December 29, 2012

'The little man has hit the big fella for six'

ESPNcricinfo staff
Memorable lines from the commentary of Tony Greig

Three decades worth of international cricket commentary can't be put down in a short list of memorable lines, but these quotes from Tony Greig will let us relive some of his and cricket's great moments. We have only used the ones for which we could find Youtube videos, which means "The Indians have come alive" and "These little Sri Lankans... they never give up, do they?" aren't in this list. Send us your favourites (with links, if possible).

"They are dancing in the aisles in Sharjah."
Greig captures the mood during Sachin Tendulkar's assault on Australia in the Desert Storm series in 1998

"The little man has hit the big fella for six! He's half his size!"
Tendulkar's straight six off Tom Moody in the final of the same series amuses the commentator immensely

"It's miles in the air… it's a wonderful catch! What a catch! The greatest catch! Unbelievable Steven Waugh."
Greig at his excited best while watching Steve Waugh take a running catch on the boundary

"Straight up in the air… Waugh won't drop this… oh he's dropped it! I can't believe it! What's going on here?"
He's forced to splutter when Waugh drops a dolly off Tendulkar

"Oh boy, doesn't she look gorgeous?"
As the camera pans on an attractive female spectator, Greig airs his opinion and prompts Bill Lawry to say something too.

"Changing behind the bowler's arm? That's enough to put any batsman off."
Npower sponsor girls by the sightscreen distract the batsman and Greig

"These Sri Lankans are giving the Aussies a real hiding."
And they did too, in the 1996 World Cup final

"What a biggie! It's gone into the trees."
During Sanath Jayasuriya's world-record fastest one-day fifty

"Viv Richards has obviously decided that tonight is going to be his night."
And it was, as Richards's 40-ball 60 helped West Indies win the Benson & Hedges World Series 2-1 in a best-of-three final

"No, we don't want him to go there, that's for sure. That would not help at all."
Greig's struggles with a Channel 9 graphic for slip fielding has his colleagues in splits

"That was hit really hard by Rod Marsh… no it wasn't, Rod Marsh has just walked into the dressing room, and what's more, he's retired!"
Greig confuses Allan Border with Rod Marsh three years after the keeper quit Test cricket

"He's blazed that one through the off-side field… go and fetch that!"
On Asanka Gurusinha's assault on the Indian bowlers during the 1996 World Cup

"That's a great shot. What a little beauty! That's gone miles over the top of midwicket."
On Ajay Jadeja's six of Waqar Younis in the 1996 World Cup quarter-final

"Kumble's playing a blinder."
Words you never thought you'd hear

"India have won in dramatic style! The whole of Bengal are on their feet!"
India's historic win over Australia in Kolkata 2001, in the words of Greig

"Looks like Inzamam is making a comeback… Sorry Inzy, don't want you charging into the dressing room here trying to beat me up."
A tubby fielder playing a match in the desert in the Middle East reminds Greig of a certain great Pakistan batsman

"They'll probably need Gillette to work on one of those Gillette G2 double-edged swivel heads to get through those valleys they have got here."
One of Greig's many memorable pitch reports, in which he uses a key and a scythe

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  • Dummy4 on January 1, 2013, 7:18 GMT

    Quite a few memorable one liners have been mentioned here but one that comes to mind was during Sanath Jayasuriya's 189.After Ganguly had bowled a wide to dismiss Sanath stumped for 189 in Sharjah,Tony said ,'' there are Indians, there are Arabs, there are Sri Lankans and Englishmen,they have,you have we have all witnessed...a great inns.''

  • Dummy4 on January 1, 2013, 0:48 GMT

    After bouncing Lillee while he was bowling in the 1974 Ashes, Mr. Greig knew that he had just angered one of the quickest and greatest fast bowlers in history. And when it came time to bat, Lillee was champing at the bit to show Greig just how dangerous he could be. Mr. Greig's reaction? A century against a lethal Lillee and a lightning quick called Jeff Thomson. As an Aussie, I wanted Lillee to succeed. But seeing Tony imitating the umpire by signalling every time he hit a four off Dennis was just sensational to watch. Mr. Greig may have had a flamboyant personality that could irk the opposition, but he bloody well had the talent to prove that he belonged in Test Cricket, regardless of which nation he played for. All Aussie cricket-lovers will miss the man very deeply.

  • Dummy4 on December 31, 2012, 19:27 GMT

    i miss miss u a lot sir...u lifted the standards of the game by ur commentary...the way in which u created interest in the minds of the viewers was incredible...ithink no body can do that..hats off to u sir may ur soul rest in peace

  • Dummy4 on December 31, 2012, 9:03 GMT

    "Whaddaplayaaaa" " Whattacomentettaaaaaa" Dear Tony, We will definitely miss you in the comentary box, May Your Soul Rest in Peace!!! Miss youuuuu Sir!!!

  • Syed Arbab on December 31, 2012, 7:29 GMT

    Got him... and many many more, Tony Greig was a reasonable cricketer and a good commentator, he'll be missed in the world of #cricket.

  • Dummy4 on December 31, 2012, 6:54 GMT

    Going Going Gone !! These are his words and will be etched in our memories especially during Sharjah Desert Innings of Tendulkar. Most invigorating commentator ever. Would give you goose pimples with his commentory. He Made more ODIs exciting. We will miss you.

  • udendra on December 31, 2012, 4:02 GMT

    he was the best commentator ever. His flair in the comm box will be dearly missed by fans.

  • Dummy4 on December 31, 2012, 0:49 GMT

    Billy Birmingham and "These liddle shree lonkans" and of course (infamously) the real TG when Dev Malcom bowled Viv Richards with a low full toss in 1990. "Goodnight Charlie" (which is a reference th the radio show "Goodnight Charlie" starring Tim Brooke Taylor and nothing else despite the press trying to make it out to be a faux pas of some kind (which clearly it isn't - unless you've got the kind of mind that subverts everything you hear and spend your life looking for ways to be offended by nothing)

  • Dummy4 on December 30, 2012, 23:50 GMT

    Favorite Tony Greig quote, after Pakistan spilled yet another catch: "Misbah [ul-Haq] by name. Misbah by nature".

  • B on December 30, 2012, 22:51 GMT

    Perhaps his greatest line was "Here, carry my luggage" to a smallish man who had come to meet the team in Adelaide airport in 1971-72 as a player on the Rest of the World team in Australia - he did not realize that this smallish man was Sir Donald Bradman - the Don did not identify himself but obliged for a few yards before embarrassed officials came and sorted out the situation!

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