Difficult task, as there are plenty of factors to consider. But your task is to come up with a comprehensive top ten, and your reasons why.
1. Malcolm Marshall- succeeded in all environments, superb action, super quick, huge stamina, extremely economical and low SR, a bit mean with a great bouncer, basically the whole package.
2. Fred Trueman- The more I learn of Trueman, the more I admire him. Fast, accurate and with prodigious swing. Big hearted performer, first man to 300 test wickets.
3. Glenn McGrath- Probably not the most exciting, but a man who completely mastered his craft of fast/med bowling. Relentless accuracy and an uncanny habit of nipping it either way off the seam to find off stump or the edge.
4. Curtly Ambrose- Very similar to McGrath, maybe a bit quicker and scarier. Marked him a bit lower than McGrath because I felt he could be a bit lazy at times.
5. Richard Hadlee- Carried a crap NZ team for a long time, and almost singlehandedly made them competitive against anyone. A master craftsman who controlled the ball as well as anyone.
6. Ray Lindwall- A pure action and beautiful flowing outswing. Bowled in an era of great batsmen and proved to be one of the greatest ever.
7. Dennis Lillee- Once he'd have been my number one, but I think that 70s Australian jingoism taints the way I saw him. Nevertheless, a marvellous combative bowler, initially super quick, then famously remodelled his action to become a superb exponent of swing and cut.
8. Michael Holding- Aesthetically, the greatest of all. Smooth economical run and serious pace generated. His bowling to Brian Close after Greig's "grovel" comment is perhaps the best cricket thing to watch on YouTube.
9. Waqar Younis- I include Waqar as I think he was a remarkable bowler with incredible control of all kinds of swing. He was also blisteringly fast. I think he was better than Wasim, and I think judgements on Wasim are sometimes clouded because he was a left armer.
10. Imran Khan- The action, the leap and the charisma, and also the control and the pace. Early on he was very quick, and like others as he got older he became craftier, with great control and economy.
Very close- Andy Roberts, Wasim Akram, Allan Donald, Joel Garner, Allan Davidson.