Comeback On Track
“Here he was, in his 50th year, a successful television boss and New Zealand sporting icon embarking on a comeback he hopes will see him end up playing the first-class game again,” The Telegraph’s chief sports correspondent Ian Chadband writes. “Papa Crowe at Papatoetoe? Having to carry the team scorebook? Forced to warm his hands with a cup of coffee on a bone-chilling morning? Deeply unimpressed at the kids making excessive appeals for his wicket as he ground out a painstaking 15 not out? Was he stark raving mad? ‘Call it a long-shot experiment,’ Crowe says. ‘To see if a 50-year-old can still wield a bat.’ His main sights are set on playing in next March’s English season curtain raiser for the MCC against champions Lancashire in Abu Dhabi. ‘[As for] today’s equipment? Unbelievable. I dread to think of the damage that Ian Botham and Viv Richards would have done with them.” Auckland-born Crowe was a Wisden Cricketer of the Year in 1985, and was credited as one of the “best young batsmen in the world”.