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Thread: A.C. Gilchrist - Superhero?

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    School Boy/Girl Captain Western Warrior's Avatar
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    A.C. Gilchrist - Superhero?


    He may not wear his underwear over his creams, or a cape on his back, but make no mistake - Adam Gilchrist is a superhero. In cricketing terms, at least.

    When Gilchrist strides out into the middle on day three of the final Test in Mumbai he will celebrate his fifth anniversary as a Test player. And what a five years it's been.

    Long gone are the memories of his debut against Pakistan at the Gabba on November 5, 1999. With many feeling that Ian Healy had been stood aside too early, Gilchrist merely went about his task with a cool and calm authority.

    After he'd scored 81 on debut, the calls of protestation against his selection subsided. By the time he had completed his second Test, those that had opposed his elevation were mute.

    Alongside Justin Langer, he shared a 238-run partnership against Pakistan at Hobart, as Australia successfully chased down a victory target of 369. Gilchrist was there when the winning runs were struck, unconquered on 149.

    It was the start of what has turned out to be a glorious career.

    Placing players in a historical sense while they are still playing is never an easy one, but if Gilchrist continues to produce the numbers he's displayed through his first 59 Tests, he'll go down as one of the game's greats.

    It is fair to argue that the game has never witnessed a better number seven batsman. His 3,672 runs have come at an average of 51.7, with 10 centuries.
    But perhaps the most telling statistic is his strike rate, which stands at a staggering 81.5 runs scored per 100 balls faced.

    Most Test teams consider that the hard work has been done when they have captured five opposition wickets. But when you are playing Australia, the sight of Gilchrist walking through the gate is a daunting one.

    His sheer rate of scoring can turn a game in next to no time. And then there is his wicket-keeping. Whilst he may not be remembered as one of the game's great wicket-keepers, his effectiveness is hard to fault.

    During this series, he became just the third Australian, and the sixth overall, to register 250 career dismissals. There is no doubt that he has benefited from one of the game's great bowling attacks, with his strike rate beyond compare.

    Currently, he averages 4.3 dismissals per game. The two Australians who head the all-time list achieved their dismissals at a considerably slower rate - Ian Healy (395 at 3.3) and Rod Marsh (355 at 3.7). Gilchrist is hopeful of playing through until the next World Cup in early 2007, during which time he could play around another 35 Tests.

    Should he continue to accumulate dismissals at his current rate, he may well eclipse Healy's world record. He added another line to his CV in this series by being the man who led Australia to the drought-breaking win in India.

    And then of course there are his one-day heroics.

    In 196 games he has amassed over 6,500 runs at a strike rate of 94, with 10 centuries. He also holds the world record for dismissals with 324, the only 'keeper to have exceeded 300.

    If you were to sit down and select Test cricket's best team over the past 127 years, Adam Gilchrist would surely be the choice for the spot of 'keeper-batsman. That fact is all the more staggering when you consider that he made his Test debut nine days shy of his 28th birthday.

    (c) www.sport.yahoo.com.au

    An interesting article about a fantastic player

  2. #2
    Virat Kohli (c) Jono's Avatar
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    Whilst reading that I thought you wrote it

    Great article, Gilly is absolutely fantastic. I am never comfortable with the fact that if you have Australia 5 down, Gilly still comes out. Most other teams you're starting to seriously get into the weaker batsmen, but with Australia you face the daunting Gilly. Not particularly desirable.

    He's great. I love his attitude towards the game, I love his attitude off the field and he's a great player to watch.

    Go GILLY!
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    SJS
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    Quote Originally Posted by Western Warrior
    [CENTER]

    If you were to sit down and select Test cricket's best team over the past 127 years, Adam Gilchrist would surely be the choice for the spot of 'keeper-batsman. That fact is all the more staggering when you consider that he made his Test debut nine days shy of his 28th birthday.

    (c) www.sport.yahoo.com.au

    An interesting article about a fantastic player
    Probably but people do tend to undersetimate Les Ames. He was not just one of the finest batsmen in England, he was perhaps one of the finest ever wicket keepers. His keeping is not so well known about only because as David Lemmon says in The Great Wicketkepers " Les Ames committed the crime of being too talented. People found it hard to accept that here was a cricketer who was good enough to play for his country both as a (pure) batsman or as a (pure) wicket keeper......On top of this he made wicket kwwping look so easy at a time when people were being taught that it had to be flamboyant."

