* Brian Booth played a total of 29 Tests and also represented the country in hockey at the 1956 Melbourne Olympics
* ‘I was fortunate to be able to play two sports’
Brian Booth talks about playing cricket and hockey at the top level, facing Charlie Griffith, and the time Richie Benaud bowled Peter May around his legs
*Five highs … and a low
The 1961series left enduring memories for Brian Booth
Who was Brian Booth?
Australian cricket legend dead at 89.
Brian Booth -– a man whose aura was eternal, skill unparalleled and ability to put rivals off balance -– has died aged 89.
One of Australia’s most revered ex-Test cricket captains, Booth, who played 29 Tests from 1961-66 and also represented Australia in hockey at the 1956 Melbourne Olympics, is remembered as one of the sport’s true gentlemen.
As the news of his passing broke, cricket fans took to social media to pay tribute to him, with a series of tweets recalling his contribution to the sport pouring in.
A Bathurst product, the ex-middle order batter made his way down to Sydney and soon established himself at St George, a club he continued to have a close association and later earned a Life Membership, and from which he went on to represent New South Wales and Australia.
Despite being termed a relatively late arrival on the Test scene, Booth managed to earn a place on the 1961 Ashes tour as a 27-year-old, having impressed at the back-end of the previous home summer with two hundreds for an Australian XI against Tasmania and Western Australia.
He played in the final two Tests of that Ashes series, won by the visitors 2-1, though with Australia not hosting Test cricket in the 1961-62 season, he had to wait more than 16 months for a home debut.
His performance – 112 and 19no against England at the Gabba – proved very much worth the wait, and he followed it up with a second hundred in the next Test in Melbourne.
Booth is survived by his wife Judy and four daughters.
Australian fans saw the best of Booth that summer and the next, when he scored another two hundreds, this time against South Africa (169 in Brisbane, 102no in Sydney), his batting average at that point hitting 62.41 after 11 Tests.
Though the legend is gone, his captivating aura continues to live on.