Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Michael Clarke reminds us of the meaning of the Baggy Green

'Clarke celebrated his century quietly with an intensely expressive face after coming through a bouncer burst from round the stumps on 98.'  ( Cricinfo )

The reaction was every bit as touching as the one seen from Dave Warner on day 1, and Steve Smith prior to his Captain reaching the landmark on day 2. All three reeking of respect and love for their fallen mate Phillip Hughes. Clarke took the meaning a bit further, on a day when he staggered onto the pitch in obvious discomfort from his back, and associated hamstring. 

The expression on reaching his ton told all that this was not the time or place to put his needs first 

His only thought was of the meaning of the revered Baggy Green that he dons as Skipper, and upholding its traditions. Of the privilege to wear it, and how profoundly felt, it is in the hearts of all Australians. It is a true testimony to us as a race of people, our mate ship, courage under fire, and the fact that we never take a backwards step

In Clarke's case, it as if he has spent most of the Summer under a standing eight count. Where, all are waiting for him to succumb, and be taken out. But, he just soldiers on, survives and endures,  then comes back with decisive blows of his own.

The loss of the man he described as his 'little brother' in Phillip Hughes should have been that last killer blow. Quite to the contrary, no knock down, just him rising, and lifting all with him, despite the purgatory type emotional state the tragedy cast him in as well as the physical duress that one could see etched all over his face.

With all the conjecture over him after retiring hurt yesterday, all thought it would end his test, and some even went so far to say his summer was over, and, maybe even his career

How do you think it made all Australian's feel when he walked out under real duress today...........

Patriotism on steroids, tears flowing down our faces, while covered in chicken skin because of how he touched us.

Conversely, how did he make the Indian's feel?

The psychological blow was palpable after their spirits were lifted by taking  late wickets on day one. Letting them harbour thoughts of maybe dismissing Australia under 400 to keep all three results still possible. They knew Clarke would not bat again after he was in a crumpled heap a mere 24 hours before. So, when he did, it struck at them deep. Making them question how can they compete, let alone challenge a team led by a man with such a resilience, and grim resolve to just get through obvious Hell, and make a difference.

Things got worse for the tourists when he nigh on taunted them by the runs he struck despite all of them knowing he was struggling to assume even a batting stance

Defining, in so many ways

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