In the Bible, Adam commits the ‘original sin’. He eats the forbidden fruit, leading to the fall of man.
In the world of cricket, Adam walks when he doesn’t need to. He walks against the umpire’s decision because he knows has nicked.
I didn’t intent to make that Biblical reference but I was astounded not to have found it any of the hundred articles I’ve read about Adam Gilchrist. So I just had to do it.
In the Australian team known as much for being notorious as it was for being the best, Adam Gilchrist stood as the lone symbol of ethic and humility.
And that is why we love him so much in India. While supremely attached to the result of any match, we put all our emotions and heart into the game and anyone who respects that, gets all the adulation in return.
Here are some instances of Adam Gilchrist being his absolute humble, intelligent and hilarious self that still make us fall in love with him.
1. The last ODI match he played was against India, the match Australia lost. In his speech, he didn’t forget to congratulate the winning side, while adding how thankful he was of the opportunity of representing his country.
2. No one can forget Australia’s tour to India of 2001. Not even Gilchrist, who, again, despite his side’s loss, did not fail to mention that it was an iconic series and something that changed the course of cricket.
3. He has always been this way, though, even when he was 17 and just starting out. This interview from 1989 is proof of that.
4. It would be remiss here, to not mention his famous ‘walk off’ again. Playing against Sri Lanka in the semi-final of the World Cup, 2003, Gilly did not pay heed to the fact that the umpire had declared him not out. He knew he was dismissed and that was enough.
And with that one gesture, he changed the meaning of Australianism for Australia.
5. Now, Indians love Gilchrist but it is not one sided. He loves the country just as much. Speaking about India, he once said:
The country itself had got a hold of me. It was weird: I felt riven by anxiety, yet every day I saw what people lived with in India and it put my worries into perspective. I find that the more you think about your time in India, the more you realise it’s the most valuable place you’ve ever been, although you don’t know that at the time you’re learning.
6. MS Dhoni has paid his tribute to Adam Gilchrist multiple times as he was the first wicketkeeper-batsman icon that the world saw. But trust the Australian to be humble when praised.
7. Speaking of humility, he still doesn’t think he is famous enough and feels the need to thank people for recognising him (oh my heart!).
Thank you for giving me such a warm welcome, it feels great to know that people know you, because I know there are people in my country who still don’t recognize me. Sometime back, I found a gentleman staring at me. I tried to avoid his gaze until he came up to me and tapped on my shoulder. I turned around and smiled, but before I could say anything, he asked, ‘Are you Glenn McGrath? When I told him that I wasn’t, he just left. I was laughing at myself for being an idiot for thinking that everybody knew me.
8. Outside the world of cricket, he is still adorable as hell and a person everyone aspires to be. Gilchrist married his girlfriend from school and now has 4 kids, but his first date may or may not have gone too well.