The most loved sport in India is cricket. Right from the olden days of 5-day test matches, till the present T20 format, cricket has charmed and enchanted many generations of Indians. The country has seen great cricket icons, like Mr. C.K.Naidu, Nawab Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi, Ajit wadekar, Sunil Gavaskar, and Sachin Tendulkar. But the greatest batsman of all time can be none other than, Sir Don Bradman, the Australian batsman, who is loved and revered as a God of cricket. His cricketing career spanned for 20 years and was full of action, thrill, and super surprises.
THE BIRTH OF THE LEGEND
Sir Donald George Bradman was born as the youngest son to Emily and George Bradman on 27th August 1908, at Cootamundra. When Donald was two and a half years old, the family shifted to Bowral. Young Donald spent his childhood at Bowral.
Donald has his schooling done from Bowral High School. His father once took him to watch the Ashes Test Match at Sydney cricket ground. The Ashes test match is played between England and Australia and it was here that young Donald got inspired and formed an ambition of playing the Ashes match in SCG someday.
This spark of ambition eventually grew into a roaring flame and Donald became Sir Don Bradman. He was Don to his family and friends and lovingly, the world also called him Don.
When he was a young lad, he practiced batting by hitting a golf ball repeatedly onto the curved brick foundation of the water tank with a stump. The golf ball would rebound too fast and because of the curved wall, it was impossible to guess, in which direction the ball would go. For the bat, he had a narrow stump. Practicing with such meager facilities, with the greatest concentration, and determination, soon his movement and responses became very quick to hit the oncoming ball accurately back into the wall.
This laid the foundation for his signature batting style, confidence, accuracy, and run rate. At the tender age of 19, Don Bradman made his debut in first-class cricket. His debut match was played at the Adelaide Oval for the NSW (New South Wales) team. This was a moment of great elation not only for him but also for his family and friends. In his debut match, he scored 118 runs.
He had difficult patches in his life. His performance at the Test Debut in Brisbane was a great anti-climax. He could score just 18 and 1 in the respective innings and Australia had lost with 675 runs. But Don Bradman did not lose heart and in subsequent matches, he regained his form and confidence and scored tons. His test average of 99.94 is unbeaten to date.
In March 1949, Donald Bradman has bestowed the Knighthood and came to be called Sir Don Bradman thereafter. He is the only Australian cricket player in the world of cricket to be honored so.