Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here

Home > News >

Tony Greig transformed cricket: Former England greats

image_20121230111028

Ian Botham and Nasser Hussain said that Tony Greig (above) revolutionised the game and made the world realise that cricketers had to get paid © Getty Images

London: Dec 30, 2012

Former England captains Ian Botham and Nasser Hussain have led the tributes to their late predecessor Tony Greig, who died on Saturday at the age of 66.

The South Africa-born Greig, a swashbuckling middle-order batsman and medium-fast bowler, passed away at his home in Sydney, two months after being diagnosed with lung cancer.

He had been working as a television commentator in Australia since retiring from cricket in 1979.

Greig became England captain in 1975 and led the national team for two years before leaving to help launch the controversial World Series Cricket (WSC) tournament created by late Australian media tycoon Kerry Packer.

His defection created a storm, but Hussain, England captain from 1999 to 2003, said it represented a landmark moment in the sport’s evolution.

“It was huge. It was an amateur game before, with players just playing for the love of the game,” Hussain told Sky Sports News.

“But because of Tony Greig and Kerry Packer and the World Series, suddenly the world realised that they had to start paying their cricketers.

“One-Day cricket became much more dramatic, with the coloured clothing and the white balls, and another form of cricket was invented.”

He added: “He was very brave, he did take people on and wasn’t someone who would just go with the norm. He wasn’t establishment.

“He was a great England captain and he transformed the game. It is very sad news and very sudden news as well.”

All-rounder and former Test captain Botham said: “He was my first ever captain for England. I’m very sad and very emotional.

“He was flamboyant and extroverted, faster than light, and he made things happen. He was an amazing guy and so full of energy.

“He changed cricket for everybody as we know it now. The game suddenly leaped forward and players started to paid more substantial amounts.

“He revolutionised the game and it had to be done. The players of today have a lot to be thankful for in Tony and Kerry Packer.”

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) also paid tribute to the father of four.

“Tony Greig was an extremely talented all-round cricketer and captain,” said ECB chief executive David Collier.

“He was a giant of a man who played a major role in the changing face of cricket during the 1970s.

“He will be fondly remembered for his informed commentaries, his embracing of innovation to enhance the game including day and night cricket, as well as his performances on the field of play.”

ECB chairman Giles Clarke added: “Tony Greig was a magnificent and fearless cricketer capable of changing games with ball or bat.

“He led England brilliantly in India and rejuvenated the side. He was a determined supporter of players’ rights in his later years.”

Present-day England wicketkeeper Matt Prior expressed his sadness on Twitter, writing: “Can’t believe one of my heroes Tony Greig has passed away.

“One of the greatest voices in cricket and will be sorely missed.”

Stuart Broad, the captain of England’s Twenty20 team, wrote simply: “#RIPTonyGreig”.

Greig played 58 Tests for England between 1972 and 1977, scoring 3,599 runs with eight centuries at 40.43, and captured 141 wickets at 32.20.

He captained England in 14 Tests and also played in 22 one-day internationals.

Read all related stories to demise of Tony Grieg

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 17, 2014 (20:00 IST)   at Sharjah

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 18, 2014 (16:00 IST)   at Abu Dhabi

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 18, 2014 (20:00 IST)   at Abu Dhabi

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 19, 2014 (16:00 IST)   at Dubai

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 19, 2014 (20:00 IST)   at Dubai

More

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 16, 2014  at Abu Dhabi

Kolkata Knight Riders won by 41 runs

Womens World T20, 2014

Apr 6, 2014  at Dhaka

Australia Women won by 6 wkts

T20 WC 2014

Apr 6, 2014  at Dhaka

Sri Lanka won by 6 wkts

Womens World T20, 2014

Apr 4, 2014  at Dhaka

England Women won by 9 wkts

T20 WC 2014

Apr 4, 2014  at Dhaka

India won by 6 wkts

Photos

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge play cricket

Videos

Prince William, Kate Middleton meet McGrath, Ellyse

Mumbai Indians (MI) vs Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) Live Cricket Score IPL 2014: KKR beat MI by 41 runs in tournament opener

Rajasthan Royals in IPL 2014 will look to keep integrity intact, says Shane Watson

IPL 2014: Life after Sachin Tendulkar

IPL 2014: Kolkata Knight Riders’ all-rounders hold key to success

IPL: What value does a franchisee owner bring to the side by sitting in the dugout?

Australia BCCI England India IPL IPL 7 IPL 2014 Kolkata Knight Riders Lasith Malinga Moments in history Mumbai Indians Mumbai Indians vs Kolkata Knight Riders Royal Challengers Bangalore Sachin Tendulkar

IPL 2014 partners with Twitter to bring real-time experience to fans

Sunil Narine, Jacques Kallis star in Kolkata Knight Riders’ 41-run victory against Mumbai Indians in IPL 2014

Mumbai Indians (MI) vs Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), IPL 2014: Mumbai Indians 113/5 in 18 overs

Mumbai Indians (MI) vs Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), IPL 2014: Mumbai Indians 95/2 in 15 overs

IPL 2014: Sunil Gavaskar meets team captains and former players

IPL 2014: Begins yet another Controversy Premier League

Rajasthan Royals in IPL 2014 will look to keep integrity intact, says Shane Watson

IPL 2014: Life after Sachin Tendulkar

IPL 2009: Looking at events that led to T20 extravaganza being held in South Africa

IPL 2014: Top 10 Indian youngsters to watch out for

Fan of the Day

Suraj Gowda

Suraj Gowda

622 Posts | 7 Fans

Video Highlights: Virat Kohli's 77 during India vs Sri Lanka ICC World T20 2014 final at Dhaka

IPL 2014: 5 tips to use your smartphones to click pictures in a stadium

How did Kangana Ranaut redefine phasion, fun and gun in Revolver Rani?

Bengali film Jaatishwar bags four National Awards

Know your medical terms: Edema

Sunil Narine, Jacques Kallis star in Kolkata Knight Riders’ 41-run victory against Mumbai Indians in IPL 2014

IPL 2014: How does the umpire cam work?

Stay healthy with these 8 summer foods (Gallery)

IPL 2014 partners with Twitter to bring real-time experience to fans

Also on cricketcountry.com