If Ganguly can, so can I; Crowe announces first-class return

Wellington: Inspired by former India captain Sourav Ganguly and Australian spin legend Shane Warne, the 48-year-old Martin Crowe on Thursday announced his return to first-class cricket in a bid to score the 320 runs he needs to touch a tally of 20,000.

"Hey! If Ganguly can do it, anyone can do it! Shane Warne has been amazing and as a spin bowler he can probably bowl like that for a long time to come. Gilchrist has kept himself fit. It`s human nature to feel that you are top of things," Crowe, a former New Zealand captain, said.

"Every now and then you find yourself drifting along. I needed to do something to stay at the top of things," Crowe said.

"It`s a little bit of fun but it`s based on the need to get off my butt. When you get to my age, you need to do something. Physically, I am a person who needs more than going to gym. I need to fire myself up. I don`t like swimming, cycling, or lifting weights. I can`t climb, I can`t run; why not bat? It`s a serious goal to get fit but it`s a fun and light-hearted attempt to see if a 48-year old can play and at what level. Unless you try you will never know," he added.

Crowe said he has no fear of being ridiculed for attempting a comeback at 48.

"If I had done that at the age of 37-38, then may be your concerns would be valid. If I had done it then, it would have been sad. At that stage you are trying to make a comeback to international cricket. Now, I don`t have any aspiration to play international cricket. I gave up then because of my knee. I am interested to see if a 48-year old can bat. It`s probably unlikely. It`s probably only heard of at average club level. But that`s what we are going to check out," he explained.

Crowe retired from international cricket due to a knee injury.

"By the time I was 40, I couldn`t even walk. I had a major operation called Osteotomy; it gives you 15 years of interim relief until you are old enough to have an artificial knee. I have felt good with this operation in the last 4-5 years," he said.

Crowe played 77 Tests for his 5444 runs. In the 143 ODIs he participated in, the right-hander scored 4704 runs.


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