Left field

The Reuters global sports blog

Cricket’s model professional to declare at last

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In the Australian summer of 1982 Richie Benaud was approached by “a fair-haired angelic little lad of about 12″.

“Did you ever play cricket for Australia, Mr Benaud?” the cherub asked.

Benaud, a dashing all-rounder and one of Australia’s great captains, recalled he had not known whether to laugh or cry. “I did neither but merely said yes,” he replied.

A generation later, Benaud’s playing days have slipped further into obscurity. When he retires from television commentary in a year’s time, it will have been 46 years since he last stepped on to the field in a test match.

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