Posts Tagged "Richie Benaud"

On a warm summer’s day in England in 1993, one of the best players of spin in the English team, Mike Gatting, would leave an innocuous looking delivery pitched outside his leg stump, to glance back with disbelief a moment later and see his off stump dislodged by the prodigiously spinning ball from Shane Warne.

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It is the midst of the Chappell-Hadlee trophy and 36 years since the Greg-Trevor Chappell underarm ‘incident’.

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With India having played their 500th Test match at Green Park in Kanpur, the time is apt to relive a significant result achieved by them at this venue more than half a century ago.

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I was one of the kids who grew up in the glory of West Indies cricket in the 80s – starting as an enraptured five year old witnessing the ferocity of the 84-85 team.

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I will forever be in debt to Richie Benaud – legendary cricketer, legendary commentator-writer, an iconic Australian, and one helluva good bloke.

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If the 1960-61 Test series between Australia and the West Indies is considered among the most exciting of all time, the 2015-16 Windies-Australia series appears to be among the most lacklustre.

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Prime ministers and cricket legends paid tribute to iconic player and commentator Richie Benaud on Wednesday night as a book about his illustrious life was launched at the SCG.

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His classic impersonations made the original Channel Nine cricket commentators household names, but now, Billy Birmingham has announced his ’12th Man’ franchise will end with one final album on November 27.

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It was somewhat ironic that on the day Australia collectively mourned the loss of the voice of summer, the voice of two states’ winters showed telltale signs that age was also catching up with him.

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They were born almost 60 years apart, yet died within months of each other, both at the hands of the game they loved: one felled by a ball, the other by the long-term effects of not wearing a hat.

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The legendary Richie Benaud, who passed away aged 84 on April 10, was one of the most influential figures in post-war cricket. He was a champion leg-spinner, an inspirational captain, an eminent writer and arguably the finest commentator of our time.

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Leigh Matthews was once described as having ‘no natural predators’ in Aussie Rules. The same description could be applied to Richie Benaud.

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In the mid to late 1970s, the sound of summer for many young teens was Sherbert, Skyhooks, and a little later The Angels and Australian Crawl.

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The game speaks of eternal beginnings – and never endings. Cricket, by its very creation, suggests time aplenty, with kept fields, ponderous sessions and tea breaks.

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All-conquering Test and one-day captain Michael Clarke credits the late and great Richie Benaud for creating the winning culture that has led to Australia becoming the most dominant force in world cricket.

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If you were picking the second biggest Australian cricket personality behind the incomparable Don Bradman, the late, great Richie Benaud deserves it.

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As the sun rises today over Coogee’s Wedding Cake Island, this nation will be one soul less. One icon less. One legend less. One very nice fella less.

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At tea on the last day of the tied Test in December 1960, Richie Benaud and Alan Davidson were sitting with their pads on outside the dressing room at the Gabba with the future of the match in their hands.

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Australian bowling legend Shane Warne has hailed Richie Benaud as a “legend on all levels” and thanked the cricket icon for acting as a mentor to him throughout his career.

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The cricketing world and Australia lost a true legend as Richie Benaud passed away in his sleep, aged 84.

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