Fourth Test, Melbourne December 28, 2006

Legend status

There have been a few legends involved in this game, but only two 'Legends'
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There have been a few legends involved in this game, but only two 'Legends'. The Australian and St George’s flags were escorted onto the field on Day One by local and visiting 'Ashes Legends'. In the baggy green and gold corner, Bill Lawry; from the Anglosphere, Dennis Amiss.

In the latter case, the word ‘legend’ must have been used in its liberal modern interpretation. No disrespect intended to a stout-hearted opening batsman – and one who was kind enough to give me his autograph at Kardinia Park in 1978 – but his main contribution to the Anglo-Australian game was the enrichment of Dennis Lillee’s legend: he made 305 runs in Ashes Tests at 15.25. Surely a greater Ashes Legend was on hand. Derek Pringle doesn’t look very busy at the moment.

Gideon Haigh is a cricket historian and writer

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • jasper on January 1, 2007, 10:18 GMT

    Nice one George/Spence: I have enjoyed all the A-miss chat as a 'legend'; there are two words on which i would like you reflect: Keith Fletcher. Did he not hold the record for the slowest ever Test century? Re. George's Aussie XI 'selection'you can't escape the thought that they would probably have walked into any England XI - and stayed there!

    Three more 'golden' names from England recent ranks: Chris Silverwood, Alex Tudor, and Tony Pigot.... oh the list goes on!

  • spence on January 1, 2007, 0:36 GMT

    george:good team my friend!!!I'd forgotten about steve smith;and watkins is a selection of genius.john dyson can be rested and replaced by ashley woodcock:remember him?? my bowling attack would revolve around the unique talents of tony dell,ross duncan and dave gilbert,with murray bennett as the spin king.how do you balance this collection of "legends"?simple:shove trevor laughlin in as your match winning all rounder... what's interesting about the initial reference to dennis amiss is that despite his failures against australia,he still has a test average of 46.check out his test figures against the west indies;that's why he was "trumpeted" by english fans.

  • George on December 31, 2006, 12:20 GMT

    In my opinion it would require an all-star Aussie Legends XI to equal Dennis Amiss alone. Something like: 1. J Dyson 2. S Smith 3. M Veletta 4. D Wellham 5. J Watkins 6. T Chappell 7. G Cosier 8. T Zoehrer 9. P McIntyre 10. C Matthews 11. G Campbell 12. M Lewis

  • jasper on December 30, 2006, 11:21 GMT

    Hi Spence: Maybe we could have an England XI v Australia XI playing for the Klunker Kup: three more for England: Chris Balderstone (now deceased) David Capel and Eddie Hemmings. To be selected as a Klunker selectors work on reverse-psychology: the worse they are the more likely they get selected. By the way do you think Ian Bell could be in the selectors thoughts?

  • peter warrington on December 30, 2006, 1:10 GMT

    Phil Carlson, John Maclean, Martin Kent, Trevor Chappell, Greg Campbell, Dirk Wellham, Richie Robinson as opener etc etc

    how did we go from Amiss, to Denness, BTW?

    for what it's worth, i think the point is that Amiss was trumpeted by the Poms in 74-5 as a genius - got smashed. and continued to, especially by Lillee, for the rest of the decade.

    nobody said that Phil Carlson was a genius - well, Phil might have, but that doesn't count.

  • spence on December 29, 2006, 9:29 GMT

    yeah,england have no ashes legends and australia has nothing but...can you remember such "legends"as ken eastwood,froggy thomson,wally edwards,gary cosier and andrew hilditch?? thought not... must agree about denness though;hopeless as a batsman and a captain.

  • jasper humphreys on December 29, 2006, 9:19 GMT

    What about more Great One-Day Wonders: three for starters Phil Newport, Mike Watkinson and Gavin Hamilton (the ultimate 'New Botham')..... any more? Jasper

  • Don on December 29, 2006, 6:12 GMT

    *chuckles* Quite funny! Ahh yes, Alex, I'd almost forgotten those gems, I especially remember Martin McCague ended up not getting a gig for WA so he could be thrusted into the bowling attack for England.

    PS No disrespect to Mark Lathwell but I had forgotten him but what a great memory you must have! :-)

  • Colin Capon on December 28, 2006, 23:18 GMT

    I have to agree that the selection of Mike Denness is absolutely ludicrous. I would suggest that there are bar staff in Australia who have performed better for England than he has but seriously I would suggest there are many retired english cricketers out here who would have fitted the bill. What a really silly thing to do

  • Alex (aussie in London) on December 28, 2006, 18:45 GMT

    Just think of who else England could claim as legends; Wayne Larkins, Eddie Hemmings, Martin McCague and who could forget Mark Lathwell (in case you did, he was plucked from obscurity in 1993 for 2 tests and never seen again). As for your comments Robbo, if we had the same system as England in 2005 with everyone giving the honours out, Damien Martyn would have to have a special charter flight from Hawaii in order for Johnny to give him an order of Australia for his contribution.

