A fearsome Mitchell Johnson was bowling as fast as 155km/h at the Gabba, veteran Australian wicketkeeper Brad Haddin says.
Johnson claimed nine wickets in the 381-run win in the first Ashes Test and, winding up with his lethal short ball, left England batsmen shaken.
Haddin kept to the 32-year-old left-armer in Australia's recent one-day series in India where he was clocked at more than 150km/h and, despite the speed gun in Brisbane showing Johnson not quite tipping over that mark, the gloveman said it was as fast as he had seen him.
''In India, he was hitting 154km/h and it actually felt quicker than that here, or at least as quick as that,'' Haddin said on Monday. ''It's as good and as fast as I've seen him since I played with him 18 months ago. You get an idea by where we were standing. We were so far back but we still didn't have much time if they were going to nick one. It was very, very good pace.''
Haddin and Johnson combined for a match-turning partnership with the bat in Australia's first innings at the Gabba, and both were among the runs in the second innings, but it was the paceman's brutality with the ball that England may find difficult to forget.
The two are long-time teammates - Johnson was in the line-up when Haddin made his Test debut in the Caribbean in 2008 - and the 36-year-old said he would not want to be batting against him. ''We faced him [at training] leading up to the Test match when he was trying to get ready. It is definitely no fun in the nets,'' Haddin said. A mustachioed Johnson channelled his mentor Dennis Lillee with his sheer aggression in Brisbane and intends to debrief on the performance with the legendary fast bowler after returning to his adopted home town of Perth.
Johnson worked closely with Lillee during this comeback from the freak foot injury that sidelined him two summers ago and continues to consult him. The short ball was a raging success at the Gabba but Johnson will want to formulate a plan for next week's second Test in Adelaide, where he probably will not get the same assistance from the pitch.
''I got a text from him last night,'' Johnson said of Lillee. ''He wants to have a chat, so we'll definitely catch up at some stage. Whether it's over a coffee or over the phone, we'll definitely have a chat.
''He sent me a message about getting a gold chain and getting a bit of chest hair. I can't grow too much hair there, that's the only problem.''
Having rediscovered his hallmark ferocity, Johnson said he was not intending to reflect on his Brisbane exploits for long.
''I definitely can get better, you're always looking to improve,'' he said. ''I always remember Glenn McGrath saying that to me when I first came into the squad. You're always looking to get better and he was one of the greatest of all time.''
Johnson said he enjoyed the banter between teams.''I love getting into a bit of a scrap and so do a few of their boys,'' he said. ''Jimmy Anderson loves getting into it.''