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The Hansie Cronje Story: An Authorised Biography

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Hansie Cronje captained the South African cricket team for six years, playing in 68 test matches - statistically, he remains the country's greatest captain ever. This book provides a full and frank account of the cricketing hero who resigned over match-fixing allegations, subsequently dying in a tragic air crash. Hansie Cronje captained the South African cricket team for six years, playing in 68 test matches - statistically, he remains the country's greatest captain ever. This book provides a full and frank account of the cricketing hero who resigned over match-fixing allegations, subsequently dying in a tragic air crash.


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Hansie Cronje captained the South African cricket team for six years, playing in 68 test matches - statistically, he remains the country's greatest captain ever. This book provides a full and frank account of the cricketing hero who resigned over match-fixing allegations, subsequently dying in a tragic air crash. Hansie Cronje captained the South African cricket team for six years, playing in 68 test matches - statistically, he remains the country's greatest captain ever. This book provides a full and frank account of the cricketing hero who resigned over match-fixing allegations, subsequently dying in a tragic air crash.

30 review for The Hansie Cronje Story: An Authorised Biography

  1. 5 out of 5

    Pritam Chattopadhyay

    This book speaks of the rise and fall of a star. A life akin to a Greek tragedy really! Cronje stood for all that was superior and optimistic, not only about South African cricket, but also about the hastily-shifting rainbow society of his country. Profoundly swollen with pride and austerely competitive in nature, Hansie was an innate skipper, who could at once command the respect of his compatriots. He hated to lose and inspired his team to keep the fight alive till the last ball was bowled. Ho This book speaks of the rise and fall of a star. A life akin to a Greek tragedy really! Cronje stood for all that was superior and optimistic, not only about South African cricket, but also about the hastily-shifting rainbow society of his country. Profoundly swollen with pride and austerely competitive in nature, Hansie was an innate skipper, who could at once command the respect of his compatriots. He hated to lose and inspired his team to keep the fight alive till the last ball was bowled. However, fate had other plans in store. All that good in the man, went up in a puff of dust when South Africa's longest-serving captain admitted to the president and the managing director of the United Cricket Board (UCB) that he lied to them after match-fixing charges had been levelled against him. In an instant, Cronje changed from being a sporting icon to just another guy looking to make a quick buck. To many lovers of sport, Tuesday April 11 2000 would for years represent a day of infamy for the once-honourable game of cricket. Cronje had been charged by the Indian police in New Delhi with "cheating, fraud and criminal conspiracy" alongwith his three co-accused were Herschelle Gibbs, Nicky Boje and Pieter Strydom. This book begins right from the start of the journey – ball by ball almost. A physically gifted sportsman with astounding hand-eye harmonization, a boyishly attractive cricketer, Cronje was born in Bloemfontein, South Africa to Ewie and San-Marie Cronje on the 25th of September, 1969. He showed early signs of sporting excellence, perhaps embedded in his genes. The credit would go to his father Ewie, a first-class cricketer and commentator himself. Hansie attended the Grey College, where his potential was spotted in a society where there was an immense necessity for leadership. Hansie fittingly emerged a hero, captaining the Proteas cricket team soon after South Africa’s re-entry into the world sporting scene after being conscripted for over twenty years due to apartheid. He shouldered the responsibility in an awesome manner, taking the team from seventh place in world rankings right to the top with his stimulating guidance. He turned out be an excellent captain. South Africa won 27 tests and lost 11 under his watch. His captaincy record in ODIs was even better. He won 99 out of 138 matches and cemented his name as one of South Africa’s most successful captains till date. But then the match-fixing furore broke; he was accused of taking bribes to throw matches. He did indeed confess to the former but always maintained that he had never thrown a match. Part of what made him such an excellent role model was that he was a devout and outspoken Christian. But this is also what made his fall so dramatic and almost unbelievable… the man of God who sinned so publicly. Cronje would accept in subsequent interviews that it was the greed of painless money and his own conceit to think that he would get away with it. Wanting to move on with life outside cricket, he enrolled in a master’s degree course and in February 2002 joined the Johannesburg based firm, Bell Equipment. On 1st June 2002, Cronje had to travel from Johannesburg to George when the flight that he was about to board was grounded and Cronje hitched a ride on a Hawker Siddeley HS 748 Turboprop aircraft. The plane was meant for shiping cargo. The plane failed to reach its destination and crashed into the Outeniqua Mountains. All aboard were killed immediately. His death may be given as a reason to dismiss the charges laid on him presently, but at that time, it only brought forth divided opinions about Cronje and his cricketing contributions. Acknowledgements about his achievements were given with grimness even as hearts and minds wavered about taking a stance on his countenance. The poster-boy of all that was good in cricket had turned overnight into all that was evil and impure and even death couldn’t restore his goodness. Indecisiveness still lingers about Cronje’s legacy as a professional. But this indecisiveness is prevalent only amongst those who were old enough to understand the ramifications of Cronje’s involvement in the match-fixing scandals. For the younger generation of the sport’s followers, Hansie Cronje remains merely a name with a certain unfavourable past associated to it. The new-gen realm of cricket’s followers are more concerned about the present-day mires surrounding international cricket rather than worrying about a past that has no bearing whatsoever contemporarily. To rehash the past before such a generation is then truly unnecessary. The South African doesn’t belong in the present; his death brought a premature end to his bearing on the future. If he had been alive, it would have been an altogether different issue. But then again, dwelling on what if’s isn’t exactly the way to go on about it. In a world where courtesy demands bygones to be let bygones, Hansie Cronje is one man who deserves this courtesy. His death may not have obliterated his misconduct, but it indeed provided an eerily fitting closure to a sportsman fallen from grace. This author of this book does a wonderful job in providing an inclusive and unbiased account of the ascend and descend of a hero.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Peter

    It was OK, very condensed.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Adam

    An enjoyable read. Some sections were overly descriptive, which seemed to me, to take away from the pace of the narrative. But still, it is an insightful account of a remarkable story. Though more for the cricket aficionado, the story offers valuable insights into South African culture, and the behind-the-scenes machinations of world cricket.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Tombo

  5. 5 out of 5

    Suman Makhal

  6. 4 out of 5

    Gaetano

  7. 5 out of 5

    Charles Campbell-thompson

  8. 4 out of 5

    Richard Hutton

  9. 4 out of 5

    Love to Read

  10. 5 out of 5

    Shilpa

  11. 5 out of 5

    Leonie

  12. 4 out of 5

    Warren Meldau

  13. 4 out of 5

    Hannes

  14. 5 out of 5

    Rohan Kallicharan

  15. 4 out of 5

    Desiree-ann McKee

  16. 5 out of 5

    Rudi Visser

  17. 4 out of 5

    Denise

  18. 4 out of 5

    MR COOL

  19. 4 out of 5

    Jonathan Moxon

  20. 5 out of 5

    Susandw

  21. 4 out of 5

    Mike Sutherland

  22. 5 out of 5

    Stefan

  23. 4 out of 5

    Marli

  24. 4 out of 5

    Danita

  25. 5 out of 5

    Tom Leslie

  26. 4 out of 5

    Magdel

  27. 5 out of 5

    Gavin Brown

  28. 5 out of 5

    Leon

  29. 4 out of 5

    Wendy

  30. 4 out of 5

    Lucie Claro

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