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Top 5 Greatest Bowlers In Australia Cricket History

Bowling remains the key factor in the Australian team victories over the span of years. Let us take a look at the top 5 greatest bowlers in Australia cricket history.

Last updated: 01.10.2020
Top 5 Greatest Bowlers In Australia Cricket History | Sports Social Blog

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All through the long history of Cricket Australia, there have been some most prominent bowlers ever created by Australia who have gone to rule the game single handedly.


Bowling remains the key factor in the Australian team victories over the span of years. Either it was Jeff Thomson-Dennis Lillee or Brett Lee-Mitchell Johnson there is by all accounts the no match of these gifted players.



In any format of a game the pace attack of Australian team is perilous. From the fast bowling talents in modern-day cricket or in the past too Australian have been lucky enough with the best bowlers like Charlie Turner and Bill Johnston. 

Having said, let us take a look at the top 5 greatest bowlers in Australia cricket history:


Dennis Lillee:


The Man With the Plan to destroy the batting line-ups with his extreme pace. Very few bowlers in history who could match up the calibre of this speed star. Known for his ‘never-say-die’ attitude.  


1972, Ashes Series 31 Wickets at an average of 17.67 Statement in his style – A Very Best Has Arrived. But prone to injuries Dennis Lillee was not the same after he returned to cricket from his stress fracture which had happened in the early years of his career.


The right arm fast pacer featured in 70 Tests took 355 wickets at an average of 23.92 numbers don't do justice to players like Dennis Lillee. He was the bowler of rare breed on whom the captain can rely on its accuracy and impact. Just imagine playing a little longer. Dennis Lillee could have ended many players' careers.


A legitimate Game-Changer who has intimated even the best of the batsman for entirely a decade when bowling seems to be the most dangerous thing in cricket.


Jeff Thomson:


Menacingly Fast – Dennis Lillee. This Tag was perfectly Justified by the bowler like Dennis Lillee.


Jeff Thomson alongside Dennis Lillee in 70s and 80s was one of the greatest bowling pairs ever in the history.


Just before the great Ashes series in 1974/75, Jeff Thomson made the statement that cleared his intentions –


"I enjoy hitting a batsman more than getting him out. I like to see blood on the pitch"


England batsman were waiting for him to get on field to give a reply in their style. But what's next complete different scene as English batsman were humiliated and injured badly by Jeff Thomson who took 33 wickets on tour and was just there to broke Arthur Mailey’s record of 36 Wickets.


It was the same Ashes Series When Sydney Newspaper came up with interesting cartoon Caption of Dennis Lillee and Jeff Thomson –


“Ashes to Ashes, dust to dust, if Thomson don't get ya, Lillee must”.


Australia won the Ashes Series by 4-1 in the end but world has witnessed two of the extreme fast bowlers have arrived.


The right arm fast bowler featured in 51 tests and took 200 wickets again these numbers don’t do justice to player like Jeff Thomson who can bowl real fast which was next to impossible to played against. Another great bowler whose career was cut short due to the injuries in his career but the impact he had left was just unmatchable till the time he was the part of great Australian team.


Charlie Turner:


And next one is without a doubt the “Terror Turner”. Born in New South Wales, Turner wanted to be a cricketer from his childhood but time was not in his favour as it demands a job to survive when turner moved to Sydney. Before moving to Sydney in 1886/87, Turner early attempts was not good in cricket at first-class level. A Banker turned bowler – it was the complete redemption story.


Charlie Turner in his 7 first-class games grabbed the attention by picking up 70 wickets. The season made him a star and Turner never looked back making his way to the national side. Turner relied on his accurate line and lengths to bamboozle the batsman rather than over the speed.


The right arm fast bowler featured in 17 tests and took 101 wickets at an average 16.53 and he was the only so far in the history to arrive the fastest to 50 wickets in 6 games. Charlie Turner was the first Australian bowler to arrive at the 100 wickets mark in Test cricket history.


Bill Johnston:


Wisden Cricketer of the year 1949. One of the greatest left-arm pacer produced by Australia. But Bill had the ability to bowl slow-left arm orthodox too. He was quite a supportive bowler for Keith Miller and Ray Lindwall. But there were the times when Bill Johnston single handedly dominated the game and outshone the others.


Since his test series against India in 1947 where he took 16 wickets at a swaggering average of 11.37 just after he was a Complete different and regular bowler in the Australian side.


The left-arm pacer featured in 40 Tests took 160 Wickets at an average of 23.91 numbers are enough to define the calibre of a player like Bill Johnston when pitches were uncovered and more hostile.


When Bill Johnston could broke many records at a high point during his career a knee injury forced him to take retirement in 1955.

Clarie Grimmett:


Wisden Cricketer of the year 1931. Born in New Zealand, and played for Australia. In the early days for his career he had played for Wellington when New Zealand was not a Test playing nation.


But later in 1914 he moved to Australia which was a sporting superpower and at last played for Australia as one of great leg-spin bowler and man behind the idea of flipper delivery in cricket was started by “Clarie Grimmett”. Started his career at the age of 33 and played till 44 although he had a great last series against South Africa where he took 44 wickets but he was dropped after.


Clarie Grimmett featured in 37 tests took 217 wickets at an average of 24.21 and the fastest to arrive at 200 wickets in 36 tests a record held by him for 82-long years which was later broken down by Yasir Shah.


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