 if he has a couple of poor series.

  • andrew2011 on November 14, 2011, 19:58 GMT

    anyone who mentions Hadlee's strike rate needs to consider that he was the primary bowler in his team ... a great bowler (and all rounder) but had a lot more opportunity to accumulate wickets than the individuals in a 4-prong world class west indian line-up

    for me the best was lillee ... but there were so many from the 80's/90's that could be considered great - from all nations ... just makes you think how weak fast bolwing has become now when we can only think of a couple of good fast bowlers ... also makes you think how good the batsmen who averaged 50+ like g.chappell etc were compared to the numerous batsmen who end up in the 50's today!

  • bsriramster on November 14, 2011, 17:11 GMT

    The complete fast bowler for speed,accuracy,run-up and action Wesley W.Hall is my favorite.Hall hardly bowled a no ball when back-foot rule was applicable.Moreover Hall did not exhibit ferociousness over batsmen and bowling fast came naturally to him. Remember his eight ball over in the tied test at Brisbane in 1959-60 series.

  • VivGilchrist on November 14, 2011, 10:56 GMT

    @wagon_wheel, so by your reasoning then Sub-continental batsmen should be judged differently as the bat on roads most of the time?

  • on November 14, 2011, 3:16 GMT

    For however long they play for or whatever their final stats are guys like Khan, Lee & Anderson will or can never be regarded as truly GREAT bowlers.Very few men were and still are but Hadlee IMHO is one of them. Classic effortless action, unerring back of a length and line accuracy, effective even on the flatest and most benign of tracks, a 'thinking' man's bowler; he genuinely bowled to dismiss batsmen with at times unplayable deliveries (rather than they get themselves out) He was especially prolific towards the end of his career while guys of today (e.g. Broad, Morkel, Johnson, Edwards) just run in, bang it down to see what happens and then gradually get and remain more erratic and expensive - their bowling averages and strike rates - Steyn apart- are off the charts compared to his. The only other bowler that really matches him is McGrath who apparently doesn't know what he's talking about?. His favourite bowler of all time?... RJ Hadlee...enuff said!!!

  • NairUSA on November 14, 2011, 0:56 GMT

    It is tough to be a true fast bowler and the bowlers listed here had earned them. Marshall, Holding & Roberts are synonymous with fast bowling any time. However, it is clear that Dale Steyn is the only one who can be easily picked as a current favorite.

  • wagon_wheel on November 13, 2011, 18:40 GMT

    While the WI players made genuine choices ie Steyn, the argument about the current best fast bowler will live to see another day. Steyn is an outstanding bowler and I will go as far as rating him among the all time greats. But Anderson, Brett Lee.... highly questionable. For that matter Zaheer Khan will be notches above these guys. I am sure the opinions of sub continent fast bowlers must be taken into account before deciding upon the current great fast bowlers. Akram has many a times rated Zaheer Khan as one of the best. I am sure he will rate Zaheer above Anderson and Lee or any other, keeping steyn aside. Zaheer is a wizard with the ball in subcontinent pitches and has in fact done very well in England, SA, NZ.

  • CaughtAndBowled on November 13, 2011, 18:17 GMT

    Captcroc, are you sure about Kapil Dev? After all he averaged less than 25 when he bowled in Oz. That is not bad at all!!!

  • amitgarg78 on November 13, 2011, 16:31 GMT

    @shan156 any fast bowler who doesn't pass the "test" in asia in repeated attempts can not possibly qualify as an all time great and i really dont care what mcgrath had to say on this. his view i guess, is colored by the aussie losses in ashes and he is yet to get over the shock. Lets face it, Anderson needs the conditions to be in his favor to be effective coz he is either too good or too poor depending on them. Before anyone else starts jumping, i accept that he is good but for mcgrath to only talk of eng bowlers, i think is just flawed judgement. Steyn on the other hand is very good and in all conditions including so called dustbowls in India. People rate marshall, wasim as all time greats coz they performed in all conditions and not just when it was helpful. Anderson hasnt been able to deliver on that "test" & till that happens, he wont make my list just as zaheer or any other indian pace bowler wouldnt make my list. Zak actually does better in Eng than Anderson in India!

  • 9-Monkeys on November 13, 2011, 16:18 GMT

    If were asked to pick a Test 11 from the best players I have seen play Lillee and Marshall would be the first two I would pick.

    Yes, Lillee's results on the sub-continent are not good. Absolutely no argument there. But statistics simply do not tell you everything. The 1970's and 80's was a fantastic period for fast, fast-medium bowlers (Lillee, Thomson, Marshall, Garner, Holding, Croft, Willis, Snow, Dev, Khan, Botham, Hadlee and more) and when asked, the great batsmen of the period generally rate Lillee in the top 2-3 bowlers of the period. Just as importantly the bowlers of the period all rated themselves against Lillee, he was the benchmark/the gold standard of genuine fast bowlers and that must tell you something.

  • on November 13, 2011, 14:04 GMT

    Have To pick Steyn above Anderson, 20th bowler to reach the 900 point club, in 47 tests he has picked up 244 wickets, His control of the ball and constant threat, picking up crucial wickets when partnerships have formed, How often does he come back for a spell and get a wicket in that first few balls, Great bowling action, a true fast bowler. Always great to watch bowling!!

  • on November 13, 2011, 12:21 GMT

    For me Sir Richard Hadlee was not just a genuine all rounder - a very fine one at that but he has to go down as one of THE greatest BOWLERS of ALL TIME Statistically his test match figures are beyond comparison because in most cases but with the exception of Malcolm Marshall they are far superior to those of his counterparts.Highest wickets taken to matches completed ratio: 431 from 86 equivalent to five per test the true benchmark for great bowlers. At the time of his retirement in 1990/91 he had the best bowling average of 22.29..only 3 men of the modern era have better ones..(Marshall played in five fewer games but eventually fiinished 55!! wickets short of Hadlees final figure.) For fast bowlers he holds the highest no. of 'five fers' (36) best one innnigs analysis of 9 for 52 (1985) and best match analysis of 15-123 (1985) the 10th best of all time and improved only by Murali since. Boycott said he was the best he ever faced. Praise indeed!

  • on November 13, 2011, 11:47 GMT

    what about gul, malinga and southee??? i mean they all have improved alot!

  • Captcroc on November 13, 2011, 11:34 GMT

    Oh dear, Chetan Asher. Srinath, Kapil and Zaheer have all struggled in Australia. Take your blinkers off. Srinath was rubbish when he played in Oz, Kapil, great player, just a hitable medium pacer in Oz, and Zaheer nothing special. Goes both ways. Lillee was absolutely brilliant.

  • harshthakor on November 13, 2011, 11:20 GMT

    Waqay Younus and Allan Donald come close but miss out because they did not display the consistency of Mcgrath,Ambrose and Akram.Stats Wise Waqar had the best of strike rates and looked to better the figures of the likes of Hadlee or Imran.However he did not mantain his performances towards the end.Waqar performed brilliantly against weaker teams like Sri Lanka,Zimbabwe etc and did not perform as well in South Africa and Australia.He was quicker than anyone in his time but did not posess Akram's variation.Allan Donald ,similarly posessed greater pace than Ambrose,Akram or Mcgrath but was nosed out because he did not have the same accuracy,control and versatility of the other 3.In pure figs Waqar and Donald may have nosed ahead of Akram and Ambrose but stats does not give the true moral picture.In the modern era Mcgrath was the ultimate machine.

  • harshthakor on November 13, 2011, 11:11 GMT

    I wish to reiterate my position on Lillee.Marshall had more skill but did not bowl to the same calibre of opposition or single-handedly turned the complexion of games like Lillee.Lillee morally captured 446 wickets ,if you add the Packer era stats and the games against Rest of the World in 1972.In Packer cricket he bowled to the greats like Viv and Barry Richards.Lillee was a champion on flat tracks like at the Oval in 1972 and at Melbourne in 1977 and 1980 ,all against England,and hardly got a chance on the sub-continent.Infact I repeat in match performance analysis conducted by Ananth Narayana Lillee is 2 points ahead of Marshall.

    Wasim Akram had the greatest skill but his performances did not equal those of Hadlee and Imran.In their peak years they had phenomenal strike rates of around 45 balls per wicket and averaged around 18 runs.Imran was a champion against the mighty Carribeans and on sub-continent tracks while Hadlee solely bore the brunt of a weak attack.

  • Captcroc on November 13, 2011, 10:42 GMT

    Steyn is easily the best going around today.Anderson has cleaned out Australia's cage twice in a row. excellent bowler.Zaheer Khan! Give me a break....... Lillee, Hadlee, Roberts, Marshall, Donald, Ambrose and Akram the best of the modern day retired, ahead of McGrath, Imran, Garner, Holding and John Snow. Simon Jones was brilliant before his knees gave way, terrific bowler. Lillee at the MCG, nothing like it, just ask Viv!!!!!!