  • jasper on January 1, 2007, 10:18 GMT

    Nice one George/Spence: I have enjoyed all the A-miss chat as a 'legend'; there are two words on which i would like you reflect: Keith Fletcher. Did he not hold the record for the slowest ever Test century? Re. George's Aussie XI 'selection'you can't escape the thought that they would probably have walked into any England XI - and stayed there!

    Three more 'golden' names from England recent ranks: Chris Silverwood, Alex Tudor, and Tony Pigot.... oh the list goes on!

  • spence on January 1, 2007, 0:36 GMT

    george:good team my friend!!!I'd forgotten about steve smith;and watkins is a selection of genius.john dyson can be rested and replaced by ashley woodcock:remember him?? my bowling attack would revolve around the unique talents of tony dell,ross duncan and dave gilbert,with murray bennett as the spin king.how do you balance this collection of "legends"?simple:shove trevor laughlin in as your match winning all rounder... what's interesting about the initial reference to dennis amiss is that despite his failures against australia,he still has a test average of 46.check out his test figures against the west indies;that's why he was "trumpeted" by english fans.

  • George on December 31, 2006, 12:20 GMT

    In my opinion it would require an all-star Aussie Legends XI to equal Dennis Amiss alone. Something like: 1. J Dyson 2. S Smith 3. M Veletta 4. D Wellham 5. J Watkins 6. T Chappell 7. G Cosier 8. T Zoehrer 9. P McIntyre 10. C Matthews 11. G Campbell 12. M Lewis

  • jasper on December 30, 2006, 11:21 GMT

    Hi Spence: Maybe we could have an England XI v Australia XI playing for the Klunker Kup: three more for England: Chris Balderstone (now deceased) David Capel and Eddie Hemmings. To be selected as a Klunker selectors work on reverse-psychology: the worse they are the more likely they get selected. By the way do you think Ian Bell could be in the selectors thoughts?

  • peter warrington on December 30, 2006, 1:10 GMT

    Phil Carlson, John Maclean, Martin Kent, Trevor Chappell, Greg Campbell, Dirk Wellham, Richie Robinson as opener etc etc

    how did we go from Amiss, to Denness, BTW?

    for what it's worth, i think the point is that Amiss was trumpeted by the Poms in 74-5 as a genius - got smashed. and continued to, especially by Lillee, for the rest of the decade.

    nobody said that Phil Carlson was a genius - well, Phil might have, but that doesn't count.

  • spence on December 29, 2006, 9:29 GMT

    yeah,england have no ashes legends and australia has nothing but...can you remember such "legends"as ken eastwood,froggy thomson,wally edwards,gary cosier and andrew hilditch?? thought not... must agree about denness though;hopeless as a batsman and a captain.

  • jasper humphreys on December 29, 2006, 9:19 GMT

    What about more Great One-Day Wonders: three for starters Phil Newport, Mike Watkinson and Gavin Hamilton (the ultimate 'New Botham')..... any more? Jasper

  • Don on December 29, 2006, 6:12 GMT

    *chuckles* Quite funny! Ahh yes, Alex, I'd almost forgotten those gems, I especially remember Martin McCague ended up not getting a gig for WA so he could be thrusted into the bowling attack for England.

    PS No disrespect to Mark Lathwell but I had forgotten him but what a great memory you must have! :-)

  • Colin Capon on December 28, 2006, 23:18 GMT

    I have to agree that the selection of Mike Denness is absolutely ludicrous. I would suggest that there are bar staff in Australia who have performed better for England than he has but seriously I would suggest there are many retired english cricketers out here who would have fitted the bill. What a really silly thing to do

  • Alex (aussie in London) on December 28, 2006, 18:45 GMT

    Just think of who else England could claim as legends; Wayne Larkins, Eddie Hemmings, Martin McCague and who could forget Mark Lathwell (in case you did, he was plucked from obscurity in 1993 for 2 tests and never seen again). As for your comments Robbo, if we had the same system as England in 2005 with everyone giving the honours out, Damien Martyn would have to have a special charter flight from Hawaii in order for Johnny to give him an order of Australia for his contribution.

