Justin Langer might be in the spotlight these days for being the head coach of the Australian men’s cricket team but long before donning that role he was one of Australia’s finest Test openers, who went on to produce some memorable performances for the Baggy Greens during their years of domination in the 90s and first decade of 2000s.
But Langer had issues facing medium pace bowlers and the former opener has revealed how he sought help from the greatest batsman ever, Sir Donald Bradman, to overcome this weakness.
“As I am predominantly a back-foot player I wonder if you have any ideas on playing medium-pace bowlers,” Langer wrote in his letter as reported by cricket.com.au.
In his response, Bradman wrote, ““you flatter me by suggesting that an old octogenarian like me can help with your cricket.”
He went to mention that throught his playing career he had stayed away from smoking and drinking.
“I did not take any measures … other than live a normal and sensible non-smoking and non-drinking career,” the letter stated.
“You mention specially the medium pacers and the slight problem you have with them. Against them, I always started to move just before the delivery by going slightly back and across. In fact, the main basis of my batting was back play because I think this gives the batsman greater flexibility in many shots and taking the initiative than the forward player who becomes stuck in a grove,” Bradman said further while replying to Langer.
“As well as giving me valuable technical advice, Sir Donald told me he always played to have fun because he loved cricket. His letter to me is a treasured memory on my study wall. I see it every day when I’m at home,” cricket.com.au quoted Langer as saying.
Langer ended his career with 7,696 runs in the longest format of the game with 23 centuries and 30 half-centuries.
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