Monday, May 23, 2022

An Audacious Talent

One of cricket's greatest all-rounders, Miller with his good looks, flowing mop of black hair was a favourite of fans around the world.

An Audacious Talent

Australian Keith Miller, rated as one of cricket's greatest all-rounders, died in Melbourne today aged 84, a family spokesman said.

Miller, who played in Don Bradman's 'Invincibles' team on the 1948 tour of England, passed away peacefully at a nursing home on the Mornington Peninsula south of Melbourne, the spokesman said.

He was a magnificent attacking batsman, averaging almost 37 in 55 Tests and claimed 170 wickets at 22.97.

Miller made his Test debut in 1946-47 against New Zealand and retired after the 1956 tour of England.

As an aggressive lower-order batsman, Miller was one of the game's biggest hitters and thrilled crowds with his adventurous play.

With his good looks, flowing mop of black hair and audacious talent, Miller was a favourite of cricket fans around the world.

A gifted all-round sportsman, Miller played 50 Victorian Football League (now AFL) games for St. Kilda and represented Victoria in 1946.

Miller was also a World War fighter pilot with his service intervening into his early cricket career.

His wife Marie was with him when he passed away. He would have been 85 next month.

Former India skipper Vijay Hazare described Miller as "a great all rounder and a very good but unpredictable bowler."

 "He was a great all rounder. He was a very good middle order batsman and a very good fast bowler, but was very unpredictable (as a bowler)," said Hazare.

"He used to take a long run up and bowl spinners, even googlies. But he could bowl very fast with a run-up of just two or three steps," India's all-time great batsman of the 1940s and 50s said.

Hazare earned the respect of Sir Donald Bradman's all-conquering team of the late 1940s with his fabulous feat of scoring centuries in each innings of the Adelaide Test in the inaugural series between the two countries Down Under in 1947-48.

India lost that Test by an innings and the five-match series 0-4 against the legendary Australian team whose three-pronged pace attack comprised Ray Lindwall, Miller and Bill Johnston.

Miller made 185 runs with two half tons averaging 37 per innings and claimed nine wickets at 24.78 apiece in the series against India. Though he never toured India for a Test series, he was part of the Australian Services team, under Lindsay Hassett, that toured India soon after the World War II.

"I had high respect and regard for Miller. His passing away is a great loss for the game," said the former India captain who played under late Lala Amarnath against Bradman's powerful outfit and amassed 429 runs in the rubber averaging a shade over 47 per innings.



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