  • Robbo From Moe (Yarra in Exile) on December 28, 2006, 13:37 GMT

    I can't wait to get a spot in the front row for the Trafalgar Square Welcome Home party for the English Team. I've had some tomatoes sitting on my window sill since the start of the series, looking quite squishy by now. I can picture it now, arm in arm with my English friends singing "Ashes aren't coming home" and "We were smashed bya convict colony". Is it possible for the Queen to take those honours back she plastered over all and sundry after the last Ashes series? Sir Shane Warne, Viscount Glenn McGrath and Ricky Ponting, Duke of Launceston all have a decent ring to them don't you think?

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  • Robbo From Moe (Yarra in Exile) on December 28, 2006, 13:37 GMT

    I can't wait to get a spot in the front row for the Trafalgar Square Welcome Home party for the English Team. I've had some tomatoes sitting on my window sill since the start of the series, looking quite squishy by now. I can picture it now, arm in arm with my English friends singing "Ashes aren't coming home" and "We were smashed bya convict colony". Is it possible for the Queen to take those honours back she plastered over all and sundry after the last Ashes series? Sir Shane Warne, Viscount Glenn McGrath and Ricky Ponting, Duke of Launceston all have a decent ring to them don't you think?

  • Alex (aussie in London) on December 28, 2006, 18:45 GMT

    Just think of who else England could claim as legends; Wayne Larkins, Eddie Hemmings, Martin McCague and who could forget Mark Lathwell (in case you did, he was plucked from obscurity in 1993 for 2 tests and never seen again). As for your comments Robbo, if we had the same system as England in 2005 with everyone giving the honours out, Damien Martyn would have to have a special charter flight from Hawaii in order for Johnny to give him an order of Australia for his contribution.

  • Colin Capon on December 28, 2006, 23:18 GMT

    I have to agree that the selection of Mike Denness is absolutely ludicrous. I would suggest that there are bar staff in Australia who have performed better for England than he has but seriously I would suggest there are many retired english cricketers out here who would have fitted the bill. What a really silly thing to do

  • Don on December 29, 2006, 6:12 GMT

    *chuckles* Quite funny! Ahh yes, Alex, I'd almost forgotten those gems, I especially remember Martin McCague ended up not getting a gig for WA so he could be thrusted into the bowling attack for England.

    PS No disrespect to Mark Lathwell but I had forgotten him but what a great memory you must have! :-)

  • jasper humphreys on December 29, 2006, 9:19 GMT

    What about more Great One-Day Wonders: three for starters Phil Newport, Mike Watkinson and Gavin Hamilton (the ultimate 'New Botham')..... any more? Jasper

  • spence on December 29, 2006, 9:29 GMT

    yeah,england have no ashes legends and australia has nothing but...can you remember such "legends"as ken eastwood,froggy thomson,wally edwards,gary cosier and andrew hilditch?? thought not... must agree about denness though;hopeless as a batsman and a captain.

  • peter warrington on December 30, 2006, 1:10 GMT

    Phil Carlson, John Maclean, Martin Kent, Trevor Chappell, Greg Campbell, Dirk Wellham, Richie Robinson as opener etc etc

    how did we go from Amiss, to Denness, BTW?

    for what it's worth, i think the point is that Amiss was trumpeted by the Poms in 74-5 as a genius - got smashed. and continued to, especially by Lillee, for the rest of the decade.

    nobody said that Phil Carlson was a genius - well, Phil might have, but that doesn't count.

  • jasper on December 30, 2006, 11:21 GMT

    Hi Spence: Maybe we could have an England XI v Australia XI playing for the Klunker Kup: three more for England: Chris Balderstone (now deceased) David Capel and Eddie Hemmings. To be selected as a Klunker selectors work on reverse-psychology: the worse they are the more likely they get selected. By the way do you think Ian Bell could be in the selectors thoughts?

  • George on December 31, 2006, 12:20 GMT

    In my opinion it would require an all-star Aussie Legends XI to equal Dennis Amiss alone. Something like: 1. J Dyson 2. S Smith 3. M Veletta 4. D Wellham 5. J Watkins 6. T Chappell 7. G Cosier 8. T Zoehrer 9. P McIntyre 10. C Matthews 11. G Campbell 12. M Lewis

  • spence on January 1, 2007, 0:36 GMT

    george:good team my friend!!!I'd forgotten about steve smith;and watkins is a selection of genius.john dyson can be rested and replaced by ashley woodcock:remember him?? my bowling attack would revolve around the unique talents of tony dell,ross duncan and dave gilbert,with murray bennett as the spin king.how do you balance this collection of "legends"?simple:shove trevor laughlin in as your match winning all rounder... what's interesting about the initial reference to dennis amiss is that despite his failures against australia,he still has a test average of 46.check out his test figures against the west indies;that's why he was "trumpeted" by english fans.