January 26, 2008

Craftsman and cavalier

Every significant passing produces a hundred memories. Adam Gilchrist's also brings forth a hundred smiles
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Adam Gilchrist: The man with the swing of a swordsman © Getty Images
 

Adam Gilchrist has given more outright joy to followers of the game than any cricketer since Sir Garfield Sobers. He will be missed as a cricketing force, as a contributor and as an entertainer.

Throughout his career he has played with a gusto that has set him apart from the common run with their facts and figures. The sight of him lifting a boundary catch when quick runs were needed - and departing with something akin to a hop and skip - reminded spectators that cricket is just a game and ought not to be meanly played.

Except on the dark days that occasionally encompass even the brightest lives, he retained this attitude, impressing crowds with merriment even as he slayed bowlers with swashbuckling strokes.

Yet to characterise Gilchrist as a cavalier is to underestimate his craftsmanship and his contribution. Guarding the stumps was his primary duty, a role he carried out with an athleticism and skill that spoke of substantial skill and unfailing stamina. It was no easy task to replace as superb a gloveman as Ian Healy, into whose hands the ball nestled like a bird in a nest. Gilchrist met the challenge with aplomb, not so much ignoring the hisses that greeted him as turning them into cheers by sheer weight of performance and freshness of character.

Standing back to fast bowlers, he was superb. Even now, in this sudden, dismaying and inevitable hour, it is possible to remember him flying through the air to take glides down the leg side, glove outstretched, landing with a thump and emerging with the ball with the sort of pleasure detected in a child who has found a plum. At these times he transformed innocent glances into remarkable snares.

Doubtless it helped that he is a left-hander but then his work in the other direction was not much worse. He was a capable, as opposed to gifted wicketkeeper.

Standing over the stumps to spinners, Gilchrist was reliable. Over the years Shane Warne had less reason than he imagined to regret Healy's departure. Until the last few rugged months, Gilchrist did not miss much. Often he'd wear a helmet to counter the Victorian's prodigious spin, and his work behind the pads was admirable. He holds the world record for Test victims. He must have done something right.

 
 
Adam Gilchrist has been a mighty cricketer who did his best to serve the side, entertain spectators and improve the way the game was played. The amazing thing is not that he occasionally faltered. The amazing thing is that he so often succeeded
 

But it is in his secondary responsibility as a batsman that Gilchrist will be remembered longest and cherished most. Simply, he changed the role of the wicketkeeper, changed the way batting orders were constructed. Previously keepers had been little, cheeky fellows built along the lines of jockeys who advanced their tallies with with idiosyncratic strokes sent into improbable places. By and large they did not alter the course of an innings. Gilchrist was having none of that. Instead he became two cricketers, a dashing and dangerous batsman and a polished gloveman. Throughout his career Australia has been playing with 12 men.

Others may reflect upon his thrilling innings at the top of the order in fifty-over cricket, not least the dazzling hundred in the last World Cup final. But then, he attacked because he must. In Test cricket he attacked because he could. He refused to be bogged down by bowling or inhibited by pressure, and did not allow a frown to cross his brow except when an injustice has been observed or an uncharitable remark had upset him, and then he spoke his mind with the same directness that marked his batting.

Gilchrist was a magnificent willow-wielder. Released from worry by his work behind the sticks, he was able to express his temperament at the crease. Fortunately he had the range of strokes needed to meet the occasion: the swing of a swordsman, an ability to assess the length of the ball in an instant, plenty of power, and a wide range of strokes off both feet. Always he looked for opportunities to score, giving ground to defence only when every alternative had been removed. It took fierce reverse-swing or probing spin offered early in the innings to unsettle him. Otherwise he was not easily troubled let alone dismissed.


Even now it is possible to remember him flying through the air to take glides down the leg side © Reuters
 

Yet it is not the keeping or batting that defined him. Throughout his career Gilchrist played in his own time and by his own lights. Although it could cause misunderstandings, his decision to start walking was not a gimmick calculated to improve his popularity. Rather, it was a conclusion reached almost by accident, whose merit he swiftly recognised. Likewise his reluctance to appeal for anything and everything upset the bowlers. Accordingly he was obliged to tread the fine line between serving the interests of the team and applying his personal code. Occasionally he was chastised for swaying too far in one or other direction but these were trifling matters that will not mar his reputation. No-one is perfect.

