Thatscricket - News - Aussie legend Bradman is no more
Published: Monday, February 26, 2001, 23:53 [IST]
Copyright AFP 2000Extras:
Bradman: End of a legendary era
Sydney: Sir Donald Bradman, acknowledged as the world's greatest ever cricketer, has died at the age of 92. Director of the Bradman Foundation, Richard Mulvaney, said the Test legend died Sunday. Sir Donald Bradman died yesterday morning, peacefully at his home, after a short illness with pneumonia,'' he said. I believe he died peacefully in his sleep and his family were there not long after. He was suffering from pneumonia before Christmas and was hospitalised for a short period, went home before Christmas and was really trying to recover,'' Mulvaney said. Wisden, cricket's authoritative almanac, last year named Sir Donald as the best cricketer of the 20th century. Sir Donald amassed 6,996 Test runs in 80 innings during the 1930s and 1940s at an unrivalled average of 99.94. He has been hailed by Prime Minister John Howard as the greatest living Australian. He played his last innings on August 16, 1948, at London's Oval cricket ground where the entire crowd cheered him as he walked to the crease. England captain Norman Yardley shook his hand and asked the players for three cheers. Bradman, who rarely gave interviews, denied he had tears in his eyes when England leg-spinner Eric Hollies bowled him for a duck second ball. If he had made another four runs he would have been able to retire with a Test average of 100. Sir Donald was born at Cootamundra in southern New South Wales on August 27, 1908, but grew up in Bowral, about 100km south-west of Sydney. His wife Jessie Menzies, whom he married in 1932, died in 1997. The couple had two children, John and Shirley. Prime Minister John Howard expressed the sympathy of the entire Australian nation over the death of Bradman. Howard said he had visited Sir Donald a little over a week ago in Adelaide. It was always going to be a shock when Don Bradman died because he has really been the most dominant figure in Australian life now for decades,'' he told ABC Radio. He was very ill, I saw him last Friday week. I paid a special visit to Adelaide to see him and I knew he was in very poor health.'' Howard said he had spoken to Sir Donald's son John Monday morning to express sympathy on behalf of all of Australia. And send our love to the Bradman family and record the appreciation of the Australian people for a wonderful life which not only gave this country and the world the greatest cricketer but, according to many people who compare these things, perhaps the greatest sportsman in 100 years.'' Howard said Sir Donald lifted the spirits of the Australian people during the depression of the 1930s. He was more than just a great cricketer and a great sportsman, he was a dominant Australian personality in a way that I don't think any other person has been in the last 100 years,'' he said. Howard said Sir Donald was an intelligent person who had a keen interest in the affairs of the world as well as sport. A person of quite restless intelligence and someone who preserved a great respect for the values that he thought were important about behaviour, not only on the sporting field but also in life generally,'' Howard said. Sir Donald had been increasingly lonely since the death of his wife Jessie who died in 1997. They had been married for 65 years and had lived in the same home in Adelaide which they built when they went there in the 1930s,'' Howard said.