Shaun Tait March 22, 2014

'I earned my first cap when Australia was at its peak'

Shaun Tait remembers knocking out a batsman when he was 15, and playing alongside Shane Warne, a poster of whom he had up in his room as a kid
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First hero
It's more teams that I looked up to than players. I always liked watching the West Indian and Pakistani fast bowlers of the early '90s. All my memories growing up were of watching one-day cricket.

First time I hurt a batsman
I knocked a kid out when I was 15. I bowled a bouncer at him and he turned around. It ended up hitting him on the back of the head!

First time I was in awe of someone I was playing with
My first tour with the Australian team was to Sri Lanka in 2004, although I didn't play a game. During that time I was in a dressing room full of legends, so I was in awe of most of them. I had a poster of Shane Warne on my wall as a kid. Then I was called up by my country and I ended up playing with him.

First time I wore the baggy green
It came in the Ashes of 2005 against England. Pulling on the baggy green in that game was a moment of a lifetime, really. Unfortunately my Test career was short-lived and I only played three games. But I still earned my first cap at a time when Australia was at its cricketing peak.

First piece of advice to a young quick bowler
To go out there and aim to take a wicket every ball.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • BazD on March 25, 2014, 2:07 GMT

    Spent many days watching at Adelaide Oval and was fortunate to have witnessed Tait in full flight - was an experience I'll never forget! I think everyone knew he wouldn't have a long career with his action, which unfortunately cut his career short, but I do remember him nearly winning a one day final singlehandedly, taking 6 wickets with extreme pace. I also remember the 2007 World Cup, where he was virtually unplayable in some games. I was at the MCG when he bowled 160kph..that was unbelievable, then backed it up at Lords with 161.1kph. Sad He didn't have a long career but was thrilling to watch.

  • WarVdm on March 26, 2014, 9:16 GMT

    That piece of advice at the end of his interview kind of sums up why he never became a great fast bowler and why he couldn't make it at Test level. That is probably the last piece of advice one should ever give a young bowler (unless you are playing a game where you bowl a maximum of 24 deliveries per match, perhaps).

  • spongebat_squarestumps on March 24, 2014, 12:01 GMT

    Ponting perfectly summed up Tati's game during an international T20 on-field commentary piece - when asked to rate Tait's performance in the match, he replied "Bowls like tarzan; fields like Jane". Tait is a one-trick pony who, unlike say Bret Lee, was never pushed to hone his all-round game, which meant that the rest of the team had to carry his slack.

  • SirBobJones on March 24, 2014, 3:29 GMT

    Harsh on Tait and generous to Tomic in my opinion...Tait would be the big server who didn't have much of an all-round game then kept getting injured. None really come to mind, maybe like Ivo Karlovic or something, not in the Isner class.

  • on March 24, 2014, 3:19 GMT

    Im with Scott Davey ..... Shaun Tait ... from the same mould as Jonathon Trott ( same 'heart ' only with 1/2 of the talent of Trott ) .... I love the bit here about ..." First time I hurt a batsman " ... Yeah !! " I was fifteen and 6' 2" and the other kid was 4ft O ! ..." ......

  • on March 24, 2014, 2:38 GMT

    Sean Tait is the Bernard Tomich of cricket

  • Mr.Lock on March 23, 2014, 16:19 GMT

    Tait was good, wasn't groomed well I think else would have been magnificent for Australia.

  • on March 23, 2014, 10:27 GMT

    I think that Pakistan ans Australia have consistently reached the semi finals of most major tournaments for a long, long time - since before 1982 even.

    OK

  • BobCo on March 22, 2014, 19:12 GMT

    more advice from Taity... "get a really good PR agent". I visit Adelaide, Tait's present home base, pretty regularly, and it is utterly scarey how often Tait is in the press for having done something absolutely "amazing" (not!!!), even in winter when the Aussie rules is in full swing. His PR man earns his money, for sure. When he isn't crocked with some feeble injury and actually manages to play a game, the Adelaide press often writes how Tait won some (probably meaningless) game or other singlehanded when in fact he took 1 for 30 off 3 or something like that. Over blown PR rubbish, that unfortunately he appears to believe. I think he is one of the most over rated bowlers of the modern day. Fast, yes, control, no. I'd take Thommo, Bond, Shoaib, even Lee, over Tait any day in their prime. Tait just couldn't sustain anything except his press releases!

  • Chris_P on March 22, 2014, 19:10 GMT

    @Upul Liyanapathiranage. Ah yes, and after 3 Tests, Warne averaged 261! Got it. You are up with it, aren't you?

