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Thursday, 12 May 1994
Page: 777

Senator BROWNHILL (Deputy Leader of the National Party of Australia) (4.23 p.m.) —On behalf of the National Party, I join with all other senators who this afternoon have paid tribute to AB. I cannot add to any of the statistics that have been given about our world record holder, except to say, `Well done, AB. You have given us a great deal of pleasure in watching you. We salute you for what you have done for Australian cricket.'

  The year that Allan Border got into test cricket he played in a cricket team with me. At that stage I use to have a cricket team every year that contained players from the Shield arena who we thought would get into the test team the next year. It just so happened that AB got in that year, and we all know what he has done since. I will tell honourable senators a little about that particular cricket match. It was against a first XI from my son's school. They were all 17- and 18-year-old boys who felt they knew a fair bit about cricket. David Hourn was the other player whom we selected that year. David Hourn did not quite make it, but he is still one of the characters of cricket and he also has made a great contribution to the game.

  Allan Border showed that he was a real professional at that particular stage because he showed how an innings could be built. He got 100-odd runs and did not hit any fours or sixes until he got into the sixties. It was quite interesting because one of my friends who was batting with AB—just an ordinary cricketer like myself—ran himself out after a while because he could not handle all the sharp singles that Allan Border was running. Allan Border taught those kids what had to be done to become a world-class cricketer, and this showed up in all the things that he did after that. Being a left-hander also endears him to my heart because it is the best side of the bat to stand, as he proved over and over again.

Senator Chapman —Hear, hear!

Senator BROWNHILL —Thank you for the `hear, hears'. Allan Border showed what a great left-hander he was. It is harder for a left-hander to score runs than it is for a right-hander.

Senator Robert Ray —How can you be given out LBW to a right-hand bowler!

Senator BROWNHILL —Senator Ray disagrees, but it has always been harder for me, anyway. We salute Allan Border for what he has done and the pleasure he has given us. I salute him for the fact that he captained Australia for as long as he did in all those tough times. I also salute him for the way he handled a team that was in the depths when he took over, but he took it to the top and won many games in his career. I salute him for the fact that he grew up in New South Wales, my home state. He then went to Queensland, Senator Boswell's home state, and Senator Boswell has asked that his name be included in this appreciation of Allan Border.

  I wish him, his wife and his family all the very best in his retirement. He has given a great deal of time away. Maybe in some ways it is almost as bad for cricketers being away from their families as it is for members of parliament. Once again, I salute him on behalf of the National Party. I thank him for what he has done for us and for Australian cricket. I wish him well and hope that he and his family enjoy a well-earned rest at home.