Good fast bowlers say that, when they were young, bowling with pace was their passion. If you want to be really fast as a bowler look to build speed first and last.
After building genuine pace, it is important for you to perfect your bowling action. Anything lacking in bowling actions would not only make you lose control of your deliveries, it leads to injuries by putting extra stress on a player’s body. Anyone who has played cricket will tell you that changing your bowling action is hard. So it’s important that you stay on the right track from the beginning and develop a decent action which would allow you to bowl fast and achieve greatness.
Here are a few thinks you should look to do when you run in to bowl:
1. Measure Your Run-up
Carefully measure your run-up, no one but you can judge what length would be suitable for you. If you can bowl quick with a short run-up like Wasim Akram then run in from a short run-up. However if you feel that your action requires a run-up like Bret Lee, so be it. What is not acceptable is that you running in to bowl every ball with a different length of run-up, if you do that you won’t be able to control your bowling
2. Tilt Back and Lean Forward while Delivering a Ball
If you want to bowl with pace, it is important that you have the right momentum. The impetus your action will be the extra pace you will be able to generate. Take a swift run in, and just when you are about to deliver, tilt back. Then immediately drive forward when you deliver the ball. By doing this, you should be using your chest muscle and upper body strength. This would generate a lot of pace and a swift follow through.
3. Bring Down the Front Arm Straight Across
This reduces stress from your back. If you bring down your non bowling arm straight across, it allows you to deliver the full thrust your body without putting extra pressure on any other body part. Bowlers who are late in bringing down their front arm exert pressure on their shoulder blades, and those who bring it down away from the body put killing stress on their back. This again, is not an effective technique of bowling quick but also for a smooth action. Little things like this prolong a bowler’s life.
4. Jerk the Wrist Forward at Point of Delivery
Give your wrist a jerk at the last moment of releasing the ball. This will give you extra pace, and depending upon your grip also some movement off the seam. If you are tall quick, jerking the wrist will also give you some extra bounce.
For more tips of bowling fast get the online coaching course "How to Bowl Faster" by Ian Pont, author of the Fast Bowler's Bible and fast bowling coach to Bangladesh.