Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Mike Brearley on the demon bowler Geoff Boycott

Geoff Boycott bowling at the death in a world cup match? It really did happen.

I once blogged my memories of the occasion - I was there - and recently posted a video of it.

Here's how Mike Brearley remembers the day:
It was in the final group match that Geoff Boycott’s bowling became invaluable. We had always planned that he would bowl – it was not an off-the-cuff gamble, and he had already taken two wickets against Australia. But against Pakistan he took the decisive last two just as they looked capable of winning. In the past, Geoffrey has been reluctant to bowl due to his back injury and his desire to apply himself to batting. But in this competition he visibly enjoyed it and was more useful than I could have ever hoped.
I once read that Brearley had a theory that batsman hated the idea of getting out to Boycott so much it made them play him with exaggerated care and slowed the scoring rate.

1 comment:

Paul Linford said...

Brearley fails to mention that on the strength of this performance, he gave Boycott a couple of overs in the final against West Indies only to see him carted all over the park by Viv Richards and Collis King.