Above all, Gilchrist was a sportsman. Nothing held against him would have raised a murmur from someone else. Cricket will miss his smile and sense of fun and also his panache with the bat. Australians will miss the sight of him walking through the gate when the team was in trouble or else when quick runs were required. Everyone will remember the dynamic hundred struck in Perth against England.

Every significant passing produces a hundred memories. Gilchrist's also brings forth a hundred smiles. He has been a mighty cricketer who did his best to serve the side, entertain spectators and improve the way the game was played. The amazing thing is not that he occasionally faltered. The amazing thing is that he so often succeeded.

Peter Roebuck is a former captain of Somerset and the author, most recently, of In It to Win It

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • RoshanF on January 28, 2008, 6:29 GMT

    It is sad to hear that one of cricket's most dashing cavalier batsmen is going to hang up his boots. There is no doubt that together with Sanath Jayasuriya he was cricket's most feared and destructive batsmen of the past two decades.

    But I do not agree with Peter Roebuck when he says that Adam Gichrist has given more outright joy to followers of the game more than anybody since Garfield Sobers. Because Roebuck and others who had the pleasure of watching cricket in the late 70s and 80s should recall the times of a certain Viv Richards who played the game at a height that are only reached in one's wildest dreams. While I agree one tends to get carried away when you hear of favourite players retiring, responsible scribes would do well not to fall victim to this fallacy.

    But I agree that the cricketing world will miss the sight of one of the greatest entertainers the game has seen and an out an out gentleman at that as well. Well played sir!

  • visn on January 28, 2008, 5:45 GMT

    Now that Gilchrist is joining Pollock on retirement, the SA tour to AUS has lost a lot of it's appeal with the exit of these star sportsmen. I have also been on edge over Hayden ( keep goin!) and India's top six! Significant part's of our lives have been spent following these players, ( Pollock over 300 ODIS! etc), and now that's Gilchrist's joined Jayasuriya and Pollock, it's like being hit in the stomach.

  • valvolux on January 28, 2008, 5:14 GMT

    There are only 3 times when all of australia stops - anzaac day, the melbourne cup and when Gilly came into bat. He changed the game more than warne or mcgrath. Good luck Gilly - now will he retire in the west or move back home to nsw? Was so great to have him over in Perth!

    By the way, i know he's a left hand batsman - but i'm 99% sure he's actually right handed..at least he throws the ball right handed. That makes those leg side catches even more impressive. Strange quirk the aussies have there...hayden and langer are right handed, clarke is left handed, hussey is right handed, gilly right handed - i think it pays off to bat with your opposite hand!

  • cricketmama on January 27, 2008, 22:49 GMT

    It says something about a man, that fans from rival teams love him as much as his own. Like many others, I too was shocked & saddened by Gilly's announcement, and yes, shed some tears. I can't imagine an Australian team without Gilly. Look forward to seeing you in the shorter versions of the game.

  • Arijit_in_TO on January 27, 2008, 22:35 GMT

    Say if ain't so. Every wicketkeeper that retires hereafter will be compared to Gilly. He was truly a prototype for the modern game. I must say that while it may not have been his 'best' knock, I was awed by his 122 in Mumbai during that unforgettable 2000-01 series. He came in with the game evenly poised and took over, outsmashing Hayden while belting India's bowlers all over the park.

  • Orebon on January 27, 2008, 20:09 GMT

    Great loss. Will be missed. Sadly, all great things come to an end.

    In a way, I am glad he decided to call it a day now rather be pushed out of the team by the selectors. His falling standards behind the stumps (dropping a couple of sitters in this series) would only intensify the scrutiny of his batting performances which has not been that great (Average 30.22 since the Ashes 2005).

