Geoff Allott InterviewJames Nixon |
CW: You were forced to retire rather prematurely from cricket, due to a injury. What do you do with your time these days?
GA: I currently work for ANZ Bank in New Zealand, and manage a Mortgage portfolio through the South Island and Wellington regions. My wife ‘Ginny’ and I are expecting our first child in early November so we are getting ourselves organised for this very exciting event!
CW: Who would you say was your least favourite batsman to bowl against?
GA: Generally any ‘Sub-continent’ countries’ top order I found difficult to bowl to because of their slightly unorthodox approach. They have tremendous timing, and an uncanny knack of pre-determining where each delivery will be bowled. I like the aggressive approach they take, and think this has been instrumental in developing the game of cricket.
CW: What batsman are you glad that you never had to bowl against?
GA: Fortunately I have had the opportunity to bowl against some of the best batsmen of all time. It is always a challenge when you get to test your skills against world renowned players, and it is an experience to cherish.
CW: What young New Zealand names can we look out for in the near future?
GA: In comparison to recent history, New Zealand cricket is now looking very healthy in terms of quality young players to choose from. However of more importance is the passion and desire that these guys are displaying and the culture that is developing in the side.
The best of the young fellas coming through will be a couple of years away, but the likes of Jacob Oram, Shane Bond, & Ian Butler will stamp their mark on the game in the next season or two.
CW: In a recent interview, Sir Richard Hadlee called Glenn McGrath the best fast bowler in the world. Do you agree or disagree?
GA: Glenn McGrath has been a role model for many ‘Fast Bowlers’. Not only is he naturally gifted, but his attitude is an example that all cricketers should take note of. He has provided the cricketing world many moments of pleasure and I would view Glenn as one of the most respected cricketers in world cricket.
CW: What is your most memorable cricketing moment/achievement?
GA: The 1999 World Cup, and the 99′ tour of England were definite highlights for me. Getting 20 wickets in the world cup and progressing to the semi-finals was a great experience, as was the Test win at Lords (NZ’s first ever!), and the series victory.
CW: What do you think it is about Stephen Fleming’s captaincy which makes it so effective?
GA: He leads by example, plans well, and is extremely well organised. Being articulate, his communication is always strong both within the team circles and with external parties such as media and sponsors.
CW: Who do you estimate as the best captain in cricket currently?
GA: Stephen Fleming
CW: Would you like to comment on New Zealand’s World Cup venture?
GA: I genuinely thought we would win the world cup. As it transpired there were a few issues that did not help the players chances of performing to the best of their ability which is paramount to small country like NZ if it is to win the world cup. We will be very competitive at the next one!
CW: What are your opinions on the further integration of technology into the game, especially in the area of umpiring?
GA: I believe we have to make a decision one way or another on the technology issue. This needs to be an informed decision where ALL stakeholders in the game are asked their thoughts – including players, umpires, spectators, and administrators.
There are valid arguments for all concerned and it is a matter of the final outcome being in the best interests of the game (including it’s WORLDWIDE sustainability).
Here are some questions from Cricket Web members
Andre: Would you like to comment on your world-record duck?
GA: Blame Chris Harris for this! He denied me at least six runs (that I wanted to take!) throughout our partnership. Actually, Chris was scoring reasonably well and it was a matter of surviving the test. I am proud to hold a World record for batting (however it would of been nice if it involved more runs!).
Rik: What new English player most impresses you (please don’t say Harmison)?
GA: Michael Vaughan has really impressed. I just hope that the English media doesn’t destroy him.
Rich_2001: Who would you say is an inspiration for you, in terms of cricket?
GA: Anyone that displays determination and passion on and off the field. Sir Richard Hadlee gave NZers the opportunity to experience professional cricket and what it required to succeed. Glenn McGrath is a player that displays determination, passion, and patience, and Brett Lee and Shane Bond for bringing back the excitement of ‘fast bowling’.
Luckyeddie: Did you consider yourself as more-or-less a one-day specialist?
GA: Definitely more successful at ODI’s than tests. I found that being able to reverse swing the ball late in the innings played an important part in this. I loved the speed of the hype of the game, although a tight Test match is hard to beat.
Luckyeddie: If not, why does you think that you were so much more successful in the shorter version of the game?
GA: I only learnt to swing the ball late in my career (ie using three fingers on the ball instead of the normal two down the seam which made a huge difference to the seam angle and hence my ability to swing the ball)
I played most of my test matches before I developed this technique and it reflects in my performance. The new grip was used through my ODI career, and then in my later test matches (ie England 99 tour), with more success.