  • MaruthuDelft on November 13, 2011, 9:39 GMT

    They miss the point. Besides all what is said above Lillee is like Viv Richards. You pay many pounds to get in; your favourite cricketer must deliver at once; Viv would whack the first ball; Lillee would find the edge in the first over. AND they would do it in great style. They would thrill you from ball number one; against any opposition; until the very end they remained that way; Marshal and Tendulkar reduced their intensity. Hadlee was almost equal to Lillee but not hostile enough. Akram often failed in his first spell. Ambrose was lacklusture all too often. McGrath had a placid personality. Holding was hardly the leader of attack. Steyn a little too boyish. Anderson??? He is not a great bowler.

  • Number_5 on November 13, 2011, 9:30 GMT

    You cant get any higher praise from the best themselves, DK Lillee, the man. Nothing beats the sight of a great fast bowler charging in to do battle with a batsman..great article, to really round it off i would have loved to have heard from Akram, Bob Willis or John Snow, Kapil Dev etc to get a really rounded view from some of the greats, put still a great read..

  • tjsimonsen on November 13, 2011, 9:22 GMT

    @puskas: I do agree with you to some extend, Lohman and Barnes were two of the best bowlers (regardles of style) EVER to play the game (Barnes may well have been THE best). But were they PACE bowlers? Lohman was medium at best, and while Barnes operated at pace, I have seen reports that suggested that he actually bowled spin at fast medium or even fast pace (which certainly gose some way to explain his apparently unsurpassed control of movement off the pitch), and the 'swing' he produced was more akin to the drift modern spinners like Warne and Swann get today. BTW, don't forget Fred Spoffoth - the first truly great pace bowler! Well, restricting myself to pace bowlers during the 20-25 years I have been following cricket, my top three (in no particular order) would be: Donald, Marshall, Akram. I agree that Steyn is the best today by some distance, but Anderson of today (not of 5 years ago) is grossly underrated, and probably as far ahead of the rest as Steyn is ahead of him.

  • on November 13, 2011, 7:13 GMT

    All the guys whose inputs are here were pretty good fast men themselves, some of them definitely the greats of the game. I do have a lot of admiration for Lillee on how he understood and rebuilt his body post a career threatening injury, and gained more smarts. However, his performances in subcontinent would, in my book - keep him a shade lower than the ultimate fast bowler. If cricketing God was a fast bowler - there are only two men who qualify to be his arms: Malcolm Marshall ( right arm) and Wasim Akram (left arm).

  • on November 13, 2011, 6:34 GMT

    I see a lot of interesting comments here. Only thing I am wondering - given the reputation of Indian pitches, I would think that at least knowledgeable & thinking cricketers would give additional brownie points to fast bowlers who bowl in India AND get wickets. Lillee therefore, though one of the better bowlers I have seen automatically disqualifies himself. Akram, Marshall & Roberts yes these guys were great, they got wickets in India, did not need the green-tops of Perth & Brisbane. It is exactly keeping this fact in Mind that I feel Srinath, Kapil & Zaheer should be considered above some Australian / South African greats. The Aussies & SA bowlers had the support of bouncy green tops during their home series where they played about 50% of their matches. The Indians had the handicap of dead as dodo pitches in India during the same 50 %. The success of Indian quicks therefore required more craft, guile & better bowling discipline and ability.

  • MartinPe on November 13, 2011, 5:59 GMT

    Lillie, Hadlee,Donald, McGrath, Imran, Wasim, Marshall, Ambrose they all our my favorites! they all great bowlers! Each have a different quality as many great players pointed. But for me all time great was Wasim Akram......such an awsome bowler who can bowl anytime of a game and in any situation. When he has the bowl on his hand sure any batsman will wonder what will happend? such a dangerous bowler......I am not a Pakistan fan.....

  • Maui3 on November 13, 2011, 5:56 GMT

    Lillee, Marshall, Akram, Ambrose, McGrath, Steyn make sense. But Anderson? He's two notches below greatness. All of the above (with the exception of Lillee) have had huge success in the subcontinent, where there is hardly any help for bowlers, but Anderson (or Broad or Bresnen) hasn't done a thing yet.

  • Amol_Gh on November 13, 2011, 4:32 GMT

    The guy who has erupted the stumps of Sachin MOST times is Allan Donald. Unlike McGrath who had to be depend on his team-mates to take catches of Sachin, Lara, Kallis off his bowling.

  • StarsnStumps on November 13, 2011, 4:31 GMT

    alot of indians some how end up including Zaheer Khan in their list of current greats ... come on ppl ow does taking 270 wickets @ 3.3 per match make u a GREAT?? I like the guy's bowling and i think he has been the most improved bowler in world cricket and the only fast bowler of substance from india since srinath but he is no great ... for that u have to be very consistent, very fit and have good numbers and many memorable performances ... steyn ticks all those boxes zak does not

  • Amol_Gh on November 13, 2011, 4:28 GMT

    Alan Donald's international was short in a way because he spent his early career years in apartheid in the late 1980s playing county cricket. Any international batsman playing county cricket then knew what terrorizing talent Donald was made of.

  • Amol_Gh on November 13, 2011, 4:15 GMT

    I was just a child in the late 1980s and only understood cricket from the 1990s onwards. And so if the four of the five modern (or all-time) batting greats - Sachin, Lara, Dravid and Ponting - themselves said in a lot of their interviews, that Alan Donald was their common most terrorizing bowler, then I don't much care about what the bowlers (past or present) have to say. Batsmen know Bowlers better than the other bowlers. The fifth great batsman of today is Kallis who never had to face Donald in an international match, anyway.

  • Kaze on November 13, 2011, 4:14 GMT

    Lillee, Hadlee and Marshall those are my top 3 ever. McGrath, Akram and Ambrose are the best of the modern era.

  • D.Nagarajan on November 13, 2011, 3:54 GMT

    1.Malcolm Marshall -Took wickets and scared the hell out of the batsmen, the greatest ever quick. 2.Wasim Akram-Greatest ever left arm quick 3.Dennis lillee- Well he started it in the 70's,never played a test in India. 4. Michael Holding- The most beautiful, the rolls Royce! 5. Bit confused between Imran and Hadlee Fast bowlers of today- There is only Dale Steyn!

  • SunnyD on November 13, 2011, 3:54 GMT

    Thy should have Sachin, Lara, Dravid, Pointing and Kallis about this opinion.

  • aaamsaasza on November 13, 2011, 3:43 GMT

    Three best bowlers cricket has seen in the past fifty years are Akram, McGrath, and (late) Marshal. Akram for his variety, McGrath for his consistency, and Marshal for his aggression. These three bowlers were lethal on the most batsman friendly pitches. Four other bowlers much better, consistent, and more aggressive then Lillee are Allan Donald, Andy Roberts, Courtney Walsh and Joel Garner. Compare Lillee's record in subcontinent with any of the above bowlers and make your own decision. Lillee was most dangerous however in certain conditions..... Whereas the bowlers listed above...... in any condition. Ask Lillee who is one batsman he hated most.... And his answer will be Taslim Arif of Pakistan (match # 878... 1980 was the last time Lillee was seen in subcontinent). Presently...... I don't think any bowler has the same qualities like the bowlers listed above. Dale Steyn is a very good bowler but..... like Lillee he also needs favorable conditions.

  • featurewriter on November 13, 2011, 3:31 GMT

    I think a better judge of great fast bowlers would be the batsmen who faced them. I'd love to hear from some long-term Test opening batsmen who they feared the most. Who would Sehwag, Hayden, Langer, Barry Richards, Gavaskar, Atherton, Greenidge, Haynes, etc. say was the most fearsome? Most of the bowlers here, even the bowling all-rounders, have essentially identified bowlers who they admired or who were very much like themselves. Responses seem more like a mates club than an assessment of the best fast bowlers.

  • on November 13, 2011, 2:59 GMT

    Lillie,Sir Hadlee,Imran,McGrath,Wasim,Waqar,Trueman,Donald and the West Indian Terrors will obviously be the best Fast Bowlers of all time.Among the current lot Steyn is way ahead of the pack with Zaheer coming second.Both these guys also have a good slower one.Among the rest Brett Lee is a rocket though he has quit tests and only plays a few limited overs games here and there.Mitch Johnson can be a very lethal bowler on his day.Excellent action and capable of crossing 150 kmph.Only problem is his consistency of late.With consistency he can be among the world's top bowlers.Among current West Indian Bowlers I like Roach and Edwards though they are not as terrifying as Ambrose,Walsh,Roberts,Holding,Garner et al.Broad,Anderson and their ilk are very overrated I feel.

