Our Legend of the Week goes to Peter Pollock, who celebrates his 75th birthday.
There are three reasons to be thankful for Peter Pollock’s contribution to South African cricket. Firstly, he spent the best part of a decade as South Africa’s premier paceman, taking 116 Test wickets from 28 matches at an average of 24.18 in the 1960s. Then he was South Africa’s convener of selectors in the 1990s, taking accountability for an inexperienced group of players through the wilderness of international cricket after readmission. Lastly, he gave South Africa one of the best bowling all-rounders to have played the game, Shaun, who captained the Proteas throughout the early-2000s.
Cricket runs through the Pollock family’s veins, as brother Graeme remains one of the best batsman to have graced the game. Combining for a number of years to lead the line with the ball and occupy the crease in the middle order respectively, arguably Peter and Graeme’s finest moment together took place in the second Test against England at Trent Bridge in 1965. The South Africans won the Test by 94 runs, and that was enough to win the three-match series 1-0, for their first series victory there in 30 years.
It couldn’t have been done without the Pollock brothers. Graeme hit 125 in the first innings to help SA to 269, before Peter spearheaded England’s 240 all out with 5-53. Graeme then followed up with 59 in the second innings, while Peter sealed his 10-wicket haul with 5-34 to leave England 94 runs short of the mark.
Photo: Duif du Toit/Gallo Images