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Full name John Russell Watkins
Born April 16, 1943, Newcastle, New South Wales
Current age 71 years 346 days
Major teams Australia, New South Wales
Batting style Right-hand bat
Bowling style Legbreak googly
|Only Test||Australia v Pakistan at Sydney, Jan 6-11, 1973 scorecard|
|First-class span||1971/72 - 1972/73|
John Watkins was a legspinner from country New South Wales plucked out of obscurity to play his only Test against Pakistan in 1972-73 after only five first-class appearances in which he had taken 11 wickets at 37.18 - his reputation had been established in grade cricket for Newcastle. He struggled with the ball, but a career-best 36 helped the Aussies set up an unlikely victory. Watkins went on the West Indian tour that followed, but wasn't risked in the Tests, and hardly played at all. Keith Stackpole dubbed him "possibly the luckiest player ever to represent Australia", and recalled how in one of the tour games "he almost hit the square-leg umpire with the widest full-toss I've seen." His always-fragile confidence fractured, Watkins never played first-class cricket again.
For 30 minutes, everything else took a backseat, as the world watched in awe and fear, a fired-up Pakistan fast bowler mercilessly bullying an Australian batsman
Over the last few months, he has slowly moved from a flashy finisher, to a more measured risk manager
India's Plan A in this World Cup had worked flawlessly over seven matches. When they came up against the toughest opponents in the World Cup, however, they were left scrambling for a back-up plan
It was Grant Elliott and New Zealand's time in Auckland. Not South Africa's. But the Proteas will leave this tournament wondering when that will ever change. Maybe next time.