  • nzcricket174 on November 13, 2011, 2:16 GMT

    Shane Bond would be up there if he played all the tests he should have.

  • RandyOZ on November 13, 2011, 2:07 GMT

    @BillyCC, well said mate. Dale Steyn eats Anderson for breakfast. The only thing Jimmy does outside India is collect leather from the stands. Steyn is gonna be up there with the likes of McGrath by the time he finishes. The SA attack at the moment beats any of the popgun attacks the guys up north field.

  • DragonCricketer1964 on November 13, 2011, 1:47 GMT

    Jeff Thomson of course !! They should get rid of helmets again. (Maybe pads as well)

  • on November 13, 2011, 1:11 GMT

    This is about favorites, so everyone has their pick, not necessarily the best ever. I loved watching Akram and Waqar bowl, and Curtly Ambrose was brilliant. But there is no doubt about the current crop - Dale Steyn is a great in the making, miles ahead of anyone else. Anyone who watched his epic battle with Tendulkar last year will have no doubt of that...

  • Chirs-Cry on November 13, 2011, 1:04 GMT

    @serious-am-i - Duh ! I know Afridi is a spinner, fastest ever, actually. As far as Zaheer is concerned he only performed at his best in the World Cup 2011. India should be thankful to the God, not talking about Sachin, that Zak didnt get injured in the world cup.

  • inswing on November 13, 2011, 0:52 GMT

    Marshall was the greastest fast bowler ever, followed by Akram. Lillee was great too, but his numbers are racked up against mediocre to weak Eng and NZ lineups in familiar and helpful conditions. Marshall could run through a side on any pitch, not Lillee.

  • on November 13, 2011, 0:15 GMT

    xcuse me!!!!! ...........where is RAWALPINDI XPRESS???? :o

  • cricketSB on November 12, 2011, 23:40 GMT

    Lillee was great under helpful conditions. He usually skipped tours to the subcontinent, and tormented a bunch of ordinary batsmen from Eng and NZ. Even Sreesanth can do that in helpful conditions. Akram and Waqar dismissed more tailenders than proper batsmen, but they did it very well. I'm surprised that nobody even mentioned Allan Donald. Unlike many others, Donald was a threat on all types of pitches; he must have had something special to do that. The Andersons, Broads, Edwards, Taylors are very good, but not great. Remember, you can hit some of them for as many 6's as you want in an over.

  • dhasan94 on November 12, 2011, 23:34 GMT

    All the bowlers listed are great. However, I think that the best among them was Wasim Akram. He bowled during a time in which the rules were changing, such as only one bouncer per over, which made it harder for the bowlers to attack and "scare" the batsmen. Also more runs were being scored and some of the best batsmen were playing at the time. He showed true talent and skill to become the first man to take 500 odi wickets. It was he who mesmerized the world by his ability to bowl fast, aggressive, and to swing the ball both ways. Wasim won numerous matches for the team and not only was his bowling great, his character, understanding of the game, his ability with the bat, which all contribute to shape a cricketer, were outstanding

  • on November 12, 2011, 22:53 GMT

    anderson ha ha ha .......... he is an average bowler.In india he is not a kind of bowler who should be picked for first choice playing 11 . I think steyen is nbest bowler in current bowlers

  • on November 12, 2011, 22:34 GMT

    at ALOK RANJAN SINGH "Just visualize a dream-bowler with Marshall's movement and deception, Lillee's run-up and action, Akram's swing and control". Sounds to me like you are describing malcolm marshall in full, with out any need for mentioning the names of the other greats.Malcolm had an incredible sprinters run up almost like he danced like a dervish into the wicket, he had swing and mastery almost unsurpassed apart from akram and younish and imran. Malcolms run up and action was the best of all time. It is a little sad the ian botham of 1977-1981 isnt really mentioned he was a truly brilliant genuine fast bowler who at that time had some of the best averages and strike rate of all time. Still botham is one of the greatest all rounders of all time and in that debate he wont be overlooked i guarantee

  • FanofCleanCricket on November 12, 2011, 22:00 GMT

    Well, its very interesting to see people having concerns over the pick made by the legends. We surely should respect their opinion, especially when they have to pick top most. This is the main reason why we can't see much of Waqar, Donald or even Imran. They surely deserve respect to be rated amongst top ones in the list. Lets enjoy more of these discussions and show patience :).

    If it is pure quicks that we are discussing here then probably Steyn is the only one in current era (along with Morkel). No other team has fast bowler therefore pick is much easier. Having said that, for those who have seen Waqar and Donald bowling live in the stadiums will agree to me that they were deadly quick and no batsman was comfortable against them. Putting Akram or McGrath in the same picture cannot give you same feeling as these legends were good to be seen on TV replays but not as great to see live as Waqar/ Donald were in the stadium. Surely Marshall and Lillee must had the same lethal effects.

  • serious-am-i on November 12, 2011, 21:25 GMT

    My fav. since I have started watching cricket was Shane Bond. He was too injury prone. Akram's my fav. left armer, considering I was a left arm bowler in school who bowled military medium :p I think Waqar was better than Anderson. Broad and Bresnan are brought into equation too fast, they bowled well only against toothless Indian batting which struggled through out English tour due to various reasons. Broad struggled again SL just before Ind series. @waleed: May be you forgot Afridi is a spinner. Zaheer is a dangerous bowler in swinging conditions.@hillbumper: Harbhajan is useless even in India, he would take wickets only when he felt there was a danger to his slot. I hope BCCI don't stick with Harbhajan any more. He is some one who forgot how to bowl where as could score few runs once every 5 to 10 matches. Bell or Cook will not be considered great because its the conditions they are familiar playing to from their childhood, English conditions are not same as sub-continental.

  • on November 12, 2011, 21:07 GMT

    Steyn is miles ahead of any other fast bowler going around these days. The England unit is good but take swing out of the equation and the likes of Anderson gets whacked all over the park which was very evident in the last WC. Steyn with his pace and aggression is in any condition a threat to any batsman. Definitely the best speedster out there

  • OnlyKaps on November 12, 2011, 21:01 GMT

    Shoudnt the question be asked of the worlds batsmen instead ?

    Gavaskar has always mentioned Marshall, Roberts, Lillee , Holding ( he faced Imran, Snow, Thompson, and others at their best). Sachin has talked of Ambrose and Donald. Lara has several times spoken of McGrath, Donald , Akram and the former Windies quicks. I think Ponting and Dravid have also admired Donald and Ambrose and Akram

  • Chirs-Cry on November 12, 2011, 21:01 GMT

    If you talk about Great fast bowlers then from Asia the the first 3 names that comes to your mind - Imran, Wasim and Waqar. From Windies - Malcom, Holding, Roberts Ambrose and Walsh. From Aus/NZ - Dennis, Hadlee and Mcgrath. From SA - Donald, Pollock and Steyn. From Eng - Trueman, Anderson and Gough (my mind is playing with me, i cant think of any others !).

  • Chris_P on November 12, 2011, 20:52 GMT

    Of course, legends of the game who have participated at the highest level, played against the best and had the opportunity to speak with team members on their thoughts on other bowlers know nothing compared against couch viewers who have most likely never stepped onto a ground to play competitive cricket. Of course these guys know MUCH more about cricket than proven legends. Yeah right.

  • Chirs-Cry on November 12, 2011, 20:49 GMT

    Someone said Zaheer Khan "the most dangerous pace bowler at present" - If so, then how would you describe Steyn, Anderson, Gul or even Afridi for that matter ? I guess Dangerously dangerous !

  • Chirs-Cry on November 12, 2011, 20:41 GMT

    It is their personal views and liking, no one has the right to criticize them for what they like ! But we can surely agree/disagree on their selections. I respect their views but I dont agree with half of legends here. I believe that Lillee is not "forever", he was easily a great bowler but over the likes of Malcom, Wasim etc is just ones misconception. Although, for me, he is one the three complete fast bowlers in the history of cricket (other two being Wasim and Malcom). Currently, though, Steyn or Anderson are on the top, considering their recent performances (Anderson vs India or Steyn vs Aus). Amir/Asif could have easily been a selection for few, had they not self destruct but thats history. Hoping to see a new breed of young fast bowlers, specifically Junaid and Philander, to give Steyn and Anderson a run for their money. Morkel and Wahab will also be in the race and may the best one come on top.

  • BillyCC on November 12, 2011, 20:13 GMT

    A lot of people in this forum don't know much about cricket at all and fail to understand that certain circumstances in cricket are unfortunate. But this does not limit someone to not being the greatest. In the case of Lillee not playing many test matches in Asia, it was due to firstly the Australian Cricket Board at the time not scheduling many matches overseas against subcontinent opponents and injury. I think over Lillee's whole career, there were less than a dozen total opportunities to play tests in Asia and he ended up playing only a handful of those. What is indisputable is the fact that other cricketing greats say that he is the greatest. This testimony has infinitely more value than unknowledgable fans.

