Wellington, May 20: Martin Crowe, widely considered as the finest ever batsman to have played for New Zealand has announced his comeback to first class cricket. He is 48 and it's been nearly 16 years since he quit from the Test Arena.
The legendary Kiwi's decision to comeback is partly inspired by fellow legends club-mate Sourav Ganguly and Shane Warne. He was quoted by Cricinfo as saying, "Hey! If Ganguly can do it, anyone can do it!" Shane Warne has been amazing and as a spin bowler he can probably bowl like that for a long time to come. Gilchrist has kept himself fit. It's human nature to feel that you are top of things."
Informing that he was inspired by former New Zealand internationals Adam Parore and Mark Richardson, he said, "Parore is about to climb Mount Everest and Mark Richardson is about to do four marathons this year. I realised I needed to something that wasn't just about getting fit but oriented towards something I would have fun doing. My friend texted me: 'Why don't you try knocking off 20,000 first-class runs? You have 392 to go.' And I thought that's the perfect answer. Why don't I take a bat in my hand and see what happens when summer comes around. At the same time it could be fun because here in New Zealand the batting is in a little bit of decline and it will be a good way to see where the techniques are at."
Crowe, who quit international cricket due to a dodgy knee, in the interview with cricinfo, remembered the physical troubles he had faced due to the injury. He said, "By the time I was 40, I couldn't even walk. I had a major operation called an osteotomy; it gives you 15 years of interim relief until you are old enough to have an artificial knee. I have felt good with this operation in the last 4-5 years. I have been playing regular golf and walking with no discomfort. I just feel I need to do a little bit more as I am lacking focus on something. So I have come up with this."
Earlier, on May 18 he tweeted of his intentions to make a comeback. He had written, "Call me mad, but just having an urge to put the pads on, done (sic) the headband, take guard & bat in a first class match. Would Akld (Auckland) consider it?", before adding, "Need a challenge to get fit at 48."
In an illustrious career with New Zealand cricket, Crowe played 77 Tests with an impressive average of 45.36 with 17 centuries.