England, the birthplace of cricket, has witnessed a lineage of express-paced bowlers who have left batsmen quaking with their sheer velocity. In this captivating list, we present the top ten fastest bowlers England has ever produced, their exploits etched in the annals of cricketing folklore.
Mark Wood 156.6 kmph (97.8mph)
Mark Wood is an English fast bowler who plays for England and Durham. He is known for his pace and swing, and he is one of the fastest bowlers in the world. Mark Wood’s fastest recorded delivery in international cricket is 156.6 km/h (97.3 mph), which he bowled to Asad Shafique in the second Test against Pakistan in Multan in 2022.
Wood made his Test debut for England in 2015, and he has since played 21 Tests, taking 71 wickets at an average of 32.23. He has also played 61 One Day Internationals, taking 141 wickets at an average of 26.08, and 28 Twenty20 Internationals, taking 46 wickets at an average of 21.82.
His rapid pace, combined with his remarkable agility on the field, sets him apart from his contemporaries. His impressive performance in the 2019 World Cup, where he consistently bowled above 90 mph, played a significant role in England’s triumph.
Devon Malcolm 141.6 kph (88.0 mph)
Devon Malcolm was known for his speed and aggression, and he was one of the few genuinely fast bowlers in England during the 1990s. Malcolm took 128 wickets in 40 Tests at an average of 37.09, and he also took 16 wickets in 10 One Day Internationals. He is best remembered for his performance against South Africa in 1994, when he took 9 wickets for 57 runs in the first innings. This helped England win the match and level the series.
The fastest ball ever bowled by Devon Malcolm is officially recorded at 141.6 kph (88.0 mph). This was achieved during a match against Australia in 1995. However, there have been reports that he bowled a ball at 156.1 kph (97.0 mph) in a match against Western Australia in 2000, but this has never been officially verified.
Malcolm retired from cricket in 2003, and he later worked as a commentator and coach. Hailing from Kingston, Jamaica, Devon Malcolm’s raw pace and blistering spells resonated with English cricket enthusiasts. His unforgettable nine-wicket haul against South Africa showcased his ability to wreak havoc, despite occasional struggles with fielding. He will forever be remembered as one of England’s fastest bowlers.
Harold Larwood 154.5kph (96mph)
Harold Larwood was a fast bowler from 1924 to 1938. He is considered one of the fastest bowler for England and his bowling was a major factor in his country’s Ashes victory in 1932-33. However, his bowling was also accused of being intimidation, and he was banned from bowling in Australia after the series. Larwood retired from cricket in 1938, and he later emigrated to Australia.
Harold Larwood was one of the fastest bowlers in cricket history. He was reportedly timed at 96 mph (154.5 kph) during the Bodyline series in Australia in 1932-33.
He died in 1995 at the age of 90. Despite playing a pivotal role in England’s resounding 4-1 Ashes victory, Larwood became a scapegoat due to the infamous Bodyline tactic. His lightning-fast bowling, which claimed 33 wickets at a staggering average of 19, tragically marked the end of his international career.
Jofra Archer 149.3 kph (93.3 mph)
Jofra Archer is an English fast bowler who plays for England and Sussex. He is known for his pace and swing, and he is currently the fastest bowlers of England. Archer made his Test debut for England in 2019, and he has since played 13 Tests, taking 58 wickets at an average of 24.45.
He has also played 16 One Day Internationals, taking 36 wickets at an average of 22.83, and 13 Twenty20 Internationals, taking 23 wickets at an average of 18.70. Archer is a key member of the England team, and he is expected to play a major role in the team’s future success.
Steve Harmison 144.9kph 90.6mph
Steve Harmison played for England from 2002 to 2009. He was one of the members of the “Fab Four” fast bowlers, along with Andrew Flintoff, James Anderson, and Stuart Broad. Harmison was known for his speed and aggression, and he was one of the most feared bowlers in the world during his peak. He took 226 wickets in 63 Tests at an average of 29.25, and he also took 121 wickets in 58 One Day Internationals.
His best recorded pace is 155.2 kph which helped him register his name on England’s fast bowler’s list.
He is best remembered for his performance against Australia in 2005, when he took 5 wickets for 33 runs in the first innings. Stephen James Harmison, with his unpredictable bowling style, struck fear into the hearts of batsmen. His extraordinary spell of seven wickets for just 12 runs against the West Indies at Sabina Park in 2004 remains etched in cricketing lore.
Joshua Tongue 144 kmph (90 mph)
The latest fast bowler in the ranks of English Pace attack is the 25-year-old Joshua Tongue. The fast bowler plays for Worcestershire County Cricket Club and was first introduced to the international cricket during the one-off test match between England and Ireland.