  • Jeptic on November 12, 2011, 19:56 GMT

    I simply cannot see why Lillee keeps getting picked. Any of the Fab Four from the WI or Wasim Akram is better than him. It is a WELL KNOW fact that after Lillee's first tour of the sub-continent, he conveniently can;t make it for subsequent tours because he was thrashed!!! The other pace bowlers like the WI ones, Styne, etc always tour....Lillee preserved his records by NOT touring the subcontinent....He is not even near the top five pace bowlers of all time!!

  • on November 12, 2011, 19:27 GMT

    Agree about Dale Steyn being the best of the current crop.

    But I rate Marshall and Akram above Lillee.

  • bumsonseats on November 12, 2011, 19:22 GMT

    just to add on to my message the best fast bowler was michael holding whispering death. some that were mentioned started of as pace bowlers then got to fast /quick bowlers other started as genuine quick but finished a slower version. mickey never did, he started fast and at the end he was still fast and new when to retire. he was the greatest. dpk

  • bumsonseats on November 12, 2011, 19:13 GMT

    well for a change no slagging off of jimmy anderson by the usual suspects. of the last 7 series played by england he missed one of those and played 1 test of a 3 series but was injured in the other 2 tests of that series. he took 92 wickets during those tests. not bad for a so called only take wickets on home soil. the best current fast bowler dale steyn, next young fast bowler to be up there steve finn at 22, any bowler that can bowl up to 95mph as he did in india must be in the current list. and young cummings if he can get past the stage of when his body stops growing. could be a real asset to the aussies. dpk

  • hhillbumper on November 12, 2011, 19:12 GMT

    It is an irony that the flat tracks of subcontinent are always raised when discussing how good bowlers are but when the issue is batsman we are told how difficult conditions are.In that case does that not mean that batsman in bowler friendly conditions such as UK SA and NZ should be rated higher.By that logic Ian Bell or Alistair Cook would be a current great.It is a daft arguement so lets see what happens.By the same score though how bad are said subcontinental bowlers who toured this summer in the UK.It is all a bit petty.Similar to the fact hat Hsarbhajan is comparitively useless away from India.

  • on November 12, 2011, 18:50 GMT

    anderson right? well send him to the sub continent and ask him to play atleast 10 first class matches and then if he picks up atleast 3 5frs only then he'll enter in my top 100.

  • Shan156 on November 12, 2011, 18:45 GMT

    Seems like lot of Indian fans are peeved that their greats are not mentioned in the list. First up, we should all accept that these guys know a thing or two more about bowling than us. When they say, someone is good, they must be really good. When you see someone like Glenn McGrath say that James Anderson is good, that must count for more than what someone like amitgarg78 says or thinks. Zaheer might be a great for Indian fans but the rest of the world don't think so. At best, he is a decent fast bowler but definitely behind Steyn, Morkel and Anderson.

    @Jaatitude, shame that you think Ishant and Sreesanth are worse than Boycott's mom. Lol. Performing in the sub-continent is not the only criteria for judging a fast bowler. IAmbrose has played only 6 tests for 18 wickets in Pakistan and SL and never played in India. How do you rate him so highly? Do you know that Anderson's stats are better than Zaheer's in India? First know the records before saying something.

  • hhillbumper on November 12, 2011, 18:35 GMT

    Zaheer Khan.You must be joking.Srinath was better than him.Wasim and Waqar are best sub continetal bowlers followed by Vaas.Marshall was sheer talent as was Donald.Ambrose,Walsh and Mcgrath were also top notch. Best English bowler will have to wait and see. Anderson is good but this is just opinion and not some nationalistic fervour.Guess it just shows how lucky we were to have the bowlers we used to have and guess we will have to see what comes next.Would a real quickie want to play tests these days when they can earn more just playing 20 20.

  • on November 12, 2011, 18:01 GMT

    Why no body is telling about our Zaheer Khan. I think, if he is fully fit, then the most dangerous pace bowler at preseent. Del Stayen or others may have more speed than him, but Zaheer can purchase from any wicket throughout the world

  • on November 12, 2011, 17:50 GMT

    It was sad that Kapil Dev was not discussed by even Hadlee. Playing his all the cricket in Cold and moist conditions made him look stronger and even others too. Can we talk about the Bowlers from subcontinent Like Kapil, Imran, Akram, Waqar, Srinath and Zak? To take 300-500 wickets and most of them in subcontinent where you keep on hurling the bowl and it will not bounce above waist from 2nd days on wards. These guys took most of their wickets here unlike West Indians and other English, OZ, SA and NZ bowlers. They were the Kings of swing. I do respect Lilee, Mc Grath, Ambrose and Steyn, But still to perform In Subcontinent as a fast bowlers is significant. Shane warne should also be considered as the best spin bowler the same way, instead of Murli or Kumble.

  • MrGarreth on November 12, 2011, 17:38 GMT

    I absolutely agree with khan71 that the pick of the best bowlers should have probably come from the great batsmen. Most of these lot wouldnt have that sort of perspective on what type of bowler is most difficult to face but the batsmen surely would. Even if you havent faced that particular bowler, if you are a seasoned batsmen you would be able to pick what youd hate to face.

  • on November 12, 2011, 17:18 GMT

    Dale Steyn is head and shoulders above the rest... just take statistics alone, he is not in this generation and is actually above bowlers in the previous two decades as well... he is a statistical annomaly... and you want to talk about conditions, Steyn's average and SR in India is better than he' career... he hasn't bowled in NZ yet (God help them when he does) and only played 2 Tests in England, the 2nd at Leeds got a 4-for and another 2 to win SA the Test by 10 wickets... the only place his suffered was in SL when he toured in 2006 before he became a force in Int'l Cricket...

  • on November 12, 2011, 17:11 GMT

    East or west Bond is the best! My inspiration!

  • gov544 on November 12, 2011, 17:08 GMT

    I my book Malcom Marshall was the greatest fast bowler ever, hr got wickets in India against India in Pakistan against Pakistan Leelee on the other hand never played in Pakistan or india

  • khan71 on November 12, 2011, 16:52 GMT

    should ve asked the batsmen.........lillee couldnt buy a wicket in the sub-continent....just think how many wickets imran, wasim, kapil etc would have had if they had played about 50 tests in english & aus conditions....to be ranked the greatest one has to perform everywhere...its just like in bradmans case...didnt play against half the world...yet labelled as the greatest...

  • focus16 on November 12, 2011, 16:47 GMT

    What about the WI greats of yesteryear. Wesley Hall &Gilchrist?

  • on November 12, 2011, 16:30 GMT

    i dont think anderson is a fast boler he struggles to reach 140kph.. steyn is the best fast bowler in recent times with out any doubt.... Brett lee is also good, but his name has not been discussed at all.... on a whole marshall, holding, akram and garner are my best fast bowlers team....................

  • amitgarg78 on November 12, 2011, 16:29 GMT

    Anderson? Amongst all time greats? You were joking. Right?

  • stevejohnson1010 on November 12, 2011, 15:33 GMT

    What about Allan Donald folks? I remember Shoaib telling Tendulkar being afraid of his bowling, it wasn't correct, as the only bowler who got Tendulkar out more times than he scored runs of him was Donald!

  • rugveda78 on November 12, 2011, 15:20 GMT

    If out-and-out pace (to strike terror) is the criterion, i would want to add a few names here, Allan Donald, he was terror with new ball in his younger days and was skilful too. One more name people keep forgetting, Waqar Younis, along with Wasim Akram, he tortured many batsmen with his inswinging yorkers to clean up the innings. If we have to stress more on fast yet skillful bowling, we do have other names too, like Michael Holding, Joel Garner, Shaun Pollock, Kapil Dev and Zaheer Khan, to name a few. All these were too good bowlers and you could call them masters of the art. But to be honest, no one wrapped up the innings like Waqar and Wasim did. You could wake them up from deep sleep, give them the ball and ask to bowl yorkers. I am sure they could have done that without much efforts, especially Wasim Akram. For me, he is the best left-arm bowler cricket world has ever seen (and Glen McGrath, the best right-arm bowler). Sadly, we don't have any such masters from India.

  • Kiwi-Jake on November 12, 2011, 14:50 GMT

    Just defending Hadlee here. In New Zealand we don't get South Africa home games on TV. We get England home games, Aussie home games and wherever NZ are playing, so Hadlee doesn't see much of Steyn and co, whereas he would have been seeing a lot of Anderson at home recently, where he strives. Don't bash the man for his opinion.

