Graeme Hick

Graeme Hick

Graeme Hick

Any man that can score over a 100 first class hundreds in the modern day must be good. To my eyes Graeme Hick was more than this. Unfortunately due to (in my teenage eyes at any rate) an inexplicable failure to transfer this ability to test cricket he will always be remembered as someone who should have done more in the game. As a boy growing up in the 90’s with the England cricket team renowned for its inability to win matches, select the same team twice and remotely threaten Australia it is perhaps fitting that I should have picked Hick as my favourite player.

Aged 15 I could reel off any number of statistics as to why Hick was actually England’s best player and why it was ridiculous that he should have been dropped by England for the 17th time. It is true for example that between 1993 and 1996 Hick scored more runs and averaged more than any other England player including Thorpe and Atherton. It is also true that, perhaps more than others, Hick was always on the edge of being dropped due to these perceived frailties that had built up in the years since his debut. My continued love of all things statistical in cricket was originally inspired by this hunt to prove Hick to other doubters. Sadly however Hick himself eventually made me concede the argument by finishing with a career average of just 31 in test cricket.

Hick’s England career post 1996 was a very much stop start affair culminating in the tours to Pakistan and Sri Lanka in 2001. I can still feel the burning indignation I felt at Hick’s bad luck in the Sri Lanka series when he suffered several appallingly  wrong decisions against him cutting him off even before he’d had a chance to repay Duncan Fletcher’s faith in him. Cricket is a difficult mistress though and even I as his most ardent fan had by this point acknowledged that Hick  as an England player was finished.

I never enjoyed watching him live however as I was always worried he would be dismissed every ball. I envy all those millions of people around the world who idolise Sachin Tendulkar or Ricky Ponting for example as they never had the worries I did when checking Hick’s scores in the paper or watching him on TV. Choices like these are often fickle things and my decision to follow Hick was no different. As a young boy I had a friend whose name was very similar to Hick’s and this was what began my lifetime Hick admiration. I only wish that my friend had been called Thorpe or Stewart perhaps as it would have been more fulfilling!


3 responses

20 01 2010

Think a worthy mention should be made for his unbeaten 405 at Taunton. As a boy growing up watching cricket in the late eighties, early nineties, this number is as synonymous with Hick as 333 was with Goochy, for his special knock.

20 01 2010

I don’t quite know how I forgot it actually! Do you remember the Duncan Fearnley 405 bat range?

Legendary stuff. For years I used Duncan Fearnley bats simply because of Hick!

12 08 2010

Many a happy year watching Hick play at New Road. One of the privileges of playing for the 1st XI at school was membership to WCCC. We’d finish nets, hop over the fence and watch the end of play.
Hick was/is a legend, we all idolised him, although I played with the DF Magnum, not the 405! We all wanted to play a cover drive like his, just an effortless striker of the ball, and when he hit it it was gone.

Agree with your article, and some comments can go for Ramps too, he was treated much the same, two outstanding cricketers poorly served.

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