Geraint Jones July 2, 2012

'I don't care if it wasn't out'

Interview by Jack Wilson
Geraint Jones remembers the catch he took to end Edgbaston 2005, but little of the celebrations that followed

What's your earliest cricket memory?
My elder sister Mari was a bit of demon bowler - and she was pretty quick too. When I was seven or eight, she hit me flush in the box. It still hurts now.

And your most treasured memory?
People may say that catch at Edgbaston but I think finding out I was going to play my first Test was even bigger for me. I remember Vaughany [Michael Vaughan] telling me in the practice session leading up to the game that I was in, and it was extra special because my wife had just flown out for the game. To be able to go back and tell her she'd be able to watch me make my Test debut was a good feeling.

What was it like after taking that catch to get rid of Michael Kasprowicz?
Relief more than anything. We'd gone from a winning position to looking like we'd lose. I just remember Billy [Bowden] putting his finger up and all the emotion coming out of me. I went mad for a few minutes after that.

It wasn't out, was it?
People say that to me. It might take a bit of the gloss off it but I couldn't care less.

Can you remember any of the famed Ashes celebration parties?
I know we went into London and a few of my mates managed to get into some place. I couldn't tell you where it was or when it was, though. There were a few sore heads.

Who hits the gloves the hardest?
I'd have to say Freddie [Flintoff] during the 2005 Ashes. He had loads of pace behind him and he really whacked into the gloves. Harmy [Steve Harmison] was a bit different as he had a bit more bounce, but Freddie's balls would just keep coming at you like a missile.

Have you got any superstitions?
I have a lot of habits - I don't know if they're superstitions! I always put my left shoe on first and then my left pad on before my right. I tend to only like to use one shower or one toilet at a ground. Kent has just been redeveloped and I've only used one toilet and one shower. I get a few odd looks when I'm standing and waiting.

What's the strangest way you've got out?
It'd have to be the way I got out in my last Test, against Australia in Perth. I played a sweep, they appealed for lbw, then Ricky Ponting ran me out from silly mid-off. The next thing I knew, he was jumping up and down and I trudged off knowing that was me done from Test cricket for a while.

What was it like picking up your MBE?
It was a great honour but the whole experience was nerve-racking. There were lots of protocols to remember - like, you have to wait for the queen to speak to you first, you have got to wait for her to put her hand out, and all sorts like that. It added to what was a special moment.

Who's the greatest cricketer that's ever lived?
For the length of time he's played the game and all the records he's broken, I'd have to say Sachin Tendulkar. He still has the passion to carry on, which is testament to the man.

One piece of advice you'd give a young wicketkeeper?
Keep it simple. They talk about footwork, but the most important thing is to be still when you take the ball. Also, it helps to keep fit. The older I've got, the fitter I've become.

Favourite shot?
The cut.

How many grips on your bat?
Just the one.

The Olympics is coming up. Are you into it?
I've got bit of interest in it. I want to see the 100m final with Usain Bolt. I'll sit down and watch that.

"When getting my MBE there were lots of protocols to remember - like, you have for the queen to speak to you first, you have got to wait for her to put her hand out, and all sorts like that"

Have you got tickets to any events?
We tried but there was no chance of getting hold of any.

But you have an MBE!
I know - but the computer doesn't recognise that!

Are you handy at any other sports?
I've played a bit of hockey and I like to play golf too. I've been known to dabble in a bit of clay-pigeon shooting as well.

You nick one off in the World Cup final - would you walk?
It'd depend on how many I'd got. Now with DRS you're unlikely to get away with it anyway.

If you were stranded on a desert island, which three things would you take with you?
A knife, obviously, some music and a mattress.

Papua New Guinea, Wales, Australia, England - you've got links to a lot of countries. What languages can you speak?
Just English I'm afraid. My dad speaks Welsh but I can't.

Which three people from history would you want round a table for the dream dinner party?
My mother passed away when I was 12, so it'd be good to have her there. Tiger Woods is a bit of a sporting idol for me and he'd have a few stories to tell. Oh, and Cheryl Cole.

Who's going to win the T20 World Cup?

Tell us something we don't know about you.
I'm a farmer as well as a cricketer.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Rob on July 3, 2012, 9:47 GMT

    I have a question for Geraint Jones: You once said you could be a better wicketkeeper/batsman than Adam Gilchrist, please tell us how it can be that that's never become a reality - by far.

  • John on July 3, 2012, 6:48 GMT

    @RandyOZ on (July 02 2012, 09:07 AM GMT), so let me see if I've got this correct. Geraint Jones had two Welsh parents who emigrated from PNG to Australia soon after he was born and he lived in Australia until he was 22, yet he is Papua New Guinean, while Usman Khawaja was born in Pakistan of two Pakistani parents and came to Australia at the age of 4 and he is a true blue Aussie. That sounds a little like distorting the facts for your own convenience to me, if I'm being charitable. Why don't you stick to being the first to comment on English domestic cricket. It seems to be where you're happiest. Always nicer to comment on stories where your team aren't losing. What was it you said before the series? "Remember who is #1 and they are coming for you" I think it was. I am literally LOLling at that. Pretty soon remembering is all you'll be able to do because it looks like England will be #1 in ODIs at the end of this series, unless rain intervenes. Aren't they #1 in Tests and T20s too?

  • michael on July 3, 2012, 0:54 GMT

    @Ravi_Bopara. Prior moved to the UK when he was 11. So he has spent two thirds of his life living in England. He learned how to play cricket here. So no he's not south african. Do your homework before you comment.

  • Vikram on July 2, 2012, 21:41 GMT

    @Peck. When the last World Cup came around, check out how many cricketers said that they wanted to read the book from Lance Armstrong!

  • MOHAMMAD on July 2, 2012, 21:03 GMT


  • michael on July 2, 2012, 19:27 GMT

    Randy. Where was Prior imported from? He's English the last time I looked. And i think Gilchrist had a worse series in 05. Flintoff's bunny.

  • Richard on July 2, 2012, 18:31 GMT

    RandyOZ - I noticed you're not commenting in the main articles because Australia are getting demolished!!! Jones was a key part in the Ashes win taking some great catches (remember the one Strauss parried up and Jones clinched onto it? Also made a very important 80odd runs in a 150+ partnership which won the 4th test. Until Australia start winning again (which they won't against the top team in all 3 formats) you should be quiet, especially since England have beaten Australia 3 out of the last 4 Ashes! 5-0 here we come!!!

  • Terry on July 2, 2012, 18:29 GMT

    Geraint (known as Grant by Aust's who didn't believe his name) Jones never played first class cricket and with Adam Gilchrist in place was in no danger of being selected for Australia. And yes technically as Kasprowicz's hand was off his bat handle when hit he wasn't out. Of course this was pre DRS and virtually impossible to spot in real time.

  • michael on July 2, 2012, 18:01 GMT

    Randy. Where was Prior imported from? He's English. And I think Jones had a better series than Gilchrist.

  • Jonathan on July 2, 2012, 16:39 GMT

    So they're saying that the catch wasn't out? However, a good while earlier, Kasper had been given not out on a LBW appeal that was in fact plumb in front, I guess you win some and lose some...

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