  • rkannancrown on November 12, 2011, 14:49 GMT

    It appears the greats are also more fond of their own countrymen. Having seen bowlers from the late seventies, to me the most exceptional was Richard Hadlee who could make the ball talk even in India. In 88, the only Indian batsmen who could withstand his spells were Siddhu & Srikkanth. The way he toyed with the so called technically better batsmen - Vengsarkar, Ravi Shastri, Azhar & arun Lal - was fascinating to watch. A pitythat nobody picked him, apart from fellow New Zelander Shane Bond.

  • Bilal94 on November 12, 2011, 14:33 GMT

    This is a sorry age for fast bowling.I think there isnt a single quickie who is good enough lace the boots of any of the greats.Anderson is only good in tests where there is assistance from the pitch while Steyn is good with the red ball only.Gul and Malinga are good in limited overs cricket but ordinary in the longer version.The only hope of fast bowing Aamer who could have been the best turned out to be corrupt.

  • Praxis on November 12, 2011, 14:31 GMT

    Who is better right now than Dale Steyn? I am no great or a professional to have such level of insight but the stats suggest that Steyn is head & shoulder above all the Jimmys & Broads available. Guess that McGrath is so fond of English quicks just cuz they beat AUS last ashes. Only opening pair recently who could've been better than Steyn & Morkel was Amir & Asif, but we all know where they are now. Also nobody mentioned Waqar or Donald, why?

  • since7 on November 12, 2011, 14:29 GMT

    Hadlee is the only one who names anderson above steyn which is shocking.Feel he doesnt watch much cricket nowadays!.Rest all make ambigious remarks!

  • since7 on November 12, 2011, 14:26 GMT

    There's a big difference between being a favourite bowler and the best bowler.Seems like the bowling 'greats' gave their opinions in a casual manner.Nothing else can explain anderson being chosen over steyn.Its shocking for anderson is less than 25 % of what he is when conditions dont favour him.Steyn is not just a present great.He is well on course to being an all time great.The greats talk too much about the present era being batting friendly and that batsmen average more than they should do,etc,etc.If thats the case what about steyn who has had to bowl on docile wickets and still has a SR which is better than all post war bowlers.He is simply outstanding.

  • loung_singh on November 12, 2011, 14:16 GMT

    wasim akram and glen mcgrath were d greatest bowlers of past generation.akram was magical and could change any match on any pitch in a span of few balls...mcgrath doesnt had d mercurial swing of akram but his control was impeccable.i ve seen d best of batsmen including prince lara ,tendulkar,kallis etc surrendering tamely against mcgrath...1999 world cup in a super six match vch both india n australia needed 2 win mcgrath got tendulkar in d first over...again in 2003 final when tendulkar was in form of his life mcgrath got him in d first over match over...same was repeated in 2004 champions trophy match..dat is greatness of any player above any stats d performance against d best on d grandest of stages wht a player...

  • StarsnStumps on November 12, 2011, 14:06 GMT

    I'm surprised no one mentioned imran khan or botham especially imran was phenomenal against the windies at their best

  • vrc2003 on November 12, 2011, 13:52 GMT

    So many greats mentioned Lille's name but un fortunately I have not seen him. To me my favorite's are Malcom Marshal & Ambrose, Because I saw batsmen in those times feared to face these two . They created terror in batsman mind. Literally they shivered to face these two great fast bowlers. I don't think any other fast bowler created that much fear in batsman mind.

  • Percy_Fender on November 12, 2011, 13:52 GMT

    The greatest fast bowlers were Malcolm Marshall,Wasim Akram, Dennis Lillee,Richard Hadlee,Andy Roberts,Curtley Ambrose and Glenn Magrath. But Dale Steyn will probably go on to better all of them or at least be equal in every respect to Malcolm Marshall who was simply the greatest. He never needed any out of the trade tricks like tampering with the ball for success.I have not named some others only because they have indulged in this enethical practice at some time or the other in their careers.Someone said that theatre is necessary to qualify as a great. While it does indeed add to the viewing pleasure, I am not sue that this is needed. A Walsh with his steely stare was perhaps just as effective as a Lillee with his bandana and below the earth level appeal.marshall was not too theatrical either.I am surprised that some people have found Anderson worthy of falling in this pantheon of greats. He was pathetic in the subcontinent and needs to take along England for his wickets.

  • on November 12, 2011, 13:30 GMT

    To me a fast bowler comes with a fast bowler's attitude. I rank Akram, lillee, hadlee, waqar, mcgrath, imran not to forget the great windies of 70s and 80s, marshall, garner, holding. Fast bowlers are ones who can blow away teams in a spell, not like keeping length and line. They shud be more agressive than ordinary bowlers. The great players havent mentioned some key names in the list.

  • on November 12, 2011, 13:26 GMT

    Yip I have to agree with Birbeck Joe !!!! there is no debate when choosing the best fast bowler currently, Dale Steyn is with no doubt the best, the only people that would disagree, probably have some loyalty issues. And I am South Africa!!!

  • Amol_Gh on November 12, 2011, 13:23 GMT

    A crucial factor: The 1990s had either bowler-friendly or at least fair pitches. But the last gone decade has seen batsmen-friendly feather-beds due to the somehow false belief that public loves to see bowlers getting hit to all directions. Considering that Dale Steyn is very, very, very special. Anderson always takes almost ***20*** more tests to catch up with Steyn. Plus Anderson is yet to perform outstandingly like Steyn here on the sub-continent. From the 1990s, I loved Wasim Akram and Alan 'White Lightning' Donald who made the balls recite poetry and chin-music respectively. McGrath, FOR ME, wasn't even a fast bowler.

  • bbpp on November 12, 2011, 13:12 GMT

    Non-cricketing biases aside, Lillee, Marshall & Wasim seems to be the top dogs by consensus. Ambrose, Holding, Donald, Mcgrath, Trueman, Donald and less that a handful of others appear to be interchangeable with any on that list but for my money I'd take Imran & Hadlee any day over those named above. Many would rate them as good as any and what they added with the bat was a huge bonus for any team.

  • Vikramaditya100 on November 12, 2011, 13:04 GMT

    Dennis Lillee may be a great bowler but on any day I would pick any of the WI greats (Holding, Roberts, Marshall, Ambrose etc.) or Pak bowlers (Akram, Imran).

  • puskas on November 12, 2011, 12:59 GMT

    Can't decide between George Lohmann and S.F. Barnes as best ever. Amazing no-one English mentioned between them and Jimmy Anderson - but surely Trueman and Tyson are worth a mention if this is all time, not "since the advent of cable TV". Where are Lindwall, Miller, Hall, Griffith, Adcock? This game has history before Sachin!

  • on November 12, 2011, 12:49 GMT

    Its surprising to see that not a single mention of Shaun Pollock has been made. It's like he has been totally forgotten. Is it because of his lack of pace towards the end of his career?

  • on November 12, 2011, 12:46 GMT

    Btw, this selection is not the best out there. The bowlers have just analysed their compatriots, what about those who played them? I think the same question should be asked by current and past great batsmen.

  • Trapper439 on November 12, 2011, 12:43 GMT

    After seeing both of them at their peak, I would rather have spent a round in the ring with Mike Tyson than faced a spell from Curtley Ambrose without a helmet. That guy was just scary.

  • Zahidsaltin on November 12, 2011, 12:38 GMT

    Do not compare Imran, Wasim and Waqar to others as these three had to earn most of their wicket on flat dead subcontinental pitches where as people like Lille chose not to play on batsman friendly wickets. He did try though and got 6 wickets in 4 matches (SL and Pakistan) at an average of 68.In the same 3 matches in Pakistan where he has 3 wickets at 101, Imran played two of them and got 6 wickets at 24. It tell it all.

  • on November 12, 2011, 12:37 GMT

    Aren't their three guys who call Anderson the best, and three who think Steyn is the best. Then why the discrimination in the title of the article? I guess NG added his own vote too.

  • on November 12, 2011, 12:29 GMT

    I have seen many fast bowlers. Lillee, Marsghall, Boyce, Garner....they all are different in their own way.

    we need to look at stats.

  • Zahidsaltin on November 12, 2011, 12:25 GMT

    Lille was only good while playing at fast swinging wickets. He did not like to play in subcontinent where he only played 4 matches and took 6 wickets at an average of 68. Consider if Lille was born in India and had to play 2/3 of his matches in subcontinent?? He played 90% of his matches on heavily bowling friendly wickets. In all he played 17 matches against Pakistan and his average for those 71 wickets is 31. No way he can be better than Marshall, Hadle, Imran or any other great. Geatest bowler has to be MARSHALL followed by WASIM.

  • Aussasinator on November 12, 2011, 12:19 GMT

    While choosing the best fast bowler can be subjective and country centric at times, I am glad to see the near unanimity on Wasim Akram and Lillee. I cannot remember anyone who wasnt scared of Akram's ability or felt comfortable facing him. He was hit around the least of all the bowlers.

