Names of the game

Joel Peterson | Bendigo Weekly | 19-Jan-2018

Waugh George and Bradman Constable with their Northern Rivers U14 teammates. Photo: Andrew Perryman.

HOW many cricketers can say they played with Bradman and Waugh?

Given the generational gap between the greatest player of them all and brothers Mark and Steve, in most instances it would be impossible to believe.

But now a group of local representative juniors can one day sit down and tell the story of how they played alongside those famous names and not tell a word of a lie.

The Northern Rivers under-14 side that has competed at the state titles this week in Melbourne contains plenty of talented cricketers, but when you look at the team list two names jump off the page.

Not necessarily because of their talent compared to their teammates, rather their striking similarity with two iconic cricketing names.

Bendigo United’s Bradman Constable and Rochester’s Waugh George are two players who clearly come from cricket loving households.

“I was pretty sure of where it came from at the outset. Both of my parents played cricket, and it’s definitely from that,” Bradman said.

The names may not have been inspired by both sides of the family though.

“Dad’s a pretty big fan of cricket. I dunno about mum, she doesn’t really like it, but she drives me to trainings and stuff which is really good,” Waugh said.

While you’d think Bradman would be a top order batsman and Waugh stationed in the middle order with the ability to bowl part time, their strengths don’t quite line up with their namesakes.

Bradman is an all-rounder, who bats near the top of the order but also bowls rather handy seamers, or as he terms it, “a few right-arm mediums”.

Waugh took up a completely different tack.

“I bowl leg spin,” he said.

“I didn’t decide to because of any player, I just did it a bit and I enjoy bowling it.”

While there is only one Bradman, Waugh admits he has chosen which of the brothers he’d rather be inspired by.

“Steve. Definitely Steve,” he said.

The clear cricketing influence on their names could for some be a lot to live up to. But for this pair of aspiring stars, they’re just two more members of the team.

“It’s a really good team and it’s a lot of fun to be around a different group and learn and train with different people and coaches,” Waugh said.

“It’s really good. The coaches are great and so are the team,” Bradman said.

“We don’t even have nicknames really. We just get called Bradman and Waugh, and that’ll do.”

And while they have lofty standards to live up to in terms of the name, there’s little doubt that Waugh, Bradman, and their teammates, all have bright futures in the game.


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