  • BazD on March 25, 2014, 2:07 GMT

    Spent many days watching at Adelaide Oval and was fortunate to have witnessed Tait in full flight - was an experience I'll never forget! I think everyone knew he wouldn't have a long career with his action, which unfortunately cut his career short, but I do remember him nearly winning a one day final singlehandedly, taking 6 wickets with extreme pace. I also remember the 2007 World Cup, where he was virtually unplayable in some games. I was at the MCG when he bowled 160kph..that was unbelievable, then backed it up at Lords with 161.1kph. Sad He didn't have a long career but was thrilling to watch.

  • WarVdm on March 26, 2014, 9:16 GMT

    That piece of advice at the end of his interview kind of sums up why he never became a great fast bowler and why he couldn't make it at Test level. That is probably the last piece of advice one should ever give a young bowler (unless you are playing a game where you bowl a maximum of 24 deliveries per match, perhaps).

  • spongebat_squarestumps on March 24, 2014, 12:01 GMT

    Ponting perfectly summed up Tati's game during an international T20 on-field commentary piece - when asked to rate Tait's performance in the match, he replied "Bowls like tarzan; fields like Jane". Tait is a one-trick pony who, unlike say Bret Lee, was never pushed to hone his all-round game, which meant that the rest of the team had to carry his slack.

  • SirBobJones on March 24, 2014, 3:29 GMT

    Harsh on Tait and generous to Tomic in my opinion...Tait would be the big server who didn't have much of an all-round game then kept getting injured. None really come to mind, maybe like Ivo Karlovic or something, not in the Isner class.

  • on March 24, 2014, 3:19 GMT

    Im with Scott Davey ..... Shaun Tait ... from the same mould as Jonathon Trott ( same 'heart ' only with 1/2 of the talent of Trott ) .... I love the bit here about ..." First time I hurt a batsman " ... Yeah !! " I was fifteen and 6' 2" and the other kid was 4ft O ! ..." ......

  • on March 24, 2014, 2:38 GMT

    Sean Tait is the Bernard Tomich of cricket

  • Mr.Lock on March 23, 2014, 16:19 GMT

    Tait was good, wasn't groomed well I think else would have been magnificent for Australia.

  • on March 23, 2014, 10:27 GMT

    I think that Pakistan ans Australia have consistently reached the semi finals of most major tournaments for a long, long time - since before 1982 even.

    OK

  • BobCo on March 22, 2014, 19:12 GMT

    more advice from Taity... "get a really good PR agent". I visit Adelaide, Tait's present home base, pretty regularly, and it is utterly scarey how often Tait is in the press for having done something absolutely "amazing" (not!!!), even in winter when the Aussie rules is in full swing. His PR man earns his money, for sure. When he isn't crocked with some feeble injury and actually manages to play a game, the Adelaide press often writes how Tait won some (probably meaningless) game or other singlehanded when in fact he took 1 for 30 off 3 or something like that. Over blown PR rubbish, that unfortunately he appears to believe. I think he is one of the most over rated bowlers of the modern day. Fast, yes, control, no. I'd take Thommo, Bond, Shoaib, even Lee, over Tait any day in their prime. Tait just couldn't sustain anything except his press releases!

  • Chris_P on March 22, 2014, 19:10 GMT

    @Upul Liyanapathiranage. Ah yes, and after 3 Tests, Warne averaged 261! Got it. You are up with it, aren't you?

  • EdwinD on March 22, 2014, 16:57 GMT

    I remember the ODI in 2011 v England at Lords. Collingwood (90's) and Bresnan (30;s) were well set - Tait came on for a 2nd spell, Bresnan took a single straightaway and the next ball took all 3 of Collingwood's stumps....it was timed at 100.4 mph if I recall.....

  • on March 22, 2014, 16:46 GMT

    The most exciting thing about cricket is really fast bowlers IMHO. He had little stamina but he did the job for Australia during the WC in WI.

  • on March 22, 2014, 15:47 GMT

    @Omer Ayaz Worst teams to watch ? For me they play entertaining and street smart cricket . In this t20 wc , both of these teams got a real shot at the title .

  • on March 22, 2014, 15:28 GMT

    Feel like laughing at the knowledge of those who think that Pakistan is among the worst sides in any format nowadays. Pakistan's ranking is higher than Sri Lanka, New Zealand and West indies in Tests, in ODI's they are above New Zealand and West Indies, they are even better than Australia, South Africa, England, West Indies and New Zealand in T20 cricket. It is despite the fact that they are not allowed to play at their home ground in front of their own crowd. They are not even given a chance in IPL. Hats off to them for still keeping themselves abreast the top cricketing nations of the world.

  • on March 22, 2014, 14:45 GMT

    WI and Pak team in the early 90's were worth watching any day any time - India and other countries were just nowhere these two sides in terms of quality of players and esp fast bowling. Just shows how things change as Pak and WI are probably the worst teams to watch now in any format.

