"If I was asked to pick who was the better of the four of us, and I am on record as saying Imran because he was a versatile batsman, potent strike bowler and charismatic captain," he said. (Agencies)
"As a batsman, he could bat anywhere in the top six, sometimes in the top four, and play any type of innings depending on the circumstance of the game,” he said.
"As a bowler, he was a potent strike bowler ... His record suggests he was a fine bowler. He was also a charismatic person, a good and successful captain for Pakistan. He had a lot of respect, he had the package," Hadlee added.
However, Hadlee had a special place for former West Indian captain Sir Gary Sobers as an all-rounder.
"Sobers traditionally has always been regarded as the number one because people would pay to go and see him play. Very flamboyant, rhythmical batsman and bowler, fielder, captain. The whole package and the stats would back that up," he said.
Hadlee, nevertheless, regarded himself as the better bowler of the quartet, but admitted his weaknesses as a batsman.
"I scored less Test hundreds than anyone else, my batting average was lower than the others. So while I had some good innings, my batting was inconsistent. I wouldn't put myself in that same category, actually, but as a bowler definitely," he said.
Talking about the rivalry between the four, Hadlee said the 1980s was a fascinating era with the four all-rounders competing for a space of excellence.
"If I was asked to pick who was the better of the four of us, and I am on record as saying Imran because he was a versatile batsman, potent strike bowler and charismatic captain," he said.