  • StJohn on November 12, 2011, 12:15 GMT

    Only one of the greats surveyed - Sir Richard Hadlee - expressly said Jimmy Anderson is currently better than Dale Steyn. Most of the others say Dale Steyn is the current best. I agree that he is - for example, the Test rankings bear that out. But for all those comment writers who keep sniping about what Sir Richard Hadlee said: the majority agrees with you. So case closed and get over it.

  • AlanHarrison on November 12, 2011, 12:09 GMT

    I'm also very surprised at McGrath's implication that of current bowlers Bresnan and Broad are better than Steyn, who does not deserve a mention because current bowlers 'have not played enough Test matches to really qualify for the best fast bowler grade'. Firstly Steyn has played nearly five times as many tests as Bresnan (47 to 10). Secondly Steyn's bowling average is about ten runs better than Broad (22.9 to 32). Thirdly, Steyn has the best strike rate in test history (i.e., all the way back to 1877) of any bowler who has taken a minimum of 200 test wickets (better incidentally than McGrath's): check this on statsguru if you don't believe me. I can only assume that McGrath (who notably does not mention Allan Donald either) simply does not want to give any credit to any South African bowler at the moment because of sour grapes and embarrassment about the way in which they skittled his team Australia the other day.

  • on November 12, 2011, 12:06 GMT

    for all you knocking Jimmy Anderson, here's some stats for you, since taking over from Freddie as the leader of the England attack, he's taken 100 test wickets in 21 tests at an average of 24.55 against all opposition...rather impressive don't you think??!! and these stats compare favourably against any fast bowler from the modern era....Believe me, McGrath is not known for heaping praise on England players, so when he does, it's worth standing up and taking notice, I think he knows more about fast bowling than anyone who cares to post on these boards!!!....

    A very good article and interesting to see fast bowlers views on their peers....For me? Hadlee, Lillie, Thommo, McGrath, Ambrose, Akram, Holding & Marshall were the best I've ever seen

  • thebolivian on November 12, 2011, 12:01 GMT

    A lot of people lack basic reading comprehension skills. the players weren't asked who were the best? - they were asked who was their favourite?

    anderson is probably marginally more skilled than steyn as a bowler but has less pace and so steyn always has the advantage.

  • AlanHarrison on November 12, 2011, 11:59 GMT

    Well, I should probably defer to the opinions of the practitioners of the art, but I am frequently surprised that so many people rate Lillee higher than Malcolm Marshall. In the above it seems only to be the ex-West Indies players who rate Malcolm Marshall, while the white fast bowlers almost all mention Lillee. Yet not only is Marshall's record better than Lillee's in terms of average and strike, but while Lillee took almost no test wickets outside of England and Australasia, Marshall succeed all around the world, notably in India, a hard place for fast bowlers at the time, where he had a fantastic series in 1983-4. Also I'm a bit surprised noone mentioned Imran Khan, Waqar Younis or Kapil Dev (perhaps because they didn't ask anyone from the subcontinent). (Imran also has a better average than Lillee, incidentally, and Waqar has a better average and strike rate.)

  • on November 12, 2011, 11:40 GMT

    Birbeck Joe... i would agree with you that shane bond has not fullfilled his potential... he was superb but didnot last long... even brett lee is good and accurate. you cant even forget kapil dev he was to good and accurate at that time. For me world's best fast bowler at present is STEYN with out any doubt. Anderson struggles to reach 140kph he cant be considered as fast boler and in ODI's he gives many runs...Malcolm marshall and Joel Garner are the icons of fast bowling....

  • kabe_ag7 on November 12, 2011, 11:27 GMT

    Steyn is head and shoulders above Anderson in every respect. Way better statistics, absolute menace, amazing to watch, looks like getting a wicket every ball and a great guy in general. He is such a huge threat even on sub-continent pitches where Anderson chooses to skip the tours. I sometimes wonder how South Africa don't win every single test they play when they have someone like Steyn (and Morkel).

  • shivendash on November 12, 2011, 11:23 GMT

    One name that was really the best one was IMRAN khan who bowled like a tiger

  • shivendash on November 12, 2011, 11:21 GMT

    I think the all time best fast bowler was Anil kumble who bowled at 120K. Can anyone bit it? From the present lot, Sreesanth, Nehra and Praveen Kumar can just tear away any batting line up when playin against women. I am also ROFL

  • KiwiRocker- on November 12, 2011, 11:17 GMT

    I bet there will be protests in India as no one mentioned Kapil Dev who was Indies's quickest fast bowler...Although Anil Kumble on his days ( Generally with help of Indian umpires) could also bowl very fast. Back to the article: Like few other readers have mentioned that It is surprising not seeing Waqar Younis mentioned around. Waqar Younis had 370 odd wickets in fairly few test matches. From memory his strike rate was far superior than the likes of Wasim and McGrath etc...James Anderson is a useless bowler outside England. Waqar Younis nailed everyone everywhere. Dale Steyn is the same. Pakistani batsmen took him to cleaners in UAE. This is a major flaw for these so called champion bowlers. Among the current lot there is no one as good or as complete as were likes of Wasim, Waqar, Imran Khan, McGrath, Marshall, Ambrose, and Holding etc. Its bit like so called God of cricket India who only scores at selective places...No wonder he will never be as good as J Kallis and King V.Richards

  • on November 12, 2011, 11:15 GMT

    Nobody asked any of you to post who you think is the best. LMAO

  • ElPhenomeno on November 12, 2011, 11:12 GMT

    Stats may tell you whatever, but for my money, no one comes close to Wasim Akram for sheer skill. He could do it all, reverse swing both ways, cutters both ways, natural swing both ways, deadly yorker, nasty bouncer and a very deceptive slower ball. I have been watching cricket 40 years and feel I have seen most. Many were very fast, faster than Akram. Holding, lillee et al. But none had the variety and control Akram had. Perhaps the guy who came closest was Ambrose. Today, I like watching Donald Duck bowl. He is the best.

  • bMike on November 12, 2011, 10:43 GMT

    I've seen many batsmen hitting sixes for Steyn and Anderson but not for Malinga. Marshall, Akram & McGrath were the best in past meantime Malinga is the current best though he retired from test cricket recently.

  • Stark62 on November 12, 2011, 10:30 GMT

    There are only three fast bowlers through out history: Malcolm, Wasim and the rest!

    Those two are by far miles ahead of the pack and no one will ever come close to those two, ever.

    I can't separate between Wasim and Malcolm as to who is no. 1 but both are very unique and amazingly talented.

  • unathi_jp on November 12, 2011, 10:24 GMT

    I'm disappointed in some of the opinions of the so-called greats. I wouldn't comment on who's the fast bowler of all time because I've not watched cricket for so long, however I can comment on who's the current best fast bowler. "He is probably the No.1 fast bowler at the moment, followed by Steyn and Morne Morkel" really!!!! That's shocking. Steyn is without the shadow of doubt the best fast bowler of this era. He gets fiive-fer and ten-for in asian conditions, he has the best strike rate of all current players who have 240 wickets or more. He's the 20th person ever to get a career rating above 900. What has James Anderson done that make him so great?

  • on November 12, 2011, 10:23 GMT

    @bathurst

    That's right, I'm sure you know more about fastbowling than Sir Richard Hadlee.

    You might be right about Steyn and Morkel being better, but you have absolutely no right to call the comments of one of the all-time greats "a joke", if a man who knows says it, there's a reason for it.

  • on November 12, 2011, 10:21 GMT

    To me, Marshall was the most 'lethal'. Lillee was the best 'role-model'. Akram was the utmost 'magical'. And, Steyn is currently the 'supreme'. Just visualize a dream-bowler with Marshall's movement and deception, Lillee's run-up and action, Akram's swing and control.

  • Beertjie on November 12, 2011, 10:15 GMT

    Thanks, Nagraj. Over half a century of watching I can't pick one. I agree most with the comments of @harshthakor. My top dozen: Marshall; Lillee; Holding; Akram; Steyn; McGrath; Roberts; Hadlee; Imran; Ambrose; Waqar; Garner. I've seen them all. To make a bakers, I'll add one I didn't (Ambrose was named after him: Lindwall).