  • on March 22, 2014, 14:12 GMT

    Tait and bond wish they played a little longer . They were in a different slot as fast bowlers

  • Barnesy4444 on March 22, 2014, 12:20 GMT

    Just looking at that photo, hips, back and legs all going in separate directions shows why he would never be a long term bowler. In those tests he played after a few overs and a bit of fielding his speed dropped to about 140 km/h but still didn't have control.

    But there was a period of about 3 years when he was scary in both ODI and t20 and that's good enough for me.

  • nothingnew on March 22, 2014, 11:22 GMT

    he is not a player to talk as superb bowler . Most of the time he didn't have aim to bowl . just pace. when considering Shoib he was the man with face who could deliver bowl accurately . But we missed shoib than Tait . Talking about McGrath is better than this .

  • on March 22, 2014, 10:26 GMT

    @Upul, he averaged 23 in ODI and 17 in T20. Not everyone set the world alight in their first 3 tests. He was entertaining, irrespective of whether he was taking wickets, or the batsmen were dominating.

  • electric_loco_WAP4 on March 22, 2014, 7:10 GMT

    @Upul,Sir Francis- For his 22 odd W in '07 wc,breaking back of opp. by blasting out t/o,breaking through in middle,of course r/s toe crunchers @ death,also being X fac. in an already daunting Aus outfit-replacing Lee.Also thrill he gave with100 mph bolts.

  • on March 22, 2014, 6:57 GMT

    Some of the negative comments on this post show complete ignorance. If someone plays Test cricket, they are a quality player and better than all of the people commenting on here!

  • vallavarayar on March 22, 2014, 6:43 GMT

    Probably the quickest bowler I've ever seen. Respect.

  • on March 22, 2014, 6:18 GMT

    6 tests 5 wickets with an average of 60.4 why still we are talking about him?

  • on March 22, 2014, 6:00 GMT

    So you accept that only after your arrival Australia were down from their peak

  • on March 22, 2014, 5:58 GMT

    So you mean, it's only after your arrival Australia were down from their peak

  • Kizman on March 22, 2014, 4:58 GMT

    damn shame we didn't get to see a lot of tait, by far the 2nd quickest bowler of the last decade behind shoaib.

  • IndianInnerEdge on March 22, 2014, 3:20 GMT

    At one point I seriously Tait would be another Thommo type bowler, with his strong slingy action and extreme pace, I thought he, Lee and Bichel would lead Aus in the 2000's , unfortunatly for him and the rest of the world his body didnt co-operate and and injuries took its toll......Best wishes and good luck - from an indian fan :)

  • IndianInnerEdge on March 22, 2014, 3:20 GMT

    At one point I seriously Tait would be another Thommo type bowler, with his strong slingy action and extreme pace, I thought he, Lee and Bichel would lead Aus in the 2000's , unfortunatly for him and the rest of the world his body didnt co-operate and and injuries took its toll......Best wishes and good luck - from an indian fan :)

  • Kizman on March 22, 2014, 4:58 GMT

    damn shame we didn't get to see a lot of tait, by far the 2nd quickest bowler of the last decade behind shoaib.

  • on March 22, 2014, 5:58 GMT

    So you mean, it's only after your arrival Australia were down from their peak

  • on March 22, 2014, 6:00 GMT

    So you accept that only after your arrival Australia were down from their peak

  • on March 22, 2014, 6:18 GMT

    6 tests 5 wickets with an average of 60.4 why still we are talking about him?

  • vallavarayar on March 22, 2014, 6:43 GMT

    Probably the quickest bowler I've ever seen. Respect.

  • on March 22, 2014, 6:57 GMT

    Some of the negative comments on this post show complete ignorance. If someone plays Test cricket, they are a quality player and better than all of the people commenting on here!

  • electric_loco_WAP4 on March 22, 2014, 7:10 GMT

    @Upul,Sir Francis- For his 22 odd W in '07 wc,breaking back of opp. by blasting out t/o,breaking through in middle,of course r/s toe crunchers @ death,also being X fac. in an already daunting Aus outfit-replacing Lee.Also thrill he gave with100 mph bolts.

  • on March 22, 2014, 10:26 GMT

    @Upul, he averaged 23 in ODI and 17 in T20. Not everyone set the world alight in their first 3 tests. He was entertaining, irrespective of whether he was taking wickets, or the batsmen were dominating.

  • nothingnew on March 22, 2014, 11:22 GMT

    he is not a player to talk as superb bowler . Most of the time he didn't have aim to bowl . just pace. when considering Shoib he was the man with face who could deliver bowl accurately . But we missed shoib than Tait . Talking about McGrath is better than this .