Glenn McGrath feels cricket cannot be played without being passionate and aggressive. But the assertion comes with a rider that the line should never be crossed.
“When you are on the field, you have to play with aggression. Give everything you have but at the same time one should respect the game by not overstepping the line,” he said.
The Australian played by that rule - he wore down batsmen with his verbal volleys and stares as with his impeccable line and length.
“I probably walked close to that line, but never crossed it. Now that I am done with my international career, I can say that I played hard, but never breached the honour of the game,” he said with an obvious reference to the Harbhajan-Sreesanth fracas.
The crowd, media attention, and the entertainment on offer in the IPL have stunned the Aussie.
“When I signed for the IPL, I was not sure how things would turn out as I hadn’t played cricket for the last 12 months. But the moment I bowled my first ball, it felt so good and gave me the same pleasure I used to get while playing for Australia,” he said.
Talking about the Australian players’ domination in the tournament, he said, “Players like Brett Lee, Andrew Symonds and Matthew Hayden bring competitiveness, which is good for cricket.”
Revealing the secret of their success, the lanky fast bowler said it was their ability to adjust quickly to the conditions. “In the last decade we have played a lot of cricket in India and we know the conditions very well.”
Impressed by the performances of the young Indian players, McGrath remarked, “Some of them are really good and I am sure they will play for India in the years to come. The teams that have struck a balance between Indian talent and international stars will do well.”
Sounding a warning to the International Cricket Council, McGrath advocated a window for the IPL in the ICC calendar.
“Some players can earn more while playing for the IPL as compared to turning out for their countries for a year. It is an issue that needs to be sorted out else it will be detrimental to international cricket,” he said.