Brad Hogg Still A Game Breaker For Australia
Australia is under scrutiny after their T20 World ranking slumped on the eve of the ICC World T20 tournament in Sri Lanka. For all of our success in the other formats of the game, mastery of the shorter version remains a challenge.
One player who I strongly believe can contribute to turning things around is the evergreen Brad Hogg.
In 2003 the cricket world was in shock when Australia’s trump card Shane Warne was sent home from South Africa. I didn’t think we could win the tournament without a world-class spinner.
What I failed to acknowledge was the value of the grinning assassin from Western Australia and his desire to prove himself on the world stage.
Obviously Hogg was not the main reason for us winning the World Cup in 2003. Australia was at the peak of their powers with fast bowlers Lee, McGrath and Bichel doing an outstanding job with the ball.
The batting line-up was also world class in its own right with the likes of Ponting, Gilchrist, Hayden, Martyn, Lehmann, Symonds and Bevan all providing valuable contributions with the willow.
But what we mustn’t undervalue is how effective the wrist spinner was in playing his role with the ball.
In my view, this was a watershed tournament for Hogg and his reputation as a spinner has grown since then with his ODI numbers a testament to this.
Why do I feel so confident he can make his mark at the ICC T20 World Cup?
He looks a rejuvenated man after his premature exit from the international scene in 2008. Most importantly, I feel he has unfinished business along with the drive and desire to show us all again the many qualities he has to offer Australian cricket.
Hogg brings more than handy spin bowling to the team, he also has a contagious enthusiasm that rubs off on those around him.
Whether or not Australia are deemed to be successful in this tournament. I for one am thankful that we have the privilege of watching a veteran roll the arm over and hopefully claim his share of scalps while wearing the green and gold.