Tonight, it is the turn of our all time no.8.
Sir Donald Bradman | Australia Cricket | Cricket Players and Officials | Cricinfo.com
Nominated by 92% of voters - highest ranking no.1
Sir Donald Bradman of Australia was, beyond any argument, the greatest test batsman of his era. Only WG Grace, in the formative years of the game, even remotely matched his status as a player among his contemporaries. And The Don lived on into the 21st century, more than half-a-century after he retired. In that time, his reputation not merely as a player but as an administrator, selector, sage and cricketing statesman only increased. His contribution transcended sport; his exploits changed Australia's relationship to what used to be called the "mother country".
Throughout the 1930s and '40s Bradman was the world's master cricketer, so far ahead of everyone else that comparisons became pointless. In 1930, he scored 974 runs in the series, 309 of them in one amazing day at Headingley, and in seven Test series against England he remained a figure of utter dominance; Australia lost the Ashes only once, in 1932-33, when England were so spooked by Bradman that they devised a system of bowling, Bodyline, that history has damned as brutal and unfair, simply to thwart him. He still averaged 56 in the series.
In all, he went to the crease 80 times in Tests, and scored 29 centuries. He needed just four in his last Test innings, at The Oval in 1948, to ensure an average of 100 - but was out second ball for 0, a rare moment of human failing that only added to his everlasting appeal. Bradman made all those runs at high speed in a manner that bewildered opponents and entranced spectators. Though his batting was not classically beautiful, it was always awesome. As Neville Cardus put it, he was a devastating rarity: "A genius with an eye for business."
Your all time number 7 to follow in the next 24 hours...