Rod Marsh

Last updated

Rod Marsh
Personal information
Full nameRodney William Marsh
Born (1947-11-04) 4 November 1947 (age 73)
Armadale, Western Australia
NicknameBacchus, Iron Gloves
BattingLeft-handed
BowlingRight-arm off break
Role Wicket-keeper
Relations Graham Marsh (brother)
Daniel Marsh (son)
International information
National side
Test debut(cap  249)27 November 1970 v  England
Last Test6 January 1984 v  Pakistan
ODI debut(cap  7)5 January 1971 v  England
Last ODI12 February 1984 v  West Indies
Domestic team information
YearsTeam
1968/69–1983/84 Western Australia
Career statistics
Competition Test ODI FC LA
Matches9692257140
Runs scored3,6331,22511,0672,119
Batting average 26.5120.0831.1723.03
100s/50s3/160/412/550/9
Top score1326623699*
Balls bowled72014223
Wickets 010
Bowling average 84.00
5 wickets in innings 0
10 wickets in match0
Best bowling1/0
Catches/stumpings 343/12120/4803/66182/6
Source: Cricinfo, 20 November 2008

Rodney William Marsh MBE (born 4 November 1947) is an Australian former professional cricketer who played as a wicketkeeper for the Australian national cricket team.

Contents

Marsh had a Test career spanning from the 1970–71 to the 1983–84 Australian season. In 96 Tests, he set a world record of 355 wicketkeeping dismissals, the same number his pace bowling Western Australian teammate Dennis Lillee achieved with the ball. The pair were known for their bowler-wicketkeeper partnership, which yielded 95 Test wickets, a record for any such combination. They made their test debuts in the same series and retired from test cricket in the same match. Wisden stated that "Few partnerships between bowler and wicket-keeper have had so profound an impact on the game." [1]

Marsh had a controversial start to his Test career, selected on account of his batting abilities. Sections of the media lampooned Marsh's glovework, dubbing him "Iron Gloves" after sloppy catching in his debut Test. His keeping improved over time and by the end of his career he was regarded as one of the finest in the history of the sport. He was widely regarded for his sense of team discipline, in particular after Bill Lawry controversially declared the Australian first innings closed in the Fifth Test of the 1970–71 series at the MCG with Marsh eight runs short of a century. [2]

In 2009, Marsh was inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame. [3]

Early years

Marsh played backyard cricket with his older brother Graham, who became a professional golfer and won eleven times on the European Tour. Both brothers represented WA at cricket at schoolboy level. Marsh played his first competitive match at the age of eight for the Armadale under-16s. He kept wicket from the start, but batting was his strength. At thirteen he captained the state schoolboys' team, and joined the West Perth district club.

When he debuted for West Perth's first XI he was a specialist batsman, as WA wicketkeeper Gordon Becker also represented the club. In order to further his keeping, Marsh joined the University club. Marsh made his first-class debut for WA, again as a specialist batsman, against the touring West Indies in 1968–69. He had an unusual match, scoring 0 and 104. [1]

Test career

Marsh replaced the retired Becker for the 1969–70 season. At the time, Australia was touring India and South Africa with Brian Taber and Ray Jordon as the team's wicketkeepers. In the autumn of 1970, an Australian second team toured New Zealand with John MacLean as wicketkeeper. Therefore, Marsh was behind these players in the pecking order. However, he was a controversial selection for the first Test of the 1970–71 Ashes series, replacing Taber. His superior batting had won him the position.

The media was quick to criticise Marsh's glovework in his early career, dubbing him "Iron Gloves" after he missed a number of catches. [4] Even on his debut in the First Test in the 1970–71 Ashes series he took four catches in his first innings. His batting proved invaluable on a number of occasions and in the Fifth Test, he equalled the record for the highest Test innings by an Australian keeper, set by Don Tallon. The end of the innings was controversial; the captain Bill Lawry declared with Marsh eight runs short of a century [5] so he could get an extra hour of bowling before stumps. When questioned by the press about his lost chance to make an historic century Marsh said he had gained forty runs instead of missing eight as he thought Lawry should have declared an hour earlier. [6] Marsh later admitted that he was underprepared as a wicketkeeper, but he learned from watching his English counterpart Alan Knott. [1] He and Knott did, however, concede the same number of byes in the series: 44.