    In Batting :He not only scored 102 first class centuries (the only keeper to get anywhere close to a century of centuries) and a test batting average of 40.6 (8 centuries). In 1933 he scored 3058 runs in the season and topped the batting for england against WIndies with an average of 83.5 !

    His keeping records, if anything are even more remarkable !! He broke the wicket keeping record for an English season when he was only 23 and broke it again. The record hasnt been broken for over 70 years.

    He had had 1113 dismissals inclusive of 415 stumpings which is an all time record for any wicket keeper in the history of the game.

    He took 100 victims in an English season 3 times and his record of 127 victims in 1929 is as unlikely to be broken as Tich freeman's 300 + wickets in a season !

    Similarly his record of 64 stumpings in one season (1932) is NEVER likely to be broken.

    It may be important to remember that it is now 40 years since a wicket keeper has had 100 stumpings in a season and the last one Roy Booth of Worcestershire (1964) had only 9 stumpings !!

    Ask any wicket keeper in the world and he will tell you that standing up is the ultimate test of a great keeper.

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    International Regular twctopcat's Avatar
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    When he comes to the crease there i always an element of fear which would be greatly elevated should he come in higher up the order! The ray of hope is that hopefully your bowlers can get no's 8,9,10 and 11 out before he does too much damage. Will be interesting if he moves up the order when he gets too old for the gloves. All i can say is i will be very happy if Geraint Jones is half as successful as Gilchrist has been!!
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    He's the best keeper-batsman around at the moment and the best for a long time if not all time

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    U19 Debutant Will Scarlet's Avatar
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    Truely Gilly is a manace to all opposing teams. At the rate he scores he can destroy the opposition bowling in less than a session. Damn good keeper to.

    IMO, Gilly is the best player in international cricket. And without the attitude.

    It seems he is a pretty decent captain also.

    Good article on Les Ames though.

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    Eyes not spreadsheets marc71178's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by twctopcat
    All i can say is i will be very happy if Geraint Jones is half as successful as Gilchrist has been!!
    I won't.

    An average of 25 combined with his keeping suggests Read should be playing.
    marc71178 - President and founding member of AAAS - we don't only appreciate when he does well, but also when he's not quite so good!

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    School Boy/Girl Captain Western Warrior's Avatar
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    SJS,

    Thanks for opening my eyes to the performance of Leslie Ames. One hell of a player. His test performances rank him up there with Gilchrist though I wonder why he didn't play any more than 47.

    The below article is from www.wisden.com

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    Wisden obituary
    Leslie Ethelbert George Ames, CBE, who died suddenly at his home in Canterbury on February 26, 1990, aged 84, was without a doubt the greatest wicketkeeper-batsman the game has so far produced; and yet, at the time he was playing, it used to be said there were better wicketkeepers than Ames, and that he was in the England team because of his batting. If this was so, would Jardine, for example, have preferred him to Duckworth in Australia in 1932–33? Surely not. When fully fit, Ames was England’s first-choice wicketkeeper from 1931 to 1939, when he virtually gave up the job. For Kent, he was an integral part of their Championship side from 1927 to the first match of 1951, when a sharp recurrence of back trouble, which had dogged him for so long, brought his career to an end while he was actually at the crease. By this time he had amassed 37,248 runs, average 43.51, made 102 hundreds, including nine double-hundreds, and passed 1,000 runs in a season seventeen times, going on to 3,000 once and 2,000 on five occasions. He had had a direct interest in 1,121 dismissals, of which more than 1,000 were effected when he was keeping wicket. His total of 418 stumpings is easily a record.

