Fast Bowling: Classification by Speed


Fast Bowling

Fast Bowling
Fast Bowling, Cricvision

This post is dedicated to the Rockstars of the game, the Fast Bowlers. Fast/Pace bowling is one of the two main approaches of bowling in cricket. Spin bowling is the other one. Practitioners are known as fast bowlers or pacers. There are varieties in pace bowling as well. Bowlers categorized to their specific fast bowling technique, such as swing or seam bowler.

The aim of pace bowling is to bowl the cricket ball at high speed. Bounce and sideways movement through the air, make it difficult for the batsman to hit the ball cleanly. Pace Bowling is a very vast topic. Therefore I am going to write about its categorization in this post.

Categorization of fast bowling:

At his young age a bowler concentrate solely on speed. As pace bowlers mature they pick up new skills. They tend to rely more on swing or seam bowling techniques. Most fast bowlers specialize in one of these two areas. But as the age progresses they have no choice but to compensate with their speed.

A skilled pacer bowls a mixture of fast, swinging, seaming and cutting balls. This classification is based on the bowling speed of a bowler.

Classification of a fast bowler:

Type

Km/h

Mph

Fast

142+

88+

Fast-Medium

130 to 141

81 to 88

Medium-Fast

120 to 129

75 to 80

Medium

96 to 119

60 to 74

Slow

96-

60-

I know what you are thinking now. Yes, there is a difference between the terms “fast-medium” and “medium-fast”. For comparison, spin bowlers bowl at average speeds of 70 to 90 km/h (45 to 55 mph). Some bowlers have the ability to deliver a variation ball. This ball is faster or slower than their standard deliveries. They use it as a weapon to surprise the batsmen. It can cause some confusion as their bowling categories.

For example, Brett Lee can bowl his stock ball at around 145 km/h. It makes him a fast bowler. But he occasionally bowls a slower one at around 115 km/h. In the opposite, Shahid Afridi a spin-bowler has a quicker ball which can reach 134 km/h. However these deliveries are variations, so they rarely taken into account.

I hope you like my post. In my next post I will write about the techniques in pace bowling. Do comments and share your views. If you have any doubts regarding the post, I would be happy to answer.


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Comments 4

    1. Actually I took the reference from multiple sites including Wikipedia. Even your link shows the same sequence. As far as my research, my list is correct. But anyway, thank you for your comment.

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Fast Bowling: Classification by Speed

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