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The Athletic Profile of Fast Bowling in Cricket: A Review

Johnstone, James A.1; Mitchell, Andrew C.S.2; Hughes, Gerwyn2; Watson, Tim3; Ford, Paul A.4; Garrett, Andrew T.5

Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: May 2014 - Volume 28 - Issue 5 - p 1465–1473
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e3182a20f8c
Brief Review

Abstract: Johnstone, JA, Mitchell, ACS, Hughes, G, Watson, T, Ford, PA, and Garrett, AT. The athletic profile of fast bowling in cricket: A review. J Strength Cond Res 28(5): 1465–1473, 2014—Cricket is a global sport played in over 100 countries with elite performers attracting multimillion dollar contracts. Therefore, performers maintaining optimum physical fitness and remaining injury free is important. Fast bowlers have a vital position in a cricket team, and there is an increasing body of scientific literature that has reviewed this role over the past decade. Previous research on fast bowlers has tended to focus on biomechanical analysis and injury prevention in performers. However, this review aims to critically analyze the emerging contribution of physiological-based literature linked to fast bowling in cricket, highlight the current evidence related to simulated and competitive in-match performance, and relate this practically to the conditioning coach. Furthermore, the review considers limitations with past research and possible avenues for future investigation. It is clear with the advent of new applied mobile monitoring technology that there is scope for more ecologically valid and longitudinal exploration capturing in-match data, providing quantification of physiological workloads, and analysis of the physical demands across the differing formats of the game. Currently, strength and conditioning specialists do not have a critical academic resource with which to shape professional practice, and this review aims to provide a starting point for evidence in the specific area.

1Sport and Exercise Research Group, Department of Life Sciences, Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge, United Kingdom;

2Sport, Health and Exercise Research Group, School of Life Sciences, University of Hertfordshire, Hertfordshire, United Kingdom;

3School of Health and Emergency Professions, University of Hertfordshire, Hertfordshire, United Kingdom;

4British Olympic Association, London, United Kingdom; and

5Department of Sport, Health and Exercise Science, University of Hull, Hull, United Kingdom

Address correspondence to James A. Johnstone,

Copyright © 2014 by the National Strength & Conditioning Association.