Hero Worship Hero WorshipRSS FeedFeeds
Cricketers on their idols

Dave Richardson on Graeme Pollock

A dasher, a run-machine, a gent

It wasn't how many he got, but how he got them

Nagraj Gollapudi

January 3, 2010

Text size: A | A

Graeme Pollock bats, England v South Africa, first Test, 1965
Always attractive: Pollock bats at Lord's in 1965 © PA Photos
Enlarge
Related Links
Players/Officials: Graeme Pollock | David Richardson
Teams: South Africa

I come from Port Elizabeth. And I suppose every kid growing up there looked up to Graeme Pollock as his hero.

He was a tall left-hander and always attractive to watch. It was just the way he batted. The way he made it look so easy was what made him special. He hit the ball with such power through the covers but it seemed as if he had caressed it. The ball would rebound off the pickets nearly all the way back to the cover fielder.

It was not only the number of runs he made but the manner in which he got them: it was just effortless. Not only I, but everybody regarded him as an absolute pleasure to watch.

His last game came during the rebel series against Australia at home and I was lucky to play with him. He was 43 then but he scored a lot of runs, including a few centuries against the likes of Rodney Hogg, Carl Rackemann, Rod McCurdy, John Maguire, all reasonable bowlers who had played a lot of first-class cricket or Test cricket. They were at their wits' end as he hit them all over the place.

Graeme is a gentleman and what I liked always about him was his modesty - for someone who was such a legendary figure in South African cricket he is extremely modest. He treated youngsters no different from anybody else in the team. And while a lot of the past players might be a little bitter, Graeme hasn't got that.

As told to Nagraj Gollapudi

RSS Feeds: Nagraj Gollapudi

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

FeedbackTop
Email Feedback Print
Share
E-mail
Feedback
Print
Nagraj GollapudiClose

    Automaton, man, inspiration

Twenty years on, Shivnarine Chanderpaul continues to be understated. And that doesn't bother him. What's not to like? By Brydon Coverdale

    85 Tests, 70 defeats

Numbers Game: Bangladesh's stats are easily the worst among all teams when they'd played as many Tests

Zulu finds fulfilment in coaching

After limping out of international cricket, Lance Klusener slipped off the radar, but his coaching stint with Dolphins has given them a higher profile and self-belief

Chanderpaul, the coach's nightmare

Modern Masters: He developed a rhythm that worked for him and gave him better balance at the crease

Johnson v McLaren: a tale of two blows

Russell Jackson: The South African allrounder had the misfortune of being in the line of fire twice this year

News | Features Last 7 days

Champions League T20 still battling for meaning

The thrills are rather low-octane, the skills are a bit lightweight, and the tournament overly India-centric

From Constantine to Chanderpaul

As West Indies play their 500th Test, here's an interactive journey through their Test history

Busy keepers, and Waqar's bowleds

Also, high scores and low averages, most ducks in international cricket, and the 12-year-old Test player

'My kind of bowling style is gone now'

Former New Zealand seamer Gavin Larsen talks about wobbly seam-up bowling, the 1992 World Cup, and his role in the next tournament

The umpire's bowling change

Plays of the day from the CLT20 game between Kolkata Knight Riders and Chennai Super Kings

News | Features Last 7 days