Men who made cherries talk.

Rocket RajaStarred Page By Rocket Raja, 10th Jul 2012 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Celebrities>Sports

Making inanimate objects talk is a wizard's trait. Here is a tribute to wizards on the cricket pitch who gave the 'cherry' a voice.

The fab four

During the 1990s, four stars named Dizzy, Binga, Pidge and Warnie rose from down under to remind ‘The Invincibles’ of their proud cricketing history half a century back. It was then batsmen started fearing the likes of Lee, McGrath, Gillespie and Warne. No, it wasn’t the mortal fear that plagued the feet of batsmen whilst facing the towering Windie quicks, but a different kind of jitter. Wizards wearing the same jersey wove spells around the batsmen, forcing nicks and castling stumps.

If wickets were meant to be plucked by patience, acumen, pace and guile, they had them all. If McGrath took to seaming pitches as a fish takes to water, Shane Warne could spin the ball a mile on dusty subcontinent pitches. The ball pitched and beat the bat in two entirely different lines. Jason Gillespie showed the world the importance of a support bowler in a bowling attack in spite of lacking the habit of dominating test series that his counterparts possessed.

Vital leg of the Australian Stool

If Adam Gilchrist and Mathew Hayden chased down smallish ODI targets within thirty overs and nullified meagre fourth inning targets with arrogant shots, or the fact that Steve Waugh and Ricky Pointing were role models for good captaincy, it was partly because their counterparts were bamboozled by quality pace bowling and hallmark spin bowling. Though Stuart MacGill was one of the widest turners of the cricket ball as well, Warne’s stats showed why spin bowling had more to it than just spinning the cherry. Had MacGill been born another day in another continent, he would have been treasured, but in Australia, there was no competition for the Sheikh of Tweak.

Blond Bamboozlers

It was not long before a blond haired express from New South Wales burst into the scene, ushering a new era of pace bowling. He consistently egged the speed guns to show numbers hitherto untouched. A non-exaggerated run up, a jump, the tuck of the right arm near his hip was all he needed to clock an excess of ninety miles. With his arrival, the bowling contingent boasted of role fulfilment. If Pidge played the role of a silent assassin, Dizzy’s support to him was rock solid. If Warne stole wickets with guile and spin, Binga’s sheer pace left the batsmen reeling. The Australian coffers were raining with wickets and they went on to complete a hat-trick of World Cups, a mean feat no doubt.

With some of the greats of the game guarding the stumps, bowling was never going to be easy. But in test matches when Warne came around the wicket to a right hander, it seemed impossible to decide whether to present your bat or pad to the ball. Dozens of videos stand testimony to this fact wherein batsmen look back sheepishly at their shattered defences for a second or two before making that long walk back to the dressing room.

The complete men

While Glenn McGrath could not boast of a ninety mile pace in his delivery, he defined precision in cricketing terms. It wouldn’t be wrong to rename good length as the Glenn Length. Such was the consistency in his length. He didn’t have to vary his length to question the batsmen for the simple reason that it was impeccable. Even the cricket ball lost its sheen after 30 overs, but Glenn hardly ever did. Those picture perfect nicks that were pouched by Gilchrist behind the stumps were innumerable and the famous spectacle of seven slips for his delivery was a treat to watch.

Gillespie showed why a team needed bowlers who could bat, rather than batsmen who could bowl.
McGrath stubbornly denied the ‘Pace’ school of thought and defined what a good length is.
If Warne couldn’t turn it, nobody could.
Brett Lee continues to be a kind man. He always has a gift for the batsmen on quick, bouncy wickets.

They proved pace bowling was not just about pace, and spin bowling had more to it than spinning alone.

They gave a voice to the cricket ball. They were truly men who made the cherry talk.


Ball, Bat, Bowled, Brett Lee, Caught, Cherry, Cricket, Fast, Glenn Mcgrath, Jason Gillespie, Keeper, Quick, Shane Warne, Spin, Tall, Test Match, World Cup

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author avatar Rocket Raja
A teenager with a wandering mind, restless fingers and loads of time. Hoping to do a good job.

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author avatar Ramalingam
10th Jul 2012 (#)

Excellent article in particular about the OZ fab 4.Thanks.

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author avatar Rocket Raja
10th Jul 2012 (#)

Thanks a lot sir!

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author avatar Pranav.R
10th Jul 2012 (#)

Nice work dude ! :)

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author avatar Mitra Varun
10th Jul 2012 (#)

A superb one AGAIN :) keep going

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author avatar Srivatsan
11th Jul 2012 (#)

nice one ...

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author avatar Rocket Raja
11th Jul 2012 (#)

Thanks guys :)

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author avatar Denise O
14th Jul 2012 (#)

Another well written piece. Congrats on the star page, it is well deserved. Thank you for sharing.:)

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