Brad Hogg is one of the best spinners Australia has ever produced. He was part of Ricky Ponting’s side which won the 2003 and 2007 World Cup and had played an instrumental role in the success of the Aussies during the 2000s. A lot of people might not know this but he actually had made his debut in 1996.
He was brought into the Australia team in 1996 and played one Test and seven ODIs in the absence of Shane Warne in the sub-continent. However, after this, it took him some time to find his feet at the international level. He went back to playing for Western Australia and didn’t get his next call-up to the national side in 2002-03.
In a recent interaction, Hogg recalled an incident which turned around his cricket career. He talked about the time his Western Australia teammate Justin Langer pinned him up against the locker in the dressing room. He called it the biggest moment of his career. This had happened after Hogg was dropped for the Western Australia side in 1998.
I went home and looked at myself in the mirror: Brad Hogg
“I toured with Australia in ’96. Two years later, I was in the dressing rooms at WA [Western Australia]. I’d just been dropped by the state team, I was carrying on like a pork chop.
He pinned me up against the locker in the changing room and said ‘Mate, you’ve got to pull your head in, otherwise you’re going to lose your cricketing career very quickly. Go home and look at yourself in the mirror.’ That was probably the biggest moment in my career,” Hogg said as quoted by Cricket Next.
Hogg later said that this also helped him mend his relations which the then Western Australia captain Tom Moody. Shane Warne’s ban at the 2003 Cricket World Cup had allowed Hogg to get in the side. He ended up having a World Cup career with 34 wickets from 21 matches.
“During that period I wasn’t really having a connectedness with Tom Moody. I was blaming him for certain things, and when I went home and looked at myself in the mirror I started to get some home truths,” Hogg recalled.
The left-arm chinaman, who once again made a comeback to the Australian side and T20 franchise cricket in 2011, said that moment made him reflect upon a lot of things. He revealed that he understood that he was losing an opportunity. The harsh words by Langer had given him a mirror.
“I went for a run that night and sat on a park bench sort of in tears, just realising what I had done, throwing the opportunity away. It took me 18 months to get back in that state team and [five] years to get back for Australia. I had lost my core values of being a team man and I became selfish. Luckily, I had the opportunity to get back on the right path,” Hogg added.
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