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Sunday, March 13, 2005

Jonty Rhodes

Rhodes should be a favorite of any cricket lover. During his times he had elevated fielding to un-believable heights. That famous 1992 World Cup poster of Rhodes flying almost parallel to the groud is still in the minds of the most. He has some magical glimpse in his eyes and in his smiles and I found enough reasons for it today.

Here's an excerpt of the wonderful piece I read in The Hindu.

"Rhodes has enjoyed immensely his visits to the City of Joy, and Mother Teresa has remained a source of much inspiration.'The example she has set, it is not about religion. It is about caring for people. The concern that she showed ... you can talk the talk, but do you really walk the walk? She sacrificed so much of her life whenever she found there was a calling. She probably didn't feel there was a sacrifice involved. She was a real motivator. She gives you hope. It's certainly difficult out there. But if you can put the other people first, you certainly can contribute.'

The tsunami tragedy, all the suffering and the pain, left him disturbed. Rhodes did take part in the three one-dayers in New Zealand to raise funds for the Sri Lankan relief fund. Again he is able to glean the bigger picture. 'It's not just about rebuilding houses and roads. It is about rebuilding people's lives. That is going to take much longer.'

He goes on: 'The frightening thing was that there weren't too many visuals that came through on the first day. When the visuals started coming in, it was hard to bear. You had heard the news, you heard the casualty figures, and now you saw the trauma that the people went through. Regardless of your culture or the country you came from, it moved you. There has been so much destruction, there have been so many deaths that it will take everyone's combined effort for a long time to heal the wounds.'

On Hansie Cronje

Rhodes has been through several testing periods in his life and one of them was when his good friend and captain for long, Hansie Cronje, confessed, after the match-fixing scandal broke out in 2000, to accepting money from the bookies to alter the course of some contests. 'What he did was wrong. But I never made him feel that he was not my friend. That's what friends are for. Our wives are best friends. What Bertha (Cronje's wife) went through after Hansie's death (Cronje died in a plane crash in 2002) ... it was sad. The King Commission proceedings were televised live in South Africa and my wife and I, we couldn't watch it. To see the sadness in him, and how badly he felt for what he had done, we really couldn't watch it.'"

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