At the risk of boring you all to death with yet another post about the 2015 Cricket World Cup, as we count down the hours until the game starts in Melbourne at 4.30pm this afternoon there are two things I just want to share with you.
The first is an open letter written for ESPN CricInfo from Martin Crowe*, arguably New Zealand’s finest cricketer, who was part of the New Zealand cricket team when the World Cricket Cup was last co-hosted by Australia and New Zealand, back in 1992. Crowe was diagnosed with follicular lymphoma about two years ago, and has since been diagnosed with a rare blood disease called double-hit lymphoma. Only 5 per cent of patients live up to 12 months, and Crowe is reported as saying that he did not expect to live until the end of 2014, but was determined to survive to see the Black Caps in the World Cup tournament. Earlier during the tournament Crowe was inducted into the ICC (International Cricket Council) Hall of Fame, and yesterday he paid this moving tribute to the Black Caps and what it means to him that they have reached the final of the 2015 Cricket World Cup:
The second is an advertisement from one of the major supporters of cricket in New Zealand, the ANZ Bank.
Slowly this ad has wormed its way into my heart and my soul, to the point where I almost cannot watch it without shedding tears of pride and joy, so much does the Black Caps’ achievement means to me. As Brendon McCullum says at the end of the ad, “Dream big, New Zealand” – and we are, Brendon, we are!! Whatever the result of the game today, it has been a wonderful tournament for the Black Caps. A win this afternoon would be the icing on the cake – and I truly believe we can achieve it.
*And, yes, Martin is the cousin of actor Russell Crowe.