The Gloves are Off: My Life in Cricket


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The year-old attempted to sweep Australia bowler Jess Jonassen's second delivery but did not make any connection with her bat. She showed her glove towards Saggers, with a rueful look on her facel, gesturing that she did not think she was out. And replays confirmed the ball had in fact come off her glove and should not have been given out.

Former England batsman Nick Knight was commentating for Sky Sports and he himself initially thought it was out before seeing the replays. No reviews available. Only Nat Sciver stood up in the opening exchange in the multi-format series, posting a ball 64 as England, who slumped to early in their innings, were all out for in There were about 20 missed calls showing on it. Most of them were from my mentor and then manager, Alec Stewart.

Some were from David Graveney, the chairman of selectors. I can honestly say that I thought I would never play for England again. I see splits in the Australian camp.

West Indies

Clarke: Warner embarrassed us. Warner warned his Australia future in the balance. Champions Trophy team guide. Cook: England v NZ clash 'basically a quarter-final'. Sangakkara derails England hopes. Mentally it can leave the deepest scars. Out in New York, I was struggling to come to terms with it. I was questioning everything about myself and my cricket. I was very close to knocking keeping on the head for good — it was obvious that I had been dropped because of it. In fact, I have to say that I actually did pretty well to play 10 Tests with my keeping in the state that it was and the amount of work I used to do.

That was about to change. It had been mentioned to me that Bruce French was available to do some work with me if I wanted, but for some reason I had never taken up the offer. And I knew that he had long, dark curly hair that made him look a lot younger than he was. But that was it. Before I knew it, I was doing a session with him at the national cricket performance centre at Loughborough.

He was a bit stand-offish. The session he had planned for me was just too hard. He was asking me to do stuff that I considered impossible.

It was so frustrating. It drives me crazy when I am hopeless at something. And so we had an honest discussion. It was pretty obvious that we had to start from scratch. There was some very basic work to be done. I had to learn how to catch the ball. OK, I know I am a wicketkeeper and I know admitting such a problem opens up all sorts of abuse. But I did have a real problem with my catching. I was mixed up. Frenchy would throw me 10 simple catches and I might catch them five different ways. There is no way that you can be consistent if that is the case.

We also decided upon a method of catching that was a mix of the English and Australian approaches. To do this one, I have to wear the all-over body armour protection that rugby players wear for their contact training. He then gets me to stand about a metre away from an old-style slip- catching cradle and he will launch balls at it.

It is frightening how quickly the balls fly off. Basically, I will get hit eight times out of 10, but there might just be one unbelievable take that I manage that will make the session worthwhile.

It has taken a while, but it has been so worth it. He turned my career around. It was after tea on the third day as India compiled a huge score. As Zaheer Khan walked in, we took a drinks break.

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Some Jelly Beans were also brought out to boost our energy levels. Some of them dropped onto the floor and someone decided to kick them towards the pitch as a joke, presumably to wind up Zaheer. It certainly did wind him up. Afterwards, all the press wanted to talk about was the aggro.

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There was no mention of Jelly Beans. That came later, when Zaheer was wheeled out for an interview. That was it.

Bruce French: An accident-prone wicketkeeper who was once England's best behind the wickets

Nobody stuck up for me. If I had been a senior player, it might not have been so bad, but I was a junior player making my way in Test cricket. Worse was to come.

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A story emerged about my sledging Sachin Tendulkar in the same game. What car do you drive? It was garbage.

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The boys loved this. So the next day, all the fielders around the bat were making comments about things they wanted. It was that innocent. Why would I try to boast to Tendulkar anyway? I mean the bloke owns aeroplanes and fleets of cars.

The Gloves are Off: My Life in Cricket The Gloves are Off: My Life in Cricket
The Gloves are Off: My Life in Cricket The Gloves are Off: My Life in Cricket
The Gloves are Off: My Life in Cricket The Gloves are Off: My Life in Cricket
The Gloves are Off: My Life in Cricket The Gloves are Off: My Life in Cricket
The Gloves are Off: My Life in Cricket The Gloves are Off: My Life in Cricket
The Gloves are Off: My Life in Cricket The Gloves are Off: My Life in Cricket
The Gloves are Off: My Life in Cricket The Gloves are Off: My Life in Cricket
The Gloves are Off: My Life in Cricket The Gloves are Off: My Life in Cricket
The Gloves are Off: My Life in Cricket

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