December 31, 2012

Obituaries

Greig, the big-hearted enthusiast

Tony Greig has been the pioneer in dragging cricket 'from its staid past into the modern era', and will be remembered for it, writes Tony Cozier in the Trinidad Express. Cozier found him to be a big-hearted man who was 'enthusiastic to a fault'.

As a fellow commentator with Channel Nine and other various networks over 30 years, I found Greig to be big-hearted, enthusiastic to a fault and, in his adopted home in Australia, a generous host.

Tony Greig's characteristic showmanship masked his qualities of sportsmanship, for 'he was happy to trade popularity for mischief' throughout his career, from his playing days to television commentary, writes Malcolm Knox in the Sydney Morning Herald.

In Tony Greig's passing, it is easier to think of a great character actor than a conventional sportsman. With actors, we're not surprised by the gap between persona and person. I didn't know Tony even remotely well, but those who did described him as a warm, companionable man and an extremely funny storyteller, with the invariable rider: ''And he's nothing like you'd expect.''

Greig's commentary was catchy and unique, and the Herald Sun have captured some of his memorable commentary moments.

Geoffrey Boycott, in the Telegraph, writes about Greig's smartness, and his ways of being ahead in the mental battle that confronted him on the field. He describes him as a 'gentle giant'.

Contrary to what some of his actions might suggest, Greig was a true sportsman and he judged people by their real worth, writes Ted Corbett in The Hindu.

Sriram Veera, writing in the Bangalore Mirror, talks about Greig's habit of winding people up for fun.

Tony Greig possessed the ability to connect with an audience, writes Sriram Dayanand in his blog. When Greig lifted India's batsman Gundappa Vishwanath in Mumbai, in his early days as an England player, he endeared himself to the hearts of Indian cricket lovers.

Vic Marks, writing in the Guardian, writes about the smart professionalism of Greig, which marked him out as special.

Angus Frazer, in the Independent, says Greig, in spite of some of his controversial actions and statements, gave more to the game than he took.

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