  • Nabeel-A-Adeel on January 27, 2008, 19:45 GMT

    Gilchrist was certainly the greatest wicketkeeper batsman ever to have played the game.He redefined a wiketkeeper's job by winning matches with his bat.No praise is enough for the way he turned matches around when his team was in trouble and needed him to play a big innings to rescue them.I dont think any wicketkeeper has averaged about 50 in tests in the history of cricket.The most important and memorable aspect of gilly's game though was him walking as soon as he was out.To do that in this age where matches are so intensly fought shows what a true gentleman he was.Australian team over the recent past has not been known for the very best of behaviours on the field but gilly was a class apart and always played in the spirit of the game.I think gilly was a huge factor in Australia becming the number 1 team in the world.He will undoubtedly be the wicketkeeper in any all time great cricket 11.For the cricketer and the gentleman that he was,cricket world would surely miss him.Good byeGilly

  • Bongwonder on January 27, 2008, 16:50 GMT

    "A life shud be measured not by the no. of breaths but by the no. of moments that take ur breath away" and Gilchirst you've well n truly lived upto this saying in letter and spirit. It saddens me no end to come to terms with the fact that a cricketer as brilliant as Adam Gilchirst is going to retire.Gilly has been a superb entertainer and much of the credit for Australia's dream run should go to his breath taking performances.I have often read or heard about him being addressed as wicket keeper/ batsman which I think kind of dilutes his ability either as keeper or batsman.When it comes to keeping ,I haven't seen a better keeper in the last 20 years . As a batsman I am sure you are feared much more than Sir Vivian Richards.Adam Gilchirst I salute you for being such a fantastic cricketer and also for being the gentleman u r.The cricketing fraternity would truly miss you.If u've a change of mind, India awaits u with open arms;even @ 50 yrs u'd do a better job than the Dhonis of the world

  • din7 on January 27, 2008, 16:25 GMT

    I was completely shocked when i hear the news that gilly is retiring. i am his biggest fan.I had seen his innings against srilanka in the worldcup final oh;what an inning that was!I use to wait for him to enter the ground. many of his innings were magnificient and his Sixes, those talking to skies i will miss it drastically.He was a wonderful person as everybody knows.There was hardly any person in cricket as liable as gilly. I am really going to miss him. please, gilly show your power in CB series.

  • Odeti on January 27, 2008, 14:19 GMT

    Gilly, I love the even game more when you are playing. Gilchrist will be remembered as Best batsmen + ethics. But I have a regret, that you should have played 4 more test matches to take the tally to 100 test matches. The reason I would say is down the lane, 10 years later when people starts showing the stats, like people who played 100 test matches, I would love to have the memories striking back. People may say statastics are nothing, but its the gift that makes player alive through out the cricketing era.

  • RoshanF on January 28, 2008, 6:29 GMT

    It is sad to hear that one of cricket's most dashing cavalier batsmen is going to hang up his boots. There is no doubt that together with Sanath Jayasuriya he was cricket's most feared and destructive batsmen of the past two decades.

    But I do not agree with Peter Roebuck when he says that Adam Gichrist has given more outright joy to followers of the game more than anybody since Garfield Sobers. Because Roebuck and others who had the pleasure of watching cricket in the late 70s and 80s should recall the times of a certain Viv Richards who played the game at a height that are only reached in one's wildest dreams. While I agree one tends to get carried away when you hear of favourite players retiring, responsible scribes would do well not to fall victim to this fallacy.

    But I agree that the cricketing world will miss the sight of one of the greatest entertainers the game has seen and an out an out gentleman at that as well. Well played sir!

  • visn on January 28, 2008, 5:45 GMT

    Now that Gilchrist is joining Pollock on retirement, the SA tour to AUS has lost a lot of it's appeal with the exit of these star sportsmen. I have also been on edge over Hayden ( keep goin!) and India's top six! Significant part's of our lives have been spent following these players, ( Pollock over 300 ODIS! etc), and now that's Gilchrist's joined Jayasuriya and Pollock, it's like being hit in the stomach.

  • valvolux on January 28, 2008, 5:14 GMT

    There are only 3 times when all of australia stops - anzaac day, the melbourne cup and when Gilly came into bat. He changed the game more than warne or mcgrath. Good luck Gilly - now will he retire in the west or move back home to nsw? Was so great to have him over in Perth!

    By the way, i know he's a left hand batsman - but i'm 99% sure he's actually right handed..at least he throws the ball right handed. That makes those leg side catches even more impressive. Strange quirk the aussies have there...hayden and langer are right handed, clarke is left handed, hussey is right handed, gilly right handed - i think it pays off to bat with your opposite hand!

