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sir ron brierley

Cricket Test

By Theatre

The Second TestWhen the New Zealand crick­et team (note not BLACKCAPS™) first toured South Africa in 1953 they had nev­er won a Test Match and were giv­en no show against a ruth­less South Africa, on pitches tailored to sup­port their fast, mean quick bowlers.

The crick­et was tough, and vic­tory was ulti­mately bey­ond New Zealand’s grasp, but it was­n’t the crick­et that ensured that the series became a NZ sport­ing legend. The 1953 Second (Christmas Day) Test is fam­ous for the pro­foundly mov­ing story of one play­er, Kiwi fast bowl­er Bob Blair, and his story has been brought to the stage by tal­en­ted act­or Jonny Brugh (Sugar & Spice) and it’s play­ing now at BATS.

During the rest day of the Test, Blair got the news that his fiancée Nerissa Love had been killed along with 150 oth­ers in the Tangiwai Rail Disaster. When play resumed on Boxing Day nobody expec­ted Blair to play any fur­ther part in the game. Without giv­ing too much away, the rest (as they say) is history.

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