Marsh became an integral part of the team as the side improved during the 1972 tour of England. He became the first Australian keeper to hit a century by scoring 118 in the first Test against Pakistan at Adelaide in 1972–73. He also hit 236 against the tourists for WA, the best score of his career. Playing a key role in Australia's series victories over England and the West Indies in the series of 1974–75 and 1975–76, Marsh made many acrobatic dives to catch balls delivered by Dennis Lillee and Jeff Thomson. He took 45 dismissals in those two series, including a world-record 26 catches in six Tests against the West Indies. [1]

Marsh scored an unbeaten 110 in the second innings of the Centenary Test against England in 1977, becoming the first Australian wicketkeeper to score a Test century against England. In the same match he passed Wally Grout's Australian wicket-keeping record of 187 Test dismissals. [1] He scored a further 16 half centuries. In first class matches, he accumulated 11 centuries including a best of 236, aggregating more than 10000 runs in his career. [5]

When the breakaway World Series Cricket was formed, Marsh had no hesitation in signing for Kerry Packer. He claimed 54 dismissals in 16 Supertests. Upon his return to traditional international cricket in 1979–80, his age did not affect his keeping ability. On the 1981 tour of England, he took 23 dismissals to become the first wicketkeeper to take 100 dismissals in Ashes Tests, broke Knott's world record in 22 fewer Tests and passed 3000 runs in Test cricket. [1] In 1982–83, his second last season, he took 28 dismissals against England, including nine and eight in the Second and Third Test respectively. [5] His batting form fell away towards the end of his Test career, his last 22 Tests yielding only 589 runs at an average of 19.63.

Style

Powerfully built, Marsh was regarded as an all rounder for the majority of his career. Coupled with his short stature, his power suited him to the task of keeping wicket. Despite his bulk, which forced him to work heavily on reducing his weight in his early career, he had fast feet movement, combined with fast anticipation and reflexes which allowed him to cover more ground. He raised the role of wicketkeeper to a more prominent status in a team with his acrobatic diving, raucous appeals and habit of throwing a ball high into the air upon completing a dismissal. As the wicketkeeper, he made himself the focal point in the field and attempted to extract higher standards of concentration from both himself and his teammates. [5] Speaking of his understanding with Lillee, he said "I've played with him so much now that most of the time I know what he is going to do before he has bowled" Marsh said, "I know from the way he runs up; the angle, the speed, where he hits the crease, where the ball is going to be." [1]

At state level, Marsh was a noted captain, leading the state to a Sheffield Shield and Gillette Cup double in both forms of the game in 1976–77. He had nine wins and seven losses in 20 Shield matches as captaincy, and seven from nine matches in the limited overs competition. [5]

Marsh was an effective player in ODI matches, contributing as a keeper and a lower order batsmen. His power and aggression was put to good use in the closing overs, when he could score at a rapid rate. In one match against New Zealand in 1980–81 against Lance Cairns at the Adelaide Oval, he struck 26 from the final over, with three sixes and two fours, before falling on the final ball. [5]

Coaching and other non-playing duties

Marsh was a cricket commentator for Channel Nine's international matches between 1986–1990 and 1996–1998.

He was a coach at the Australian Cricket Academy in Adelaide since its inception and was its director from 1990 to 2001. Some of his former proteges include Australian internationals wicket-keeper-batsman Adam Gilchrist and fast bowlers Jason Gillespie and Brett Lee [5]

Marsh was the Director of the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) national academy from October 2001 to September 2005. During this time, England went from being a mediocre team to challenging Australia as the best team in Test cricket and in 2005, they regained the Ashes after 16 years in Australian hands with a 2–1 win. Marsh later criticised the ECB for releasing Troy Cooley, who had trained England's four pronged pace battery, and attacked Duncan Fletcher's selection of Geraint Jones as the wicket keeper ahead of Chris Read. [7] He once declared his cricketing allegiance to England and was at one time a selector for the English team. [8]

In August 2006 the South Australian Cricket Association announced Marsh had been appointed in a consultancy role to undertake a review of cricket throughout South Australia. Marsh had also worked with the Global Cricket Academy in Dubai. [9]

Marsh was appointed chairman of selectors for Cricket Australia on 2 May 2014, replacing John Inverarity. [10] He was previously Cricket Australia's manager of elite coaching development.