  • cricketmama on January 27, 2008, 22:49 GMT

    It says something about a man, that fans from rival teams love him as much as his own. Like many others, I too was shocked & saddened by Gilly's announcement, and yes, shed some tears. I can't imagine an Australian team without Gilly. Look forward to seeing you in the shorter versions of the game.

  • Arijit_in_TO on January 27, 2008, 22:35 GMT

    Say if ain't so. Every wicketkeeper that retires hereafter will be compared to Gilly. He was truly a prototype for the modern game. I must say that while it may not have been his 'best' knock, I was awed by his 122 in Mumbai during that unforgettable 2000-01 series. He came in with the game evenly poised and took over, outsmashing Hayden while belting India's bowlers all over the park.

  • Orebon on January 27, 2008, 20:09 GMT

    Great loss. Will be missed. Sadly, all great things come to an end.

    In a way, I am glad he decided to call it a day now rather be pushed out of the team by the selectors. His falling standards behind the stumps (dropping a couple of sitters in this series) would only intensify the scrutiny of his batting performances which has not been that great (Average 30.22 since the Ashes 2005).

  • Nabeel-A-Adeel on January 27, 2008, 19:45 GMT

    Gilchrist was certainly the greatest wicketkeeper batsman ever to have played the game.He redefined a wiketkeeper's job by winning matches with his bat.No praise is enough for the way he turned matches around when his team was in trouble and needed him to play a big innings to rescue them.I dont think any wicketkeeper has averaged about 50 in tests in the history of cricket.The most important and memorable aspect of gilly's game though was him walking as soon as he was out.To do that in this age where matches are so intensly fought shows what a true gentleman he was.Australian team over the recent past has not been known for the very best of behaviours on the field but gilly was a class apart and always played in the spirit of the game.I think gilly was a huge factor in Australia becming the number 1 team in the world.He will undoubtedly be the wicketkeeper in any all time great cricket 11.For the cricketer and the gentleman that he was,cricket world would surely miss him.Good byeGilly

  • Bongwonder on January 27, 2008, 16:50 GMT

    "A life shud be measured not by the no. of breaths but by the no. of moments that take ur breath away" and Gilchirst you've well n truly lived upto this saying in letter and spirit. It saddens me no end to come to terms with the fact that a cricketer as brilliant as Adam Gilchirst is going to retire.Gilly has been a superb entertainer and much of the credit for Australia's dream run should go to his breath taking performances.I have often read or heard about him being addressed as wicket keeper/ batsman which I think kind of dilutes his ability either as keeper or batsman.When it comes to keeping ,I haven't seen a better keeper in the last 20 years . As a batsman I am sure you are feared much more than Sir Vivian Richards.Adam Gilchirst I salute you for being such a fantastic cricketer and also for being the gentleman u r.The cricketing fraternity would truly miss you.If u've a change of mind, India awaits u with open arms;even @ 50 yrs u'd do a better job than the Dhonis of the world

  • din7 on January 27, 2008, 16:25 GMT

    I was completely shocked when i hear the news that gilly is retiring. i am his biggest fan.I had seen his innings against srilanka in the worldcup final oh;what an inning that was!I use to wait for him to enter the ground. many of his innings were magnificient and his Sixes, those talking to skies i will miss it drastically.He was a wonderful person as everybody knows.There was hardly any person in cricket as liable as gilly. I am really going to miss him. please, gilly show your power in CB series.

  • Odeti on January 27, 2008, 14:19 GMT

    Gilly, I love the even game more when you are playing. Gilchrist will be remembered as Best batsmen + ethics. But I have a regret, that you should have played 4 more test matches to take the tally to 100 test matches. The reason I would say is down the lane, 10 years later when people starts showing the stats, like people who played 100 test matches, I would love to have the memories striking back. People may say statastics are nothing, but its the gift that makes player alive through out the cricketing era.

  • stallin on January 27, 2008, 14:05 GMT

    Adam gilchrist will be missed by not only the australian team but also by every cricket fan.He is definetely the best wicketkeeper-batsman in the modern day cricket.He hits bowlers of all kinds with an utter disdain, and his body language behind the stumps resembles of a farmer who is very focused to ensure that there are no insects effecting the crop in his land.See you in the IPL 'GILLY'.

