Greig receives Lord's honour

2011-12-08 20:13

London - Former England captain Tony Greig will deliver the 2012 Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) Spirit of Cricket Lecture at Lord's, it was announced here on Thursday.

South Africa-born Greig led England for two years in the mid-1970s but then stunned the cricket establishment, including many MCC members, by 'defecting' to businessman Kerry Packer's World Series Cricket in Australia, having recruited many of the world's best players for the unofficial matches.

Greig, who played for county side Sussex, was promptly stripped of the England captaincy and his involvement with Packer has tended to obscure his fine record as an all-rounder.

Greig played 58 Tests between 1972 and 1977, averaging over 40 with the bat, and taking 141 wickets at an average of 32.20.

Since retiring from playing, Greig - who was made an honorary life member of the MCC in 1998 - has lived in Australia and forged a career as a television commentator, mainly for the Packer family's Channel Nine station.

"Fiercely competitive on the field and hugely insightful off the field, Tony Greig has had a wonderful career in the game," said MCC president Phillip Hodson in a statement.

"Never one to shun the limelight or shy away from voicing his opinion, I am sure that his MCC Spirit of Cricket Cowdrey Lecture will be in keeping with the way he played the game."

Since its inauguration in 2001, several leading cricket figures including former Australia captain turned broadcaster Richie Benaud and Greig's former England team-mate Geoff Boycott have given the lecture, which takes place annually at Lord's, the MCC's home ground in north-west London.

This year's address was given by a current international cricketer in Sri Lankan star Kumar Sangakkara.

It is named after Colin Cowdrey, the former England captain, who played Tests alongside Greig towards the end of his 20 years as an international batsman.

Greig is due to give the 12th Cowdrey Lecture at Lord's on June 26.