Top 10 Amazing Facts about Sir Donald Bradman
He has been christened the greatest cricketer of the 20th century and the greatest batsman of all time. Sir Donald Bradman was born in 1908 in New South Wales, Australia. His early start towards a cricket career was from his playtime alone, where he continually hit a ball with a cricket stump against the curved brick base of a water tank. His mind was able to envisage matches and he played them out with complete boundaries, the batsman awaiting the ball thrown at him by the tank stand.
The amazing cricketer is renowned in Australia and beyond- and cricket legends pay homage to him. Here are the top 10 amazing facts about Sir Donald Bradman.
1. Sir Donald Bradman Was Introduced To Cricket At An Early Age
Donald Bradman got introduced to cricket as a child- both his parents loved cricket and exposed him to the sport as often as possible. His father would take him to matches all the time- he took him to watch his idol Charlie Macartney play in Sydney, a three-hour train ride away from their home. It helped Bradman’s career that his parents were equally invested in the sport.
2. Sir Donald Bradman Chaperoned A Formidable Team
Donald Bradman was appointed captain of the Australian team in 1936. Under his leadership, the team flourished. In all the 32 matches the team played while Bradman was captain, the team was undefeated. His team bonded well as a majority of them fought in the war together. They grew in experience and talent, maintaining a great record.
3. Bradman Contributed To Cricket Literature
From his years of experience, Sir Donald Bradman was able to guide up-and-coming players and teams. In 1958, Bradman wrote a coaching manual titled ‘The Art of Cricket’. The manual got rave reviews; it was regarded as the most brilliant coaching book there ever was.
‘Farewell to Cricket’ is a 1950 book the player wrote- a collection of his personal view of his career; a memoir. As one would expect, the book is very detailed in time, places, and scores, as it came from the ‘horses’ mouth’.
4. From Donald To ‘Sir Donald Bradman’
Don Bradman is the only Australian cricketer to be knighted. This took place in 1949 the same year he retired from the game. His cricket achievements were so high that he got recognized and awarded specifically for his services to cricket.
Bradman was regarded as a national hero, one of Australia’s greats- when he passed on, the then Prime Minister attested to the fact that he had an immeasurable impact on Australia and one of the most remarkable people at that.
5. Sir Donald Bradman’s Record Is Unbroken
Sir Donald Bradman was an outlier- at retirement, his batting average of 99.94 was still much higher than that of the next best player that ever came close. Bradman’s batting average is just one of the records that he still holds to date. He is also the only test batsman to score more than 5,000 runs against an opponent and is the player to have scored the most runs in a single day’s play.
His humble beginnings hitting a ball against the tank did much for him- having a small bat hitting the ball against a tank that sent the ball his way faster than normal and at varied angles made him naturally develop an extra skill set to be able to play. This was helpful to him on every real cricket field he played on.
6. Bradman Oval Is Named After Sir Donald Bradman
As established, Sir Donald Bradman was nothing short of a national treasure for Australia. With this huge honor, his townspeople must have held him in higher regard and beamed with pride. Bradman grew up in New South Wales, Bowral. He only moved to Sydney when he came of age at 18 to play for his state and then for his country.
The Bradman Oval is a cricket ground considered heritage land on Glebe Street, Bowral. It currently is one of Australia’s most sought-after playing grounds. It once belonged to the church, but the townspeople of Bowral organized and bought it, renaming it Bradman Oval from Glebe Park in honor of their jewel.
Bradman was endearingly called ‘Bowral boy’ after the town he grew up in-one can only imagine the wonderful melee that must have been, any time Donald Bradman visited!
7. Sir Donald Bradman Built A Museum
Maybe not in the literal sense, but Donald Bradman opened the doors to the Bradman Museum at the Bradman Oval in 1989. The museum explains cricket- it tells the cricket story by way of cricket collections, displays, and publications, and is dedicated to the preservation of the history of the sport.
At the museum, one will find many cricket artifacts, many of which are Sir Donald Bradman’s items. His first cricket bat which was too big for him at the time definitely features in the museum. Visitors to the museum can walk through Bradman’s career and retired life.
8. The Don Lives On In Adelaide
Just outside the Adelaide cricket ground stands a 2.5-meter statue, a facsimile of Sir Donald Bradman at play. The statue was unveiled in 2002, a year after the legend passed on. ‘The Don’ as Donald was referred to, is quite the attraction with both locals and tourists visiting him periodically.
The somewhat pompous statue stands right in tune with Sir Donald Bradman’s domination in the game of cricket. The Don is in good company at Adelaide, as the statue was erected at the head of a memorial pool for other Australian cricketers.
9. Donald Bradman’s Performance Was Unmatched
Sir Donald Bradman was recognized for his performance- ‘The Best Single Performance by a Male Athlete’ running from 1788 to 1988. For this, he was awarded a trophy during Australia’s bicentennial 1988 celebrations. Bradman’s 309 runs in one single day’s play on that cricket field in 1930 were not in vain. All in a day’s work nonetheless!
10. Sir Donald Bradman Gets A Nod For Every Test Player
At the Bradman Museum sits a baggy green cap that Sir Don Bradman wore as captain of the Australian team. Bradman did well as captain. This baggy green cap became symbolic as Test players for the Australian team receive a unique number and a similar baggy green cap, clearly a nod to Donald Bradman.
Sir Donald Bradman is a legend. He is considered a hero to the young and old alike. He became an inspiration and mentor to children in Australia, inspiring them to become great sportspeople and great cricket players. This was a well-thought-out and heartfelt area for Bradman to concentrate on; he was inspired and looked up to another cricket great as a child when his father took him three hours away to watch that match in Sydney.