August 7, 2002

Players' association will be key player in New Zealand cricket

Adam Parore
Photograph © CricInfo
New Zealand's cricket players' association is going to be a very significant factor in the short-to-medium term on the cricket scene here, according to retired wicket-keeper Adam Parore.

In Christchurch to promote his recently-released book The Wicked-Keeper, Parore said the association was long overdue and would be crucial to matters of player fitness issues, scheduling and longevity of careers.

"It will be nice for players to have a voice in issues that directly affect them. There is a huge wealth of knowledge among the players now and they are New Zealand Cricket's [NZC] greatest resource," he said.

Parore didn't think there would be an advocacy role for the Association in the event of a repetition of problems that occurred with coaching and management when Glenn Turner was appointed coach of the side for a second term.

"That was more just a mistake, a bad choice, and I don't think New Zealand Cricket would make that sort of mistake under the stewardship of Martin Snedden and his team," he said.

Changes to the administration of the game, stemming in part from the furore that developed firstly in South Africa under Geoff Howarth but after that in India and the West Indies under Turner, had also resulted in vastly better conditions for the players.

"Expectations have increased too, but players are reasonably well looked after now. We are a long way along the line from 1994/95," he said.

Such was the state of the side now that if Turner returned as coach there wouldn't be an issue with him now, he said.

"There was a lack of maturity and experience, from me in particular, and it was a volatile mix," Parore said.

Despite some of the controversies of his career, Parore does have 201 wicket-keeping dismissals to his name and anyone looking to emulate that feat will have to have done the foundation work between the ages of 15 and 22 years.

That's the time he feels is vital for players to get their bodies in shape for the role required of them.

It was to do with "muscle memory" so that further down the track the work load to maintain fitness did not have to be so great.

As for the future, Parore believes any hopes New Zealand have of success in next year's World Cup in South Africa are dependent on Chris Cairns.

"If he is 100% fit then New Zealand are a good show," he said.

Having Shane Bond's speed to call on was another asset.

"He is a huge factor and the sole reason for our success in the one-day series in Australia. You have just got to bowl quick in that game," he said.

Having your typical 130kph out-swinger coming in and bowling didn't really help at all, he added.

The success against Australia last summer, both in the third Test at Perth, and in the one-day series, had been especially enjoyable.

"They grew up flogging us and it was nice to see the same guys who had regarded us with derision being embarrassed for a change.

"It was always great to play against an Australian side, but that tour, and especially that game in Perth, got to them. They weren't particularly happy, you could see it in Steve Waugh's body language," he said.

While victory didn't come in the Test matches against Australia, Parore did get the chance to finish his career with a Test victory over England, at Eden Park, a match in which he had to plead with the selectors to be included.

He promised them a good performance, after he had two ordinary Tests in the first two, and he did achieve that.

Asked why a good performance wasn't the goal all the time, he said, it came down to the opposition and what they allowed you to do.

But as for now, it is back to the markets in his role as an investment advisor, safe in the knowledge that 10,000 copies of his book (sales of 3500 represent a best-seller in New Zealand) have been printed and demand has been exceptional.