On 16 November 2016 Marsh resigned as chairman of selectors, after a disastrous series defeat to South Africa. [11]

Honours

Marsh was made a Member of the Order of the British Empire in 1981 and inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame in 1985. [12] [13] He received an Australian Sports Medal in 2000 and a Centenary Medal in 2001. [14] [15]

In 2005, he was inducted into the Cricket Hall of Fame by the CA. [16]

Notes

  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Cricinfo
  2. Cricket Archive Scorecard: Australia v England, Melbourne Cricket Ground, (21–26 January 1971.
  3. Cricinfo (2 January 2009). "ICC and FICA launch Cricket Hall of Fame". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  4. "Golden gloves". ESPN Cricinfo. Retrieved 6 November 2017.
  5. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Cashman; Franks; Maxwell; Sainsbury; Stoddart; Weaver; Webster (1997). The A-Z of Australian cricketers. pp. 180–194.
  6. Ian Chappell, Test Match Special, British Broadcasting Corporation, 11 July 2009
  7. Cricinfo – Marsh slams ECB decision to let Cooley go
  8. Cricinfo – Marsh says he's '100% English'
  9. Cricinfo – Marsh signs on as high performance director
  10. "Rod Marsh replaces John Inverarity as Australian cricket's chairman of selectors". ABC. 2 May 2014.
  11. "Australian cricket's chairman of selectors Rod Marsh resigns" . Retrieved 20 November 2016.
  12. "Marsh, Rodney William, MBE". It's an Honour. Retrieved 29 October 2013.
  13. "Rod Marsh". Sport Australia Hall of Fame. Retrieved 25 September 2020.
  14. "Marsh, Rodney William: Australian Sports Medal". It's an Honour. Retrieved 29 October 2013.
  15. "Marsh, Rodney: Centenary Medal". It's an Honour. Retrieved 29 October 2013.
  16. Cricinfo Staff (30 January 2005). "Marsh and Hill in Hall of Fame". ESPN. Retrieved 24 July 2019.

Related Research Articles

Gregory Stephen Chappell is a former cricketer who represented Australia at international level in both Tests and One-Day Internationals (ODI). The second of three brothers to play Test cricket, Chappell was the pre-eminent Australian batsman of his time who allied elegant stroke making to fierce concentration. An exceptional all round player who bowled medium pace and, at his retirement, held the world record for the most catches in Test cricket, Chappell's career straddled two eras as the game moved toward a greater level of professionalism after the WSC schism.

Wicket-keeper Fielding position in cricket

The wicket-keeper in the sport of cricket is the player on the fielding side who stands behind the wicket or stumps being watchful of the batsman and ready to take a catch, stump the batsman out and run out a batsman when occasion arises. The wicket-keeper is the only member of the fielding side permitted to wear gloves and external leg guards. The role of the keeper is governed by Law 27 of the Laws of Cricket.

Dennis Lillee Australian cricketer

Dennis Keith Lillee, is a former Australian cricketer rated as the "outstanding fast bowler of his generation". Lillee was known for his fiery temperament, 'never-say-die' attitude and popularity with the fans.

Mark Boucher South African cricketer

Mark Verdon Boucher is a South African cricket coach and former cricketer who played all three formats of the game. Boucher is regarded as one of the best wicket-keeper batsmen of all time, and holds the record for the most Test dismissals by a wicket-keeper, with 532 catches and 555 total dismissals.

Ian Healy Australian cricketer

Ian Andrew Healy AO is an Australian former international cricketer who played for Queensland domestically. A specialist wicketkeeper and useful right-hand middle-order batsman, he made an unheralded entry to international cricket in 1988, after only six first-class games. His work ethic and combativeness was much needed by an Australian team. Over the next decade, Healy was a key member of the side as it enjoyed a sustained period of success. By the time of his retirement, Healy held the world record for most Test dismissals by a wicket-keeper.

William Morris Lawry is a former cricketer who played for Victoria and Australia. He captained Australia in 25 Tests, winning nine, losing eight and drawing eight, and led Australia in the inaugural One Day International match, played in 1971.

MS Dhoni Indian cricket player

Mahendra Singh Dhoni, is a former Indian international cricketer who captained the Indian national team in limited-overs formats from 2007 to 2017 and in Test cricket from 2008 to 2014. Under his captaincy, India won the inaugural 2007 ICC World Twenty20, the 2010 and 2016 Asia Cups, the 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup and the 2013 ICC Champions Trophy. A right-handed middle-order batsman and wicket-keeper, Dhoni is one of the highest run scorers in One Day Internationals (ODIs) with more than 10,000 runs scored and is considered an effective "finisher" in limited-overs formats. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest wicket-keeper batsmen and captains in the history of the game. He was also the first wicket-keeper to effect 100 stumpings in ODI cricket.

