Born on 27 August, 1908 at Cootamundra in New South Wales and died on 25 February 2001 at Adelaide. Cricket’s cognoscenti accept Sir Donald Bradman as the greatest batsman ever. Wisden Cricketer of the Year in 1931, knighted in 1949 and appointed Commander of the Order of Australia in 1979, he was selected one of the five Wisden Cricketers of the Century in 2000. He made his debut against England in the first test of the 1928-29 series at Brisbane, and when he walked back to the pavilion at the Oval during the fifth test - his last - of the 1948 series in England, bowled by Eric Hollies for a duck, he needed just four runs to possess a test career average of 100.
In only 52 test matches, Sir Donald scored 6,996 runs - with 29 hundreds, 13 fifties and a highest score of 334 - for a batting average of 99.94. He also claimed two wickets with his leg-breaks. He led Australia between 1936 and 1948 and did not lose a single series. Douglas Jardine invented the 'Bodyline' theory to prevent Sir Donald's batting from dominating the 1932 Ashes series. The theory was successful, in the sense that, Sir Donald averaged 'only' 56.57 in the four tests!
The Lord's Taverners Book of Fifty Greatest Cricketers says, "Bradman's judgement, timing, footwork and concentration were in a class of their own, the runs flowing from his bat in all directions with a speed and certainty that drove bowlers almost to distraction. He wasn't infallible, but he was the next best thing." Jim Laker, the off break bowler who captured 19 wickets in a test match once says, Bradman was 'the only batsman who gave me an inferiority complex’.