  • RandomTalk on January 27, 2008, 12:50 GMT

    No more Gilly? World cricket will not be the same with the absence of one of the games' last gentleman cricketers. He will be sorely missed.

  • Jaip on January 27, 2008, 11:55 GMT

    Gilly was indisputably the best keeper-batsman World has ever seen. Stats tell the tale admirably. One day he had to retire, but I wish it was not so soon.

    Could Gilly have played for another year? I think he could. I am not entirely happy about past players in effect saying that his days were numbered, he's going thro' a mini-glitch in form, getting older is not helping, etc. We know that players go through ups & downs, but was Gilly really finished?

    Past players should have been a bit more careful while airing their views publicly. The pressure of not performing at his peak "for a short while", plus the unwarranted (in my honest opinion) pressure put by the past players forced Gilly into an early retirement. Remember the last time people said Gilly's time was over? He came back with a bang. Now we'll never know.

    To Gilly: mate, you were the best ever. We will, sadly, miss the spark you brought to the game. Wish you all the best for your future endeavors.

  • SriS on January 27, 2008, 11:27 GMT

    Timing of his retirement shows how selfless he is. No one deserves 100 test matches better than him. But then Gilchrist is the cricketer never played for the record books. Less fuss and simple even in his retirement announcement. He has given everything to the game of cricket as much as he got from it. Will be remembered as a true Legend.

  • sachin nair on January 27, 2008, 9:02 GMT

    Hi all, I am sachin from India.Gichrist retiring from the international cricket is a shocking news to me and the entire cricketing world.I can surely say that the only man from Australian team who is adored even by sub-continent cricket lovers is Adam. Be it be his thrashing innings against pakistan in sensational run-chase or his 82 ball hundred in my hometown mumbai or be it be the incidence where gilly walked straight away in wc 2003 semis.He truly had the sportsmanspirit. truly speaking my heart cried and tear came to eyes instantly when i heard the news.. Gilly u r always with us here in our heart..Hats off to you..

  • Cant-Top-Cricket on January 27, 2008, 8:14 GMT

    The games that Adam has won by not only his wicket keeping skills but also by the bat. I cant say that there is a favorite moment or memory that I can mention. This is because there are great moments in every game. How he covers such distance to get to the ball and yet still gets a glove to it. And how he moves down the pitch to a fast bowler and hits the ball into the crowd. He posseses such tallent that I am saddened to see him go. I will never forget the chant of Gilly-- Gilly--Gilly as he walked out onto the pitch after he announced his retirement (in Adelaide). Cricket will never be the same without him. Thanks for making the game better. No one will ever be able to top you. Good On Ya Mate.

  • Kazam on January 27, 2008, 7:31 GMT

    AAh.I am so sad that i still can not believe that he has quit it.Oh God how can he quit.But it is a reality.I was his biggest biggest fan.I am from Pakistan and i was waiting that when he comes to pakistani tour and i can meet him.Oh God how can i meet him now.He was the best of all.

  • Acme on January 27, 2008, 7:02 GMT

    Gilchrist was a pure one off on the cricketing stage. I am not a supporter of Australia and I have suffered at the hands of Australia often in the last decade. But when Gilchrist slaughters you, you are left with amazement than any pain. He was simply the most amazing cricketer I have witnessed in my two decades of cricket watching. He rescued Australia whenever they were in trouble with such regularity and so much ease that often embarassed the other regular batsmen. If opposition supporters hold him in such awe, you can imagine the joy and affection of the Australian fans for Gilchrist. Steve Waugh should be credited for recognising the great talents of a young and dashing keeper and realising the full potential. Gilchrist was one of those rare Australians who could not be hated by opposition supporters. At a time when Australia was playing solely to win matches than hearts, Gilly was a refreshing change. He is one Australian who will be welcomed by any country with great affection.

  • joshilay on January 27, 2008, 3:40 GMT

    I just cant put away the tear in my eye which Adam has sown!

