Graeme Smith Already a Legend

November 6, 2012 in cricket

I have often been criticized for being too “Pro-Graeme Smith” for perhaps praising him a bit to much when he might sometimes not deserve it (or at least some think he does not deserve it) Often, around braai’s or during a general discussion the moment I bring up Graeme Smith people tend to look down and frown upon me. The reason for this is simple, you see South Africans just don’t appreciate the man as much as he should be appreciated and that’s a fact. I could also go as far as saying a country like England appreciates Smith more than we do – another fact. Graeme Smith’s early days as captain really screwed him, they called him arrogant, selfish and bossy, perhaps true at the time, but the Graeme Smith you see walking onto the field these days is South Africa’s and the worlds most astute captain the cricketing world has ever seen and for that credit must and shall be given.

 

It’s not just his batting record that must be praised, what with 8300 runs at an average of 50 with 25 hundreds as a left handed opening batsmen? I dare you to try and find a more prolific test opener that is still playing the game today. Add to that his Captain slaying ability and the fact that South Africa have never lost a test match when he has scored a century it all becomes clear that Graeme Smith is something special indeed.

Plenty more of this for Smith

 

One of the more standout qualities Biff has is his ability to perform under immense pressure and get his team over the line when it matters the most. Take his series winning 154 against England on an almost unplayable pitch when big names like Amla, Kallis and de Villiers could not even get past 30, or his majestic century against Australia where South Africa successfully chased 414, and who can forget his epic hundred in his hundredth test match earlier this year? His batting record speaks for itself, it not only proves what a classy player he is but also is the mark of a cricketing Giant.

 

He has recently been described as the greatest captain of his generation and some even argue that he’s the greatest cricket captain of all time. Yes with all these records one can safely say Graeme Craig Smith is one helluva player, what makes it even more remarkable is that the guy is still playing cricket for his country today, not only playing but captaining his country too, every time he walks on to the field in his whites he walks as the most capped test captain of all time, something South Africa can truly be proud of.

 

Yes he’s not just a great figure in the South African team, he’s a nations pride, or at least he should be, sadly the South African public turn a blind eye to Smith and all that he is, instead they slate him and bombard him with negative criticism for every little mistake he makes, well at least the minority, I am sure that most South African cricket fans have come to respect the mighty man and I have no doubt he once again will lift carry a nations expectations on his shoulders and stand and deliver against the Aussies and once again prove himself because unfortunately Smith would have never truly proved himself to this nation.

 

In my mind Graeme Smith is already a legend, and if not one now then surely will be one when he eventually retires from the game, and when he does, boy will he deserve it.

17 responses to Graeme Smith Already a Legend

  1. Nice post. I’ve heard that they want to make a move about Biff. “Gone in sixty seconds 2″. I just don’t know what the movie will be about? Some of his innings at the crease and/or buffet table?

  2. I was never truely a big fan of Smith, and to be honest at times I couldn’t stand him and wanted him out of the team. He went through a slump of form (as does every other cricketer) and I was hoping they’d drop him.
    One of my criticisms of him (and I’m sure most other Biff bashers too) was that he was always a very conservative captain. When he was captaining the ODI team, we’d be chasing a huge total and our batters would put put along and hope our tail enders smash a couple of sixes at the end to pull it through. It was enough to make my pull my hair out, and our team would do it time and time again. At that stage Smith (apart from his batting sometimes) wasnt an attacking minded captain.

    But I’ve actually come to like old Biff. And he certainly has deserved my respect. And I agree with you that he is actually one of the greatest captains of all time. Whether you like him or not, he deserves respect. I think Gary Kirsten has had a very positive effect on Smith. He was much more attack-minded in England, which was a good thing, otherwise we could’ve ended up drawing the series again.

    Now all he needs to do, is spit that gum out and klap the aussies…

    • Good point regarding Kirsten having a positive impact on Smith, I think you are spot on, both his declarations in England were very attacking, not a smith like move but good to see it happen

  3. great blog mate!! i have to be honest that there were times when i wasn’t biff’s biggest fan but i always had & always will respect the man for what he’s already achieved & what’s still to come for SA’s greatest captain (so far).

  4. Haven’t been on this site in ages…

    I think as a pure batsmen Graeme has probably done more for South African cricket than Jacques Kallis.

    As captain I’ve always liked him, but never as much as in the last series against England. That declaration in the drawn test was pure magic.

  5. I am with you Sherifff. I have always seen the value that he brings, and understood that at 22 he was too young to be captaining an international cricket team. I would hate to divulge what I was up to at 22. He has proved his critics wrong with his actions, and deserves a lot more than he gets. A legend indeed. I am grateful to have been able to watch him play and lead our country so well.

  6. WHAT???Legend??? Here are legends…..Muhamid Ali, Michael Schumaker,Sashin Tendulker,Lionel Messi,Valentino Rossi,Federer,world best al rounder…Jauques Kallis,…And you say he is in the same class as the above??? A LEGEND???
    Wake up!! what are you chewing??

    • Ok so you say Kallis is the best allrounder in the world, yes fair enough I agree, so based on that he is a Legend? yes agreed. at the same token Graeme Smith is the best Test opener around and is probably the best captain the sport has ever seen. thats stuff of legend if you ask me

      • Actually Jacques Kallis is basically a legend because he sports one of the best records (batting & overall) in international cricket ever. Wisden cricket actually named him along with Ricky Ponting and Sachin Tendulkar as one of the three greatest modern players ever to play test cricket.

  7. He has been great throughout his career. His personality has not done him any favours at times but I think he has passed that point. Above all I say pay repsect where it is due.

  8. Excellent article, couldn’t agree more, Biff is massive to the Protea’s!

  9. Can someone please point out exactly what did Biff do to have so many haters? aside from not coming back after the world cup (which I find understandable) he has not really done anything wrong. He might have seemed a little abrassive and arrogant when he was 22 but I put that down to being young and over eager to do well in his job.
    What I can and do tell people is that he is a great captain and we will only realise how astute he is when he retires. We can already see the leadership gap that is created in the T20 team. AB made high school mistakes in the recent T20 WC.
    Biff’s record should be all that people look at – He is one of the best openers in modern times – Measure him up against Mathew Hayden and you will see just how good he really is. Hayden’s scored 8625 Runs at an ave of 50.73 in, with 30 hundreds and 29 fifties in 103 tests. Biff’s record is 8314 runs at an ave of 49.79 with 25 hundreds and 34 fifties in 102 tests. Add to the fact that he has had to captain his country then it should be clear in anyone’s books that, that is an impressive record. For the life of me I just can’t understand why Saffa’s just don’t see that.

  10. I couldn’t agree more with this blog… A lot of people love crucifying Graeme Smith when he fails as a batsman or when SA loses. Prime examples are when we lost the World Cups and T20 World Cups under his captaincy but when we lost this year’s T20 World Cup under AB’s captaincy nobody said anything about how bad AB was. These same people never seem to congratulate Smith when he does well…

  11. Great post. Smith is a true legend. the best batsman to play for SA

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