Thatscricket - News - Bradman without a peer then and now: Hadlee

Published: Monday, February 26, 2001, 23:53 [IST]
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Wellington: The late Sir Donald Bradman kept the game simple and his philosophies on batting are still valid today, New Zealand's finest cricketer Sir Richard Hadlee said Monday. Bradman died Sunday in Adelaide, aged 92. The Don was without peer in his time and even today. He demonstrated wonderful skills and very simple batting. I read his coaching book many years ago and his approach to batting is still applicable today. He was legendary, an icon of the game and the greatest cricketer ever,'' he said. Hadlees father Walter, a former New Zealand test captain, said one of his most poignant memories of the master batsman was seeing him in action for South Australia against the tourists in Adelaide 64 years ago. The Don played in that game and he was 11 not out at the end of the first day after we batted. As 12th man I was free to look around the next morning to see the crowd pour in to watch Bradman bat. Jack Cowie got him out straight away for 11 -- caught behind by Eric Tindall. I was outside the gate when the word went around the queues he's out, he's out.' I would say two-thirds of them went home.'' Hadlee met Bradman in Sydney en route to the 1949 tour of England and relished his brief encounter. He was a legend or use any term you like but he was certainly the greatest living Australian and the greatest batsman the game has ever known. That can not be questioned. He was a genius. He scored 974 runs in his first test series in England, averaged 99.94 in tests and scored a hundred once every third innings ... what more can you say?'' As a player Bradman came to New Zealand once on his way to Canada in 1930 with an Australian side captained by Arthur Malley but he never played a shot. The game was played in Wellington but Bradman didn't play but I believe went fishing which was a bit of a sore point with the public. That was the only excursion he had to New Zealand in his playing days.'' Hadlee was convinced Bradman would be a handful for bowlers had he batted in the modern era. All at New Zealand Cricket, and I'm sure all lovers of the game, will be saddened to learn of the passing of Sir Don Bradman. He was undoubtedly the world's greatest batsman, he was also a true gentleman and epitomised all of the values which have been long associated with our game -- honesty, integrity, humility. The game is greater for him playing it.'' Former New Zealand captain and New Zealand Cricket administrator Graham Dowling said he met Bradman at his house in Adelaide on one trip. Cricketers the world over have valued so highly meeting with the great man. It is terribly sad to hear this news. He was an absolute legend and the cricket world will be in deep shock. He was not only the greatest player of all time but he followed up his career by serving as an administrator and chairman of the Australian Cricket Board. His views on cricket issues were always widely sought and valued because he had the interests of the game at heart.'' Dowling said Bradman was one of the greatest figures of all time and no one would will ever equal his test statistics. He has had a long innings but no one ever had the magnetism that he possessed. He brought thousands into the gate to watch and when he was out people went home again.'' Copyright AFP 2000Extras:
Bradman: End of a legendary era

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