Sir Alec Bedser Passes

5 04 2010

Bradders writes:

Alec Bedser

Sir Alec Bedser, one of the true post war legends of the game of cricket, passed away on Sunday evening. It is always a sad day when a sporting legend passes, but somehow for me Alec Bedser’s passing is particularly poignant.

Over the years growing up, I spent many happy hours pouring over old Wisdens, reading books about cricket in these bygone days with the period immediately post war being a favourite era of mine. Names like Denis Compton, Bill Edrich, Godfrey Evans, Don Bradman, Arthur Morris and of course Alec Bedser rang loud down the years, all of them carrying a special significance.

The stories of Bedser’s battles with Bradman are legendary, and he is indeed the only man to have got the great man out twice for a duck. Famous particularly for his ability to bowl leg cutters, at one stage Bedser, in two consecutive series against Australia took 69 wickers at 16.8. Even allowing for 5 test series this was a brilliant exhibition of medium fast bowling.

The modern bowler Bedser likened himself most to was Matthew Hoggard, another tireless work horse always ready to run in for one more. Yet Bedser was more than simply a stock bowler, as in those post war years he was also strike bowler and more or less single handedly carried the attack. A role that Hoggard was never able to reprise for England.

Figures of 236 wicks in only 51 tests at an average of 24.89 show just how good he was. The ultimate accolade perhaps though for Bedser, was his selection in Don Bradman’s all time ‘Dream Team’ as first change bowler coming on after Lindwall and Lillee, which was selected just prior to Bradman’s own death. If the Don reckoned he was up there with the best, then its good enough for me!

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