    Born at Elham near Canterbury on December 3, 1905, Ames went to Harvey Grammar School in Folkestone and at seventeen was brought to the notice of the Kent authorities. It was the county coach at the time, G. V. J. Weigall, who persuaded him to take up wicketkeeping as a second string to his bow, and a year or two passed before the young man began to appreciate the soundness of this advice. However, in 1927, Ames’s first full season, his aggressive approach to batting and form behind the stumps repeatedly caught the eye. And all the time his famous partnership with Tich Freeman was being cemented. In 1928, these two astounded the world of cricket: Freeman took a record 304 wickets and Ames, making 122 dismissals and 1,919 runs, achieved the wicketkeeper’s double for the first time. A year later he repeated what had been a unique achievement, but with a record 128 dismissals, and in 1932, when he was in superlative all-round form, he scored 2,482 runs, including nine centuries, at 57.72 to finish third in the national averages and made a record 64 stumpings in a total of 104 dismissals. In 1933, a batsman’s year, he enjoyed an annus mirabilis. Far from feeling stale after a gruelling tour of Australia, he discovered an even greater appetite for runs, scoring 3,058 including three double-hundreds and six other three-figure innings. He also made the highest score of his career, 295 against Gloucestershire at Folkestone, and two separate hundreds in a match for the first time, against Northamptonshire at Dover. To cap it all, there were another 68 dismissals. Ames’s innings of 295 was an excellent example of the tempo he regularly maintained once he was going; it took a little over 240 minutes and contained a six and 34 fours. It is probably true to say that he scored at around 50 runs per hour throughout his career, and it is hardly surprising that a player of his calibre should have won the Lawrence Trophy twice, in 1936 and 1939, both centuries being made in under 70 minutes. When Kent made 803 for four declared against Essex at Brentwood in 1934, Ames contributed an unbeaten 202, ensuring that the declaration could be made at lunch on the second day. In the season of 1937 he was as busy as ever, passing 2,000 runs for the third time and effecting 74 dismissals, though no longer with the help of Freeman, who had retired.

    Ames represented England in 47 Tests, making 2,434 runs, including eight hundreds, an 97 dismissals (74 catches and 23 stumpings). He toured Australia with M.C.C. in 1928–29 as reserve wicketkeeper to Duckworth, and would have played in the final Test at Melbourne, purely as a batsman, but for breaking a finger keeping to Larwood. Instead, he made his début against South Africa at The Oval in 1929 and toured the Caribbean under F.S.G. Calthorpe in the following winter. In the second of the representative matches (since granted full Test status) he helped Hendren in a match-winning stand of 237 for the fourth wicket in England’s second innings, his 105 being the first century by an England wicketkeeper. In the fourth and final match, at Kingston, he hit his highest Test score of 149. Against New Zealand in 1931, Ames (137) and G. O. B. Allen (122) put on 246 together for the eighth wicket at Lord’s, which has remained a record in Test matches for that wicket. The runs, which rescued England from a paltry 190 for seven, were made in under three hours, while at Christchurch in 1932–33 he and Hammond flogged the bowling all over the ground to the tune of 242 in 144 minutes for the fourth wicket. More restraint was expected of him at Lord’s in 1934 against Australia on the first afternoon, when he and Leyland came together and added 129 in what was to prove a crucial partnership. Failure then, and England instead of Australia would have been caught on the sticky wicket so brilliantly exploited by Verity. Ames used to say that he was more proud of this innings of 120 than of all his others; Wisden simply described it as inspiring. In 1935, against South Africa at The Oval, he made 123 before lunch on the final day, a tremendous effort and still the most runs in the morning session of a Test match. In 1938 at Lord’s, Hammond (240) and Ames (83) added 186 for England’s sixth wicket against Australia, and that winter in South Africa, on his last major tour, Ames again helped his captain in a major partnership. At Cape Town, in the Second Test, the pair put on 197 in 145 minutes for the fourth wicket, both scoring hundreds. Ames finished the series with an average of 67.80 and a career average in Test of 40.56.

    Ames was a correct player with a fluent classical style; a magnificent driver, especially when moving out to the pitch. When set, he employed the lofted drive over the inner ring of fielders with rare judgement and skill, and he could turn good-length balls into half-volleys on lightning feet. Woe betide any bowler who started dropping short: he would be hammered to the cover boundary, or despatched to leg with powerful hooks or pulls. A superb entertainer, he was popular with spectators up and down the land, but praise or flattery would leave him unmoved: he could never understand what all the fuss was about. Behind the stumps he maintained a consistently high standard. Among his more notable efforts when playing for England were eight dismissals against West Indies at The Oval in 1933, and against South Africa in 1938–39 he conceded only one bye for every 275 balls delivered in the series. On the Bodyline tour he took the thunderbolts of Larwood and Voce with quiet efficiency. His style was unobtrusive; there were no flamboyant gestures. He saw the ball so early that he was invariably in the right position without having to throw himself about. His glovework was neat and economical, his stumpings almost apologetic.