The bowler is said to have some speed and he used it to good use by executing the perfect bouncer plan of Ben Stokes, to claim his maiden fifer in his very first outing in cricket. Joshua Tongue has a pace in the mid 140s kmph which is somewhere around 90mph.
On the back of his amazing performance against Ireland, he was picked up for the Ashes squad as well. Considering the struggles that England’s swing bowlers had in the first game of the series, he was given the nod ahead of the experienced Chris Woakes and the bowler did not disappoint.
In his very first Ashes outing, he claimed three priced wickets of Usman Khawaja, David Warner, and the centurion Steven Smith. Joshua Tongue bowling speed was always in the early 140s kmph but at times he did hit the 90mph mark as well, making him one of the fastest bowlers for England.
Frank Tyson 142.4 (89 mph)
Frank Tyson was regarded as one of the fastest bowler ever seen in cricket. He played 17 Tests from 1954 to 1959 and took 76 wickets at an average of 18.56. He was nicknamed “Typhoon Tyson” by the press for his raw, unbridled pace.
In the 1954-55 season, Frank Tyson made an indelible impact when he sent Bill Edrich to the hospital with a fiery delivery. His subsequent exploits in Australia, including a magnificent six-wicket haul, showcased his sheer ferocity and catapulted him into cricketing stardom.
Tyson is said to have bowled a delivery at pace of 89 mph, making him end up with his name on England Fast Bowler’s list. Frank also claimed that he could have clocked the pace of 119 mph in right conditions. but sadly that could never be proved.
Fred Trueman played for Yorkshire County Cricket Club and England from 1952 to 1968. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest fast bowlers of all time, and he was nicknamed “Fiery Fred” for his aggressive bowling style. Trueman took 313 wickets in 68 Tests at an average of 21.43, and he also took 2,304 wickets in 602 first-class matches.
Although his pace was never recorded, he is still considered one of the best English bowlers. He is the only bowler to have taken 300 wickets in both Tests and first-class cricket. Trueman was a key member of the England team that won the Ashes in 1953, 1955, and 1961.
Fred Trueman, famously dubbed “The finest bloody fast bowler of England,” possessed an unmatched competitive spirit. Annihilating India’s batting order on his Test debut and culminating his illustrious career with 307 wickets at a remarkable average of 21, Trueman was a force to be reckoned with.
Andrew Flintoff 152kph (95mph)
Andrew Flintoff was an English all-rounder who played for England from 1998 to 2012. He was known for his pace, swing, and athleticism, and he was one of the most popular cricketers in the world. Flintoff took 219 wickets in 79 Tests at an average of 32.79, and he also scored 3,500 runs at an average of 31.77.
He is best remembered for his performances in the 2005 Ashes series, when he helped England to win the Ashes for the first time in 18 years. Flintoff retired from international cricket in 2012, but he continued to play county cricket for Lancashire until 2015.
Charles Kortright was an English fast bowler who played for Essex from 1889 to 1907. He is considered to be one of the fastest bowlers of all time, and he was nicknamed “The Demon” for his fearsome bowling. Kortright took 489 wickets in 170 first-class matches at an average of 21.05, with best innings figures of 8 for 57.
He was also a useful lower-order batsman, with 1,044 runs at an average of 17.61. Though never donning the England jersey, Charles Kortright’s first-class career for Essex showcased his exceptional skills. Notably, the legendary W.G. Grace famously lost two stumps to a Kortright delivery, solidifying his reputation as a fearsome fast bowler.
Simon Jones was a Welsh fast bowler who played for England from 2002 to 2005. He was known for his pace and swing, and he was a key member of the England team that won the Ashes in 2005. Jones took 18 wickets in 4 Tests at an average of 21, including 5 for 33 in the first innings of the final Test at The Oval.
However, his career was blighted by injury, and he was forced to retire from international cricket in 2005. Simon Jones’s extraordinary performances during the unforgettable 2005 Ashes series showcased his sheer speed and effectiveness. However, persistent injuries curtailed his promising career, leaving cricket fans yearning for more of his exhilarating spells.
England’s rich fast bowling heritage continues to produce remarkable talents who defy the limits of speed. These ten exceptional bowlers have left an indelible mark on the cricketing world, with their blistering pace and unforgettable performances. Their contributions serve as a testament to the enduring legacy of England’s fast bowling fraternity, inspiring future generations to push boundaries and redefine the art of speed in cricket.
Who is the fastest bowler in England cricket team?
Mark Wood is currently the fastest bowler in England’s cricket team. The player recently clocked the delivery of 156.6 kmph (97.8mph) against Australia in the Ashes, making him the fastest bowler for England.