    It was heartbreaking news to see such a wonderful human being being at the doorstep of retirement after having changed the sport for its own good and making teh not so watchable TEST cricket to the masses. If there isstill interest in Test cricket all over the world, its just because if this gentleman. Yeah! Gentleman. In this so called game of Gentlemen he was the only person who was a Doyen of the same. There are a few more but just a handful!!!

    How can a person be so brutal in flaying attacks all over the world and still be a pure gentleman, I wonder!!

    He has not been given credit for the historic win he helped in leading the side and creating in India in 2005. It just went much under the carpet. Adulation was in very less numbers. If it was Ponting he would have lost that series for sure.

    I just saw an interview from Hayden, who himself is a legend on this great Cricketer. That spoke volumes for this marvello

  • lakshya1 on January 27, 2008, 3:20 GMT

    I still remember (as a kid) waking up early at 5:00AM in the morning back in india the day when gilchrist and langer blasted pakistan bowlers to win the test match. it was a fantastic and memorable knock by gilchrist. I have been a great fan of australian cricketers and gilli is among them. 'Gilli' you have simply been outstanding not only for your excellency in cricketing skills, but also for your gentleman attitude (extremely rare to find these days)on field. Sadly, we will no longer be able to see you on field when australia visits india in october 2008...but i can only hope to see you as a commentator or ambassador of the game in some form or the other in near future....THE BEST WICKETKEEPER + BATSMEN of modern cricket...i wish you all the best for your last test match and hope you will blast indian bowlers (especially harbhajan) all over the park and make your exit even more memorable.....

  • GaryWJ on January 27, 2008, 2:43 GMT

    How do you pick a specific memeory of the best wicketkeeper batsman of all time? I live overseas and have to subscribe to cricket matches on charge for cable.........and Adam Gilchrist is one of the key reasons to happily pay whatever it takes when he is involved.

    Gilly, you can hold your head as high as anyone, and be so incredibly proud of great glovework and phenomenal centuries that live in our memories. You have defined the role of wicketkeeper/batsman, you are unique. There are some great options in Australia with Brad Haddin etc............but I doubt we will see the likes of you again.

    Thank you for the privilege of watching your whole career.

  • peeeeet on January 26, 2008, 23:27 GMT

    As an Australian, it is very sad to see this man go. Since the Ashes, he now has become the 5th man to retire, although all were inevitable. I just hope he gets to finish with another dashing hundred in tests so we can see this genius at work again. However, I think he has retired at the right time, not only by being a world record holder, but he now gives the likes of Brad Haddin an extended run in the team leading up to the 2009 Ashes. Australia and the world salutes the greatest all-rounder to have played the game, thank you Adam Gilchrist.

  • mickd40 on January 26, 2008, 22:00 GMT

    It's a shame to think in the end that an all time great like Adam Gilchrist was influenced to end his career even a few tests prematurely by the self appointed seers of the print and electronic media placing pressure on him. His place in the pantheon of the greats is assured - his strike rate even makes legends like Viv Richards look pedestrian. His average in tests deflated somewhat towards the end , but at around 48 when coupled with his scoring rate in both tests and one dayers must make him the greatest wicketkeeper--batsman in the history of the game. How much higher would his test average have been had he not often unselfishly given his wicket away in the search for quick runs. I suggest it would have stayed well over 50 where it was for most of his career. Not only that, but his spirit of entertainment and fair play make him an immortal. In forty or fifty years we may see another Warne or McGrath. Gilchrist, like Bradman, was a one-off we won't see again. Gilly we salute you!

  • Srini_from_sydney on January 26, 2008, 19:58 GMT

    I woke up this morning to hear the gilly's retirement and here is a poem from me to Salute one of the best entertainers of Mordern era.

    Hey Gilly, You will be missed dearly. You made the oppossition bowlers look Silly. The Shivers that you sent through their spines were Chilly. When you were Batting the opponent Captains had Delhi-Belly. With your gloves Gilly, many a times you took the ball Aerobically. Rarerly you missed them Dearly. You took quick singles confidently. Sixers from your willow landed atrociously. Boundaries from your willow landed dazzlingly. Giving exercise for the on field Umpires continously. You played the game sincerely. You walked when you nicked the ball convincingly. You walked the talk decently. You will be remembered for this permanently. Hey Gilly, You are the Best Unarguably. Every cricket loving fan will salute you applaudably.

