Cricket in heaven? I’d like to think so, following the passing, within just three days, of two of the greatest commentators of the game.
Tony Greig, dead, of a heart attack following a battle with cancer, at the age of 66.
Christopher Martin-Jenkins, dead, of terminal cancer, at the age of 67.
They were based on opposite sides of the globe, Tony in Sydney, Christopher in London. Yet they were on the same side when it came to cricket, their voices being wonderfully synonymous with the gentleman’s game.
Tony gave his expert views on Tests for Australia’s Channel Nine tv network; Christopher for the BBC, as well as previously writing for London’s Daily Telegraph and The Times.
I don’t intend to describe their spectacular careers, for much has already written about their lives here on earth. Which has left me with the fanciful thought that their love of the game has brought them together in another place – begging the question: do they play in heaven?
Just imagine…God is the umpire, St Peter a demon bowler, St Paul a cracking batsman, to name a few stand-outs among a congregation of greats from the past…Don Bradman, Len Hutton and a long list of others.
And there, in the commentary box are those savvy commentators, Tony and Christopher.
Just imagine the excitement they’d conjure up if England could take on Australia up there above the clouds, with Bradman and Hutton leading their sides out. Tony, despite being a former England captain, would have to be biased for the Aussies, while the smooth-talking Christopher would score his own verbal points for the Poms.
And when stumps were drawn, would they retire to a heavenly clubhouse, perhaps clink a glass, and share memories of their talented lives below?
It’s only a dream scenario, of course. But wouldn’t it be nice if it really was happening…?