  • mrhamilton on November 12, 2011, 10:14 GMT

    Im really stunned Waqar younis and allan donald arent mentioned much here. Sure Waqar had a relatively short and sweet prime(1989-1996) and did tail off quite badly the rest of his career in terms of pace, but even the waqar of 1998-2002 was express by todays standards.oh how we were spoiled for high quality genuine fast bowling in the 70's- 90's. Apart from steyn and morkel today who is there. Anderson? a guy who becomes a second rater in australia? Zaheer khan is a skilled accomplished guy but he would be called a medium pacer in the 80's. 4 me the best were marshall, followed by holding,mcgrath, younis, akram and allan donald

  • MrGarreth on November 12, 2011, 10:07 GMT

    I know Im a Saffer and therefore might be inclined to bias but... wow. Jimmy Anderson over Dale Steyn? Really? I know Anderson has been superb over the last few years but Steyn looks like the only bowler of the current crop that will have the type of figures that the old guard have at the end of his career, which is astounding in todays mostly batsmen friendly pitches. Even if you excluded figures, just... watch him bowl! I know these guys are well respected quickies but jeez... if it wernt for the 2 SA guys, Rice and Procter, Steyn would have only received one vote. For me its almost unquestionable that he is the best quickie going around.Glenn McGrath loves building up the pommies so I'll ignore him. Also have to question why Waqar Younis is snubbed so often. I rate him as up there with Marshall and Lillee. I think its because of Akram's heroics that people forget how often Waqar was the superior seamer.

  • AdoSR on November 12, 2011, 10:00 GMT

    Can't fault the opinion of champions. I'm a little surprised that Wasim wasn't mentioned more often. I asked myself who I'd most like to see bowl again. The answer to that would be Thompson. Not the best all round bowling, but simply terrifying - the epitome of fast bowling.

  • on November 12, 2011, 10:00 GMT

    To me great fast bowling requires a sense of theatre, to intimidate the batsman. Any discussion of the great fast bowlers I've seen (this would have to exclude Larwood, Hall, Lindwall, Miller, Tyson and others) has to start with the West Indies. Specifically, Marshall, Garner, Holding and Ambrose. I would then add Lillee and McGrath, Akram, Waqar and Imran, and Hadlee. Thommo and Proctor were one offs (due to unusual actions), but scary. Best run up: Holding. Best overall: Marshall or Lillee.

    Unfulfilled potential award (not his fault): Shane Bond. Sorely missed.

    Don't see why there's a debate about current bowlers. Dale Steyn is miles ahead of anyone else at present (and I'm English).

  • on November 12, 2011, 9:25 GMT

    So quick comparison - Steyn 47 tests, 244 wickets, average about 23, strike rate under 40. Anderson, 63 tests 240 wickets (less wickets in over a third more test matches), average over 30, strike rate over 50.

    Are these guys rating Anderson above Steyn trying to make everyone laugh??? Made me laugh for sure!

  • on November 12, 2011, 9:01 GMT

    RIDICULOUS! Lilee has a pathetic average in Asia... On the other hand, I would go with Waqar all time and Steyn current!

  • on November 12, 2011, 8:39 GMT

    how come nobody voted for waqar younis? he had a tremendous strike rate!

  • teo. on November 12, 2011, 8:38 GMT

    Personally find it VERY difficult to decide on a player I have not seen.. from those I have, Wasim and McGrath were spectacular, and Donald was the perfect aggressive bowler. Right now, Steyn is without a doubt the best quick.

  • on November 12, 2011, 8:16 GMT

    stopped reading after "He is probably the No.1 fast bowler at the moment, followed by Steyn and Morne Morkel.". what a joke

  • on November 12, 2011, 8:15 GMT

    Shane Bond had lot of career left in cricket, one of the best bowlers in recent times. retired too early...loss to NZ team and cricket lovers...

  • on November 12, 2011, 7:51 GMT

    Great Article!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • harshthakor on November 12, 2011, 7:48 GMT

    Dennis Lillee was the most classical pace bowler of all while Malcolm Marshall posessed deliveries in his armoury which no bowlers had.Marshall's banana swing,and shooters that doubled their speed after their impact on the ground were unique as well as his skidding bouncer.Imran Khan is very close as he championed the cause on docile sub-continent tracks and was the best pace bowling performer against the West Indies.The pace bowler who resembled Lillee most was Andy Roberts,the most versatile of all West Indian paceman.For accuracy Garner and Ambrose were the greatest paceman.Hadlee was the best on a green top but was not as skilful as Lillee or Imran on flat tracks.

    In the modern era Dale Steyn is the ultimate champion who obtains pace and swing on the most docile of tracks.His stats record is in the Marshall or Hadlee class.

  • Shoobhit on November 12, 2011, 7:44 GMT

    Nice cherry-picking, subjective though. The application of word "all time" itself is fraught with subjective concessions, as it forcifies the observor to be distinctly mindful of those who preceeded his viewing time.

  • nzcricket174 on November 12, 2011, 7:44 GMT

    Dale Steyn is the best fast bowler right now...Anderson is good but you only need to see video and stats of both to prove Steyn's worth. If Anderson does amazing in the UAE I may change my mind but Steyn has got wickets and sometimes destroyed line ups on sub continent pitches.

  • cricketcrazyyy on November 12, 2011, 7:37 GMT

    To me Malcom Marshall is alltime best and then comes Lillee, Holding, Roberts, Wasim Akram, Hadlee, Donald, Mcgrath.

  • on November 12, 2011, 7:35 GMT

    My own vote for the all time best fast bowler goes to Malcolm Marshall, who played with great success in the sub continent which Lillee did not, barring three forgettable tests in Pakistan in 1980. Macko had a front on action with which he swung both ways at lightning pace, something West Indians could not do often. Plus he did not have the benefit of height and was only 5"8. So his achievement of 376 wickets in 81 tests at 20.94 would rate the highest in my book. Was a good bat as well - struck a strokeful 92 against India at Kanpur, the same match where his fiery pace saw Gavaskar's bat fly out of his hands. The current favourite is Steyn but hey there are not too many good quicks who are statistically strong. I would have liked to see Jerome Taylor or Jermaine Lawson play more tests, but they are injury prone. Maybe Zaheer rates a close second, with his immaculate swing and cut. Siddle and Hilfenhaus are pedestrian.

  • on November 12, 2011, 7:35 GMT

    O my God how can you forget Waqar Younas how??????????? Great fast bowler.

  • rahulcricket007 on November 12, 2011, 7:23 GMT

    CURRENTLY MY FAVOURITE IS STEYN . BUT MY FATHER'S FAVOURITE IS TRUEMEN

  • _NEUTRAL_Fan_ on November 12, 2011, 7:17 GMT

    Lol even the former players show some bias. The NZ's like Hadlee, the Ashes players like Lillee and the West Indians like Malcom or Holding. Still, some great names there and I agree with Andy, there is only ONE current and that is Steyn. Lee a close 2nd (1 day records boost him).

  • harshthakor on November 12, 2011, 7:13 GMT

    For the top spot it is a photo finish between Dennis Lillee and Malcolm Marshall.Both created prodigious swing,in addition to control and pace.Since he bowled to better opposition and made a greater impact in matches Lillee wins my vote.Closely behind in order were Hadlee,Imran and Glen Mcgrath.No pace bowlers posessed Lillee and Marshall's agression.For pure bowling skill the closest to Lillee and Marshall was Wasim Akram,arguably the most versatile paceman of all .Wasim could be devastating on the flattest of tracks with his variations.For control Hadlee and Mcgrath were ahead of everyone,with Hadlee bearing the brunt of an attack morte than any great pace bowler ever.In Ananth Narayan's analysis Hadlee and Imran edge out Marshall and Mcgrath and have better match performances.

    For sheer skill the 5 best genuine paceman were Akram,Marshall,Lillee,Lindwall and Andy Roberts.In his time great batsman like Gavaskar and the Chappells thought Andy Roberts was the most lethal of all.

  • zahidnasim799 on November 12, 2011, 7:07 GMT

    There is no Imran Khan No Wasim Akram No Waqar Younas No Sarfaraz Nawaz So i did not agree with them

  • bigdhonifan on November 12, 2011, 6:58 GMT

    My all time favorite..... the only Pakistani I like on the earth!! WASIM AKRAM the LEGEND!!!

  • PierreC on November 12, 2011, 6:58 GMT

    I can't believe so many of these so called greats actually picked james anderson over dale steyn. Anderson's bowling record is absolute tripe compared to steyn's...oh and courtney walsh's picks are just laughable. Has he seen any cricket since he retired?

  • smalishah84 on November 12, 2011, 6:46 GMT

    These are the kind of pieces that make me want to come back to cricinfo again and again. The live match updates of late have been very slow and I am thinking of switching over to some other websites whose commentary and ball by ball updates are much quicker.

  • on November 12, 2011, 6:39 GMT

    Mike Holding was the best in my opinion. You could watch him all day long and not get tired. Rolls Royce of fast bowling.

  • smudgeon on November 12, 2011, 6:32 GMT

    Unexpected how highly rated Anderson is by some of the greats of bowling, but not surprising.

