Thursday, December 21, 2006

The Hollywood Pigeon

An era in World Cricket is about to come to an end. Shane Warne and Glenn McGrath, the greatest bowlers of their generation, have announced their retirement. I wonder if there has ever been a previous occasion, when two such towering giants from the same country, left the game on the same day. If anyone thought, Steve Waugh’s farewell at the SCG on 6th Jan 2004 was the ultimate emotional moment in Cricket, wait till 6th Jan 2007.

Warne and McGrath’s simultaneous farewell is sure to be part of Cricket folk lore for years to come. Cricket fans will forever marvel at the strange irony of a Champion, known for his countless variations and unpredictability on the cricketing field, and philandering habits off it, quitting the game on the same day as another, known for his unending accuracy and predictability on field, and commitment to his wife and family in personal life.
Cricket fans will forever remember Warne as being the one who ‘turned’ spin bowling on its head, and McGrath for targeting and capturing the greatest batsmen of his generation with monotonous regularity.

I have always maintained that Warne and McGrath have been the strongest pillars of this great Australian Test Team. Though Australia has produced many other world class bowlers like Jason Gillespie, Brett Lee and Stuart McGill during this period, it is these 2 who have given their attack the razor’s edge. Without them, the Aussie attack would almost be at par with the other bowling attacks in world cricket. One only needs to look back at the India-Australia series in 2003-04, to get a feel of what can happen to the Aussies once deadly duo is gone (For the uninitiated, Warne and McGrath missed that series played in Australia, which India almost won, but for a fantastic rear- guard action from Steve Waugh in the 3rd Test at Sydney.)
While I believe Australia will continue to dominate One-Day Cricket (where the 2 greats had limited impact), Warne and McGrath's simultaneous exit from the game could very well signal the beginning of the end for Australia's dominance of Test Cricket.

Guess who’s touring Australia next season..... India offcourse :-)


chaos said...

dada... what's relation with Australian cricket with Hollywood (or Hollywood Pigeon)!

Shubham said...

For the un-informed:-
"Hollywood" is Shane Warne's nickname
"Pigeon" is Glenn McGrath's nickname