    During the Second World War, Ames rose to the rank of Squadron-Leader in the RAF and played a little one-day cricket, even taking a hat-trick against Epsom CC with his slow spinners. In the five post-war seasons before his retirement, playing now as a batsman, he enjoyed an Indian summer, adding nearly 10,000 runs to his already formidable aggregate. In 1947, and again in 1948, he made seven hundreds, his total of 2,137 runs in the championship in 1947 being reminiscent of 1933. In 1950 he reached his 100th hundred in brilliant style to win the match against Middlesex during the Canterbury Week, becoming only the twelfth player to achieve this milestone. His batting had lacked none of its old virility and panache, but that winter, captaining the Commonwealth team in India, he was often worried by the back trouble which was soon to end his playing days.

    Well versed in man management and administrative skills from his war service, he was given charge of three M.C.C. tours — the 1966–67 Under-25 team to Pakistan, and the senior sides to the West Indies in 1967–68 and Ceylon and Pakistan in 1968–69 — and he was a selector from 1950 to 1956 and again in 1958, the first professional to be appointed as such. From 1960–74 he was secretary/manager of Kent, a post he filled with conspicuous success, commanding the respect of the players by his sense of discipline and absolute fairness. From years of failure Kent improved steadily until they won the Championship in 1970. The county’s second great partnership, with Colin Cowdrey in charge in the middle and Ames working behind the scenes, had had its reward at last, and by now Kent were becoming one of the dominant forces in the limited-overs competitions. Ames was an honorary life member of M.C.C. and was in time elected to the Club’s committee. In retirement he remained fit and active, spending many pleasurable days on the golf course, where his natural sense of timing stood him in good stead. If ever there was a true Man of Kent it was he. The attendance of a thousand people at his memorial service in Canterbury Cathedral was a worthy tribute to him.

    Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack

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    International Vice-Captain Slats4ever's Avatar
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    Gilchrist is the best player by a long shot in the world.
    he is the best all rounder in the world..
    he is almost the best gloveman in the world.
    He is definately in the top 5 batsman in the world...
    He's a great figurehead...

    Hell I want to marry the guy..

    oh ps if any of you have problems with my views of him being the best in the world talk to my hiney, cos i don't want to listen
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slats4ever
    Gilchrist is the best player by a long shot in the world.
    he is the best all rounder in the world..
    he is almost the best gloveman in the world.
    He is definately in the top 5 batsman in the world...
    He's a great figurehead...

    Hell I want to marry the guy..

    oh ps if any of you have problems with my views of him being the best in the world talk to my hiney, cos i don't want to listen
    Gospel.

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    International Regular twctopcat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marc71178
    I won't.

    An average of 25 combined with his keeping suggests Read should be playing.
    You know what i mean, stop taking things so literally Marc, you belong on a Naked Gun movie!!!

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    International Coach tooextracool's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marc71178
    I won't.

    An average of 25 combined with his keeping suggests Read should be playing.
    chris read shouldnt be playing test cricket regardless......
    Tendulkar = the most overated player EVER!!
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    State Vice-Captain mavric41's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marc71178
    I won't.

    An average of 25 combined with his keeping suggests Read should be playing.
    Would you accept 5 centuries?
    Only two states to be in - Queensland and drunk.

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    Cricket Web: All-Time Legend Top_Cat's Avatar
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    Thanks for opening my eyes to the performance of Leslie Ames. One hell of a player. His test performances rank him up there with Gilchrist though I wonder why he didn't play any more than 47.
    Players didn't make enough money from the few Tests they DID play so guys like Ames instead played for his county and took the money from that because it was worth a heck of a lot more. Hey had a family to support after all.
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    Eyes not spreadsheets marc71178's Avatar
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    Also, I don't think there would've have been so many games to play in those times?

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