  • BoonBoom on November 12, 2011, 6:13 GMT

    Why no one has Srinath and Prasad as their all time favourite and Sreesanth as current favourite? Lolzzzzzzzzzz

  • donda on November 12, 2011, 6:09 GMT

    My all time favorite is Wasim Akram because he was Wizard and Genius. Marshal, Ambrose, Lillee, Imran were greatest. Imran because of his super fitness in greatest in cutter ever.

    I think Waqar younas at his heights from 89 to 94 was the best thing ever happened to cricket during that time but he lost it after too many injuries. That's why Wasim Akram ruled after that. But still Wasim Akram is my all time best bowler because he can bowl 60 different deliveries in 10 overs. Awesome. Also I don't want to play these three bowlers at all. Ambrose, Walsh and McGrath because they can bowl good length balls whole year.

  • on November 12, 2011, 5:28 GMT

    Where Is Express Pace Baller Munaf Patel figuring??

  • RandyOZ on November 12, 2011, 5:15 GMT

    No surprise to not see an Indian in sight. 10 bucks says they'll flood the comment list though with the likes of Zaheer and Ishant. HAHA at least it will make me laugh.

  • jonesy2 on November 12, 2011, 5:07 GMT

    morkel? nobody said anything about the overrated morne morkel so why is he is the picture?

  • Naikan on November 12, 2011, 5:03 GMT

    Thanks Nagraj, it was wonderful to read the interviews of these great cricketers. However with all respect to your efforts, I feel conclusion is flawed. Normally peers are biased of those they idolised or been in greater touch with and rarely clinical. Instead great Batsmen's opinion might have been closer to the truth. I mean only two bowlers mentioned Akram. I agree Lillee is a great bowler, yet he fared poorly outside Australia, England & NZ (like home). He managed only 6 wickets averaging 90 in 5 tests in WI, Pakistan and SriLanka!! He missed India - a death bed for fast bowlers!! So I feel their rating of Lillee is emotional and a result of his intimating personality. I would put Akram, Marshal, or for that matter Mcgrath and Lindwall ahead of him. They avearged better than Lillee and had noteworthy performances in the sub-continent. Of the current choices, it is a no brainer - Steyn has taken more wickets than Anderson playing 25% lesser tests, & excellent in the subcontinent.

  • johnathonjosephs on November 12, 2011, 5:00 GMT

    Malcolm Marshall> Richard Hadlee> Wasim Akram>Dennis Lilee> McGrath> Walsh/Ambrose > Shane Bond> Steyn> Anderson McGrath was definetely on something to include Tim Bresnan in his list.....

  • indianpunter on November 12, 2011, 4:57 GMT

    Akram never gets the credit he deserves. To me, he is up there in the top 2/3. if only pakistan had better slip fielders..his tally would have looked even more impressive. Making the ball talk, that was what Akram did day in day out.. as an indian supporter, he used to give me the shivers every time he came on to bowl against us. Against all other teams, i just loved the way he chew them up and spat them out.

  • on November 12, 2011, 4:57 GMT

    surprising that not Allan Donald did not get a mention. He was special...

  • AdityaMookerjee on November 12, 2011, 4:43 GMT

    My favorite bowler is Allan Donald. I like all the Indian bowlers, because I find application of skill, they try to be skillful. Be it Mr Kapil Dev, Srinath, Sharma, all of them. Pakistani's and the Australians, do it naturally. They are skillful, but it is not apparent to them, or so it seems, when they are bowling. The Indian bowlers struggle, with themselves. I am a great fan of Irfan Pathan, which I had not mentioned earlier in the post. Perhaps, the thought of applying skill is not important. One has to be skillful, anyway, when one is bowling. Even if no one thought about it, they would bowl the out swinger, and discover it. That is how the out swinger was discovered, and also reverse swing, I presume.

  • on November 12, 2011, 4:42 GMT

    these players are biased towards their countries. I think the question should be added of which other country they liked the bowlers

  • hris on November 12, 2011, 4:19 GMT

    whats wrong with u Glenn? How come u are praising the English bowlers.

    Glenn should be banned from talking to the media. He's been talking up this English setup recently. ggrrrhhh

  • on November 12, 2011, 4:08 GMT

    It has to be Del steyn.He is the only guy who has taken wickets on sub-continental pitches.Look at his average and his strike rate.James anderson is good,but he has hardly taken wickets on flat asian tracks.Look at his average,he simply is not that good.

  • Tendulkars_Tennis_Elbow on November 12, 2011, 3:53 GMT

    what??? no TendulkaR??????

  • on November 12, 2011, 3:17 GMT

    we you pick 8 fast bowlers of all time and u think there is not one from Pakistan give me a break. Cricinfo is messed up and it not even fuuny

  • on November 12, 2011, 3:15 GMT

    Amazing to see noone named Waqar, Imran or Sarfraz which shows how great bowlers they were that still their compatriots find it hard to name them. Just like Sachin never praising Lara. Also strange to see McGrath praising the all three Englishmen. Where are Steyns and Morkels in his favourites?

    Another strange thing is to not see the Kemar Roach named by anyone..First man ever to dismiss Ricky Ponting retired out and forcing him to wear elbow guard for rest of career

  • Jaatitude on November 12, 2011, 3:15 GMT

    Wasim Akram was Magician with the bal and the best world had ever seenl . I luv the aggression and attitude of fast bowlers and hence Steyn ,Pigeon , Donald,Ambrose stands out best in whatever cricket I hav watched in last 15yrs. Of the current lot Zaheer , Steyn are the best. Anderson will be hammered around all the corner if he plays on Sub Continent Tracks even Boycott mom can deliver in English condt.

  • SG70 on November 12, 2011, 3:02 GMT

    So the No.of Wkts that Lillee took in Asia is what again ... ? Yep not a whole lot more than ZIPPO . How does it matter ? Well it matters in the same way in which Asian Batsmen are judged based on their Averages in Eng/Aus/SAF .

    in b4 all hell breaks lose.

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • SG70 on November 12, 2011, 3:02 GMT

    So the No.of Wkts that Lillee took in Asia is what again ... ? Yep not a whole lot more than ZIPPO . How does it matter ? Well it matters in the same way in which Asian Batsmen are judged based on their Averages in Eng/Aus/SAF .

    in b4 all hell breaks lose.

  • Jaatitude on November 12, 2011, 3:15 GMT

    Wasim Akram was Magician with the bal and the best world had ever seenl . I luv the aggression and attitude of fast bowlers and hence Steyn ,Pigeon , Donald,Ambrose stands out best in whatever cricket I hav watched in last 15yrs. Of the current lot Zaheer , Steyn are the best. Anderson will be hammered around all the corner if he plays on Sub Continent Tracks even Boycott mom can deliver in English condt.

  • on November 12, 2011, 3:15 GMT

    Amazing to see noone named Waqar, Imran or Sarfraz which shows how great bowlers they were that still their compatriots find it hard to name them. Just like Sachin never praising Lara. Also strange to see McGrath praising the all three Englishmen. Where are Steyns and Morkels in his favourites?

    Another strange thing is to not see the Kemar Roach named by anyone..First man ever to dismiss Ricky Ponting retired out and forcing him to wear elbow guard for rest of career

  • on November 12, 2011, 3:17 GMT

    we you pick 8 fast bowlers of all time and u think there is not one from Pakistan give me a break. Cricinfo is messed up and it not even fuuny

  • Tendulkars_Tennis_Elbow on November 12, 2011, 3:53 GMT

    what??? no TendulkaR??????

  • on November 12, 2011, 4:08 GMT

    It has to be Del steyn.He is the only guy who has taken wickets on sub-continental pitches.Look at his average and his strike rate.James anderson is good,but he has hardly taken wickets on flat asian tracks.Look at his average,he simply is not that good.

  • hris on November 12, 2011, 4:19 GMT

    whats wrong with u Glenn? How come u are praising the English bowlers.

    Glenn should be banned from talking to the media. He's been talking up this English setup recently. ggrrrhhh

  • on November 12, 2011, 4:42 GMT

    these players are biased towards their countries. I think the question should be added of which other country they liked the bowlers

  • AdityaMookerjee on November 12, 2011, 4:43 GMT

    My favorite bowler is Allan Donald. I like all the Indian bowlers, because I find application of skill, they try to be skillful. Be it Mr Kapil Dev, Srinath, Sharma, all of them. Pakistani's and the Australians, do it naturally. They are skillful, but it is not apparent to them, or so it seems, when they are bowling. The Indian bowlers struggle, with themselves. I am a great fan of Irfan Pathan, which I had not mentioned earlier in the post. Perhaps, the thought of applying skill is not important. One has to be skillful, anyway, when one is bowling. Even if no one thought about it, they would bowl the out swinger, and discover it. That is how the out swinger was discovered, and also reverse swing, I presume.

  • on November 12, 2011, 4:57 GMT

    surprising that not Allan Donald did not get a mention. He was special...