Dietmar Hamann
© Getty Images
4

The Essentials

'I prefer fielding'

Footballer Dietmar Hamann on the cricket discipline he's partial to, and the first name on his T20 team sheet

Jack Wilson |

How did you fall in love with the game?
I've been a big fan since I've been in England. I watched the Ashes in 2005 and that's what really caught my imagination. I've been to games through the years and met a few players. The whole sport is just great. It's a game of skill as well as strategy - especially Tests. That's why I enjoy watching it so much.

Have you ever swapped the football boots for cricket spikes? How did it go?
Freddie Flintoff took me into the nets at Lancashire eight or nine years ago. He cranked the bowling machine up to 95mph to see what it would be like to face Brett Lee. I had a bat and a bowl and didn't do too well. To be honest, I prefer fielding!

Who is your favourite cricketer to watch?
I used to love watching Freddie. I've always had a soft spot for the allrounders. To be able to do one skill well is a real talent, to do both is a truly great feat. I loved watching Jacques Kallis and enjoy seeing Shane Watson play too.

What is your all-time favourite cricket moment?
There are so many, it's impossible to pick one. I love watching Chris Gayle bat. Any innings he plays in the shorter form is great entertainment.

If you had to select a T20 XI, who would be the first name on the team sheet?
AB de Villiers. He's taking the game to a different level. Chris Gayle is not getting any younger and he can still do, but AB is something else.

If Franz Beckenbauer was a cricketer, how would he play?
I'd say he'd be a bit hot-headed at times - maybe like Ricky Ponting. He'd be technically gifted, silky-smooth, but with a bit of a temper about him. Exactly like Ponting.

Which of your old team-mates would be most likely to sledge in a cricket match?
Carra [Jamie Carragher]. He's never shy of a word or two on the pitch. He's a cricket fan too, so I'll go with him.

What is the one thing footballers could learn from cricketers?
Etiquette. Cricketers play the game in the right spirit. They clap hundreds and appreciate what the opposition do. Footballers shake hands at the end but there's just not as much spirit in the game. Everyone should shake everyone's hands.

Interview by Jack Wilson

 

LOGIN TO POST YOUR COMMENTS

  • POSTED BY SixSmasher on | August 29, 2015, 23:48 GMT

    Good read and good answers. Seems like he really knows the game well. Interesting considering he is German and an ex-footballer. Good read.

  • POSTED BY Herakles on | August 28, 2015, 3:29 GMT

    Very nice read. More such interviews of sportsmen from non-cricket playing countries would be great. Peter Svidler next if possible?

  • POSTED BY Roshan_P on | August 27, 2015, 20:39 GMT

    Absolutely lovely read. Are you watching ICC? If a German who has come to the country to play football can fall in love with our beautiful game then why can't we spread the game far and wide? We need to get more Associate nations and new nations playing Test cricket and give them more funding and facilities.

  • POSTED BY Cricinfouser on | August 27, 2015, 17:30 GMT

    His knowledge of the game seems impeccable for a footballer and especially a german.