GLENN DONALD McGRATH. Born 1970
I think the Australian way is … having respect for the game, playing good hard aggressive cricket…not becoming personal …giving everything you’ve got and being true to yourself, you never want to let your team mates down out there in the middle … and then walking off the field at the end of the day win, lose or draw, knowing you backed yourself, and knowing that you gave everything for your team.
Having taken 563 Test wickets, Glenn McGrath is one of only two fast bowlers to join the elite ‘500 Club’. A lanky country boy from Naromine in central-western New South Wales, McGrath honed his talent at a young age by repetitiously bowling against a 44-gallon drum at the family farm’s machinery yard.
Sure of his skill, he challenged himself in the formative Sydney Grade competition and quickly found success with his high stump-to-stump action, bounce and pace. He exuded a palpable sense of commitment whether representing his Club, State or Country and gave no batsman any quarter in the spirit of the true fast bowler.
Always a thinking player, his ability to precisely control the ball subtly by varying its pitch and flight, even at good pace, made him one of the hardest to face and he challenged all the Great batsmen of his time. In the twilight of his career when his pace was fading he took this talent to a new height by what has been described as ‘metronomic precision’ to his bowling.
In order to deceive the batsman he combined an identical approach, delivery and follow-through, ball after ball, with only the most subtle variations in wrist position. Always an aspirational batsman, McGrath holds the unlikely world 3rd highest score for a No.11 after making 61 against New Zealand in 2004.
Shouldering additional public attention during his playing days through his wife Jane’s battle with breast Cancer, McGrath now works tirelessly for the Foundation that bears her name.
B/B: (Inn) 8-24 (v Pakistan, Perth, 2004-05)
B/B: 7-15 (v Namibia, Potchefstroom, 2003)