Lee Germon New Zealand cricketer

Lee Kenneth Germon is a former New Zealand cricketer, wicket-keeper and former captain. He played for the provinces of Canterbury and Otago and is the most successful Canterbury cricket captain of the modern era. He was made captain of New Zealand on his Test debut and he holds the unofficial record for the most runs (70), from a single over in first-class cricket.

Don Tallon Australian cricketer

Donald Tallon was an Australian cricketer who played 21 Test matches as a wicket-keeper between 1946 and 1953. He was widely regarded by his contemporaries as Australia's finest ever wicket-keeper and one of the best in Test history, with an understated style, an ability to anticipate the flight, length and spin of the ball and an efficient stumping technique. Tallon toured England as part of Don Bradman's Invincibles of 1948 and was recognised as one of the Wisden Cricketers of the Year in 1949 for his performances during that season. During his Test career, Tallon made 58 dismissals comprising 50 catches and 8 stumpings.

Wayne Bentley Phillips is a former Australian cricketer, who played in 27 Test matches and 48 One Day Internationals (ODIs) between 1982 and 1986 as a batsman and wicket-keeper. He played for South Australia between 1978 and 1991

The tour by the Australian cricket team in England in 1981 included the 51st Ashes series of Test matches between Australia and England. Despite having been 1–0 down after two Tests, England won the next three Tests to finish 3–1 victors, thus retaining the Ashes. The series is popularly known as Botham's Ashes, owing to the remarkable performances of Ian Botham with both bat and ball.

Centenary Test refers to two matches of Test cricket played between the English cricket team and the Australian cricket team, the first in 1977 and the second in 1980. These matches were played to mark the 100th anniversaries of the first Test cricket matches played in Australia (1877) and in England (1880) respectively. Neither match was played for The Ashes.

Brad Haddin Australian cricketer

Bradley James Haddin, is a former Australian cricketer, vice-captain and coach who represented Australia in all three forms of international cricket. He played domestically for New South Wales as a right-handed batsman and wicket-keeper. Haddin was a member of the Australian World cup winning squad at the 2015 Cricket World Cup and played for the Sydney Sixers in the Big Bash League.

Denis Lindsay

Denis Thomson Lindsay played 19 Tests for South Africa between 1963 and 1970. His outstanding series was against Australia in 1966–67, when he scored 606 runs in seven innings, including three centuries, took 24 catches as wicketkeeper and conceded only six byes.

Maxwell George O'Connell was an Australian Test cricket match umpire.

Kevin John Wright is an Australian former Test cricketer.

Wriddhiman Saha Indian cricketer

Wriddhiman Prasanta Saha is an Indian international cricketer who plays for Indian national cricket team and first class matches domestically for Bengal. He is also the first cricketer to score a century in an Indian Premier League final. He plays for Sunrisers Hyderabad in the Indian Premier League. He is a wicket-keeper batsman.

1970–71 Ashes series

The 1970–71 Ashes series consisted of seven cricket Test matches, each of five days with six hours play each day and eight ball overs. It formed part of the MCC tour of Australia in 1970–71 and the matches outside the Tests were played in the name of the Marylebone Cricket Club. Ray Illingworth's England team beat Bill Lawry's Australians 2–0 and regained the Ashes, the only full Test series in Australia in which the home team failed to win a Test. "The Momentous Series of 1970–71" was pivotal in cricket history and "essentially ushered in the modern period of Test cricket". It was the first Test series to have more than five Tests and the first One Day International in cricket history was played in Melbourne; like the first test match in history it was won by Australia.

The 1970-71 Australians lost 2-0 to the touring England team in the 1970-71 Ashes series. Australia had not lost a home Test series since 1954-55, but had suffered a heavy 4-0 defeat in South Africa in 1969-70 which had affected their confidence. On paper they should have had a good team, and E.W. Swanton reckoned they were favourites to hold on to The Ashes, but Rod Marsh, Dennis Lillee and Greg Chappell had yet to mature and Bill Lawry, Garth McKenzie and John Gleeson were at the end of their careers. In more fortunate circumstances the senior players could have eased the newcomers into the team, but Ray Illingworth was a captain who exploited every weakness and they did not get the chance. Their cause was not helped by the selectors Sir Donald Bradman, Sam Loxton and Neil Harvey who chose nineteen different players in the series, nine of them debutants, and continuously chopped and changed the team which did not allow it to settle.

Peter Handscomb Australian cricketer

Peter Stephen Patrick Handscomb is an Australian cricketer who is the current captain for Victoria and Middlesex.

References