    Hey Gilly, you will be missed dearly.

  • TruSport on January 26, 2008, 19:45 GMT

    What a man to have graced the cricket ground. Like Rudyard Kipling's statement "if you can keep your head while all others around you are losing theirs - you'll be a man, my son" sums him up. An outstanding cricket career comes to an end" - Cheers! mate and well played!

  • Hitesh_DeVilliers on January 26, 2008, 19:40 GMT

    Adam Gilchrist is probably one of the greatest cricketers of this era.Not only did he change the role of a batsmen keeper but he was also one of the very few to play within the true spirit of the game.It has been an excitement to watch him play some of the best innings throughout the years.His double at Johannesburg was a classic and his hundred at the WACA included some of the best hitting that would do any batsmen proud.I am a bit sad that he didn't stay on to play his 100th test,but he wanted to leave on a high where no one can criticize him.And I think no can criticize that decision.But the fact that he's not even missed one test match is just remarkable.In this day and age it is hard to play consistently.I am saddened that no one has even mentioned this.Gilly will be surely remembered and the cricketing world may never produce another Adam Gilchrist again.

  • anoopksin on January 26, 2008, 19:06 GMT

    he is not just a cricketer but a true sportsman.being from a team ,off late,highly criticised for not playing to the spirit of the game,this man alone handling the burden of keeping the spirit as well as hopes alive.a flier [ambidxtreous keeper] by occupation,a dasher by choice and above all a spirited performer and entertainer by nature is what ADAM GILCHRIST is all about. he is feared as well as respected by the opponents.

    The game of cricket will misses genuine entertainment of a genius and team australia have tough time ahead to find someone in the league of rodney marsh,ian healy and gilchrist to continue the high standard legacy of keeping

    anoop k s

  • madanmohan on January 26, 2008, 17:33 GMT

    It is indeed sad that we won't be seeing this great player anymore after this series. One of the guys along with Brett Lee who has played in the true spirit of the game, albeit on rare occasions when he was forced to bend to the team's liking, rightly explained by Mr. Roebuck. The sight of him dancing down the track and launching the ball into the stands is surely to be missed by cricket lovers around the world, irrespective of their nationalities.

  • Luxman007 on January 26, 2008, 17:25 GMT

    I am a lankan fan - If anyone else would have used a "foreign object" and stole the WC from us I would be mad. But Gilly is so amazing I even admire him for doing so. That is how much his contribution to cricket. Cricket will miss him.

  • kumar14 on January 26, 2008, 17:05 GMT

    All goods things come to an end. Cricket will no longer remain same fun until some another great appears on the horizon. Hayden and Ponting were dangerous, but Gilchrist simply slaughtered the opposition. He was reason for many to watch a game of cricket as his presence meant there was never a dull moment in sometimes predictable matches. His departure in quick succession to Mackgrath and Warne is a good news for the rivals to Aussie supremacy. They need not fear them any longer.

  • saltedmushroom on January 26, 2008, 16:40 GMT

    I shiver to my core when I see Adam stealing victories from the opponents with an amazing display of courage, confidence in tail and character. Good Cricket mate

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  • saltedmushroom on January 26, 2008, 16:40 GMT

    I shiver to my core when I see Adam stealing victories from the opponents with an amazing display of courage, confidence in tail and character. Good Cricket mate

  • kumar14 on January 26, 2008, 17:05 GMT

    All goods things come to an end. Cricket will no longer remain same fun until some another great appears on the horizon. Hayden and Ponting were dangerous, but Gilchrist simply slaughtered the opposition. He was reason for many to watch a game of cricket as his presence meant there was never a dull moment in sometimes predictable matches. His departure in quick succession to Mackgrath and Warne is a good news for the rivals to Aussie supremacy. They need not fear them any longer.

  • Luxman007 on January 26, 2008, 17:25 GMT

    I am a lankan fan - If anyone else would have used a "foreign object" and stole the WC from us I would be mad. But Gilly is so amazing I even admire him for doing so. That is how much his contribution to cricket. Cricket will miss him.

