Omar Henry’s top three batsmen
Graeme Pollock, Barry Richards and Peter Kirsten are considered three of the greatest batsmen the game has ever seen, even though they played less than 40 Test matches between them.
South Africa’s Apartheid policy of the time resulted in an international sports boycott, meaning these three batting geniuses - along with countless other players - were deprived of the opportunity to showcase their skills on the international stage.
Another player who fell afoul of this situation was Omar Henry, a brilliant left-arm spinner who bowled more than 34 000 First-Class and List A deliveries for the likes of Western Province, Boland, Free State and Scotland during his 20 years as a professional.
Henry, who will serve as an ambassador for the Evergreen Lifestyle-sponsored Over-50s World Cup in Cape Town in March, had the fortune - or misfortune, depending on your point of view - of bowling to, and playing with, the above-mentioned trio. He explains what made each player so special …
“Pollock was phenomenal. Never mind bowling, you didn’t want to even field in the covers when he was batting! You were hoping that he was going to hit the ball in the gap and not straight at you. I would rather go and fetch it, but to try and stop it was a nightmare. He was unbelievable, and then to play with him, to share a crease with him, that was an even better education.”
“Richards was just so destructive. He had more time than I had ever seen in any other batsman, so much so that he could turn the bat and play three shots in the time you or I had to play one. And he’d play all those shots better than we would!”
“The guy that I enjoyed watching was Kirsten. He made scoring runs look so easy. Before you knew it he had 50, and he’d only hit two boundaries. The way he would manipulate balls through gaps and his running between the wickets, he was just incredible … an absolute master of his trade.”
Image courtesy of MatchPixSA
About Evergreen Lifestyle
Established in 2008, Evergreen Lifestyle is South Africa’s premium retirement brand with seven operating villages in the Western Cape and Gauteng, and a further six in the pipeline. The business began with a vision to change the retirement landscape in South Africa, offering a partnership for life based on five key pillars: physical security, financial peace of mind, continuous care, a sense of community and exceptional hospitality.
You’ll find Evergreen’s award-winning retirement villages in the most beautiful parts of the country, at the end of sun-dappled country lanes, perched on majestic mountain slopes, and within walking distance of our beaches, rivers, and wetlands. And you’ll find vibrant fun-loving communities enjoying the finer things in life – like good food, great company, lasting friendships, and a sense of belonging that is enabled by the resort style facilities and amenities on offer.