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Brian Statham, Lancs, Eng (1950-1963) and Tony Greig, Sussex, Aus,(1965-1972)  Two Autographed  MCC England Australia Official Cards

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Brian Statham, Lancs, Eng (1950-1963) and Tony Greig, Sussex, Aus,(1965-1972) Two Autographed MCC England Australia Official Cards

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Brian Statham(1930 - 2000) and Tony Greig (1946 - 2012), Two Autographed MCC England Australia Official Cards

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Brian Statham Lancs, Eng, (1950 - 1963) and Tony Greig (), Two Autographed MCC England Australia Official Cards


Brian Statham was one of the best of all English fast bowlers, and beyond question the best-liked. A gentle man who had to be persuaded to bowl a bouncer, he was a mainstay of the England team in its vintage period between 1951 and 1963: he took 252 wickets in 70 Tests. His name will forever be coupled with that of Freddie Trueman, though they actually played together in only half his Tests. Statham's name always came second because he was the foil to Trueman's sabre - and the more reticent man. In cricketing folklore he is remembered primarily for his accuracy: "If they miss, I hit," he would say. This diminishes his astonishing skill. He was indeed accurate; so are many fast-medium bowlers. Statham kept his line and length at a very high pace indeed, comparable with all but the very fastest of Test match bowlers. A batsman hit by Statham - even on the foot, which was more likely than the head - knew all about it. In Statham's case the area around off stump was more a corridor of certainty than uncertainty, but if the ball hit the seam it jagged back in very sharply. The results were always formidable, and occasionally devasting.

Tony Greig was born in Queenstown, South Africa, son of a harsh and demanding Scottish father, he trialled for Sussex in 1965 as a teenager and prospered, then set himself the goal of representing England ­ following the route already described, in different circumstances, by the Cape Coloured Basil D'Oliveira. Considered good enough to represent Rest of the World when that ensemble toured Australia in 1971-2, he met his deadline by earning a Test cap for the subsequent home Ashes series, making half-centuries in each innings of his debut and taking five wickets.

In fact, for a mercurial character, he showed notable consistency and versatility: he made Test matches hundreds in fields as far flung as Bombay, Bridgetown and Brisbane, and against the likes of Lillee and Thomson, Roberts and Holding, Bedi and Chandra. He had a homespun style, bat aloft long before it became fashionable, based on long reach and booming drives, while his bowling depended on bounce, aggression and smarts: with a sideline in off-spin, he winkled out 13 wickets at Port-of-Spain to help England draw a series in the Carribean
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