  • madanmohan on January 26, 2008, 17:33 GMT

    It is indeed sad that we won't be seeing this great player anymore after this series. One of the guys along with Brett Lee who has played in the true spirit of the game, albeit on rare occasions when he was forced to bend to the team's liking, rightly explained by Mr. Roebuck. The sight of him dancing down the track and launching the ball into the stands is surely to be missed by cricket lovers around the world, irrespective of their nationalities.

  • anoopksin on January 26, 2008, 19:06 GMT

    he is not just a cricketer but a true sportsman.being from a team ,off late,highly criticised for not playing to the spirit of the game,this man alone handling the burden of keeping the spirit as well as hopes alive.a flier [ambidxtreous keeper] by occupation,a dasher by choice and above all a spirited performer and entertainer by nature is what ADAM GILCHRIST is all about. he is feared as well as respected by the opponents.

    The game of cricket will misses genuine entertainment of a genius and team australia have tough time ahead to find someone in the league of rodney marsh,ian healy and gilchrist to continue the high standard legacy of keeping

    anoop k s

  • Hitesh_DeVilliers on January 26, 2008, 19:40 GMT

    Adam Gilchrist is probably one of the greatest cricketers of this era.Not only did he change the role of a batsmen keeper but he was also one of the very few to play within the true spirit of the game.It has been an excitement to watch him play some of the best innings throughout the years.His double at Johannesburg was a classic and his hundred at the WACA included some of the best hitting that would do any batsmen proud.I am a bit sad that he didn't stay on to play his 100th test,but he wanted to leave on a high where no one can criticize him.And I think no can criticize that decision.But the fact that he's not even missed one test match is just remarkable.In this day and age it is hard to play consistently.I am saddened that no one has even mentioned this.Gilly will be surely remembered and the cricketing world may never produce another Adam Gilchrist again.

  • TruSport on January 26, 2008, 19:45 GMT

    What a man to have graced the cricket ground. Like Rudyard Kipling's statement "if you can keep your head while all others around you are losing theirs - you'll be a man, my son" sums him up. An outstanding cricket career comes to an end" - Cheers! mate and well played!

  • Srini_from_sydney on January 26, 2008, 19:58 GMT

    I woke up this morning to hear the gilly's retirement and here is a poem from me to Salute one of the best entertainers of Mordern era.

    Hey Gilly, You will be missed dearly. You made the oppossition bowlers look Silly. The Shivers that you sent through their spines were Chilly. When you were Batting the opponent Captains had Delhi-Belly. With your gloves Gilly, many a times you took the ball Aerobically. Rarerly you missed them Dearly. You took quick singles confidently. Sixers from your willow landed atrociously. Boundaries from your willow landed dazzlingly. Giving exercise for the on field Umpires continously. You played the game sincerely. You walked when you nicked the ball convincingly. You walked the talk decently. You will be remembered for this permanently. Hey Gilly, You are the Best Unarguably. Every cricket loving fan will salute you applaudably.

    Hey Gilly, you will be missed dearly.

  • mickd40 on January 26, 2008, 22:00 GMT

    It's a shame to think in the end that an all time great like Adam Gilchrist was influenced to end his career even a few tests prematurely by the self appointed seers of the print and electronic media placing pressure on him. His place in the pantheon of the greats is assured - his strike rate even makes legends like Viv Richards look pedestrian. His average in tests deflated somewhat towards the end , but at around 48 when coupled with his scoring rate in both tests and one dayers must make him the greatest wicketkeeper--batsman in the history of the game. How much higher would his test average have been had he not often unselfishly given his wicket away in the search for quick runs. I suggest it would have stayed well over 50 where it was for most of his career. Not only that, but his spirit of entertainment and fair play make him an immortal. In forty or fifty years we may see another Warne or McGrath. Gilchrist, like Bradman, was a one-off we won't see again. Gilly we salute you!

  • peeeeet on January 26, 2008, 23:27 GMT

    As an Australian, it is very sad to see this man go. Since the Ashes, he now has become the 5th man to retire, although all were inevitable. I just hope he gets to finish with another dashing hundred in tests so we can see this genius at work again. However, I think he has retired at the right time, not only by being a world record holder, but he now gives the likes of Brad Haddin an extended run in the team leading up to the 2009 Ashes. Australia and the world salutes the greatest all-rounder to have played the game, thank you Adam Gilchrist.