The Don disliked by his peers

SYDNEY – Former Australian international cricketer Gary Cosier has risked the ire of fans across the country after claiming the legendary Sir Donald Bradman was loathed by many players.

Cosier, who played 18 Tests for Australia, was thrown back into the public spotlight this week after being portrayed as a World Series Cricket outcast in Channel Nine’s hit TV series Howzat.

He said dislike for ‘The Don’ was one of the main reasons that Australia’s top cricketers chose to sign up for Kerry Packer’s famous cricket revolution.

“The thing that hasn’t been written before is that during the 1977 Centenary Test at our pre-match gathering, Rod Marsh and a few other players were just so harsh on Bradman,” Cosier said.

“We were there to play against the Poms the next day and Sir Donald got as big a serve as any of the Englishmen did – probably a lot more.

“There was an intense, I don’t know if hatred is the right word, but dislike (for Bradman).

“Plenty of the players were carrying on about Bradman and saying they couldn’t stand him. As long as Bradman was alive, they thought he kind of ran Australian cricket, and they didn’t like that.”

While Cosier was not offered a breakaway contract like most of his teammates at the time, he has dismissed suggestions he is bitter. He says his portrayal in Howzat! is consistent with what occurred.

Sir Donald Bradman, who died in 2001, is arguably cricket’s most revered figure and widely regarded as the greatest batsman of all time.

After 52 Test matches, he finished with a batting average of 99.94, before serving as an administrator, selector and writer for three decades.

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