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World Cup flashbacks: Australia's Andrew Zesers played two games in 1987 WC before retiring at 23

World Cup flashbacks: Australias Andrew Zesers played two games in 1987 WC before retiring at 23

Bengaluru, April 16: Fading out of talents prematurely is not something new in cricket. But those talents that fade out after playing in a World Cup, even if in one game, remain stitched to the memory, perhaps forever - such is the legacy of the world's biggest cricket tournament.

There are names in world cricket that had made names only at the WC and were never heard again but people remember them. This is something which is true even with other big sporting events like FIFA World Cup or the Olympics. Delivering on the highest stage has its own advantages.

Andrew Zesers (actual name Andris Karlis Zesers) is one such name that comes to mind. Born in 1967 in Medindie in South Australia, Zesers is the son of a Latvia-born construction worker. The fast bowler went on to play just two ODIs for Australia and both of which came at the 1987 World Cup and by the time he was 23, Zesers's career was over because of a shoulder injury. However, even in that short career of six years, Zeser has had some significant milestones to his credit.

The man started his first-class career in 1984 for South Australia when he was just 17. He played his first game against Tasmania and then picked his maiden five-wicket haul against Victoria in his debut season itself. He also scored 85 batting at No.9 to give his side an emphatic victory.

In March 1987, Zesers's consistency paid off as he went on to become the youngest Australian bowler to pick 100 first-class wickets. He was barely 20 then.

Zesers got one wicket in two games at the WC; was never picked again

The high performance saw Zesers getting picked for the Australian side that came to the sub-continent to play the fourth edition of the World Cup the same year. He made his debut in the return clash against India in New Delhi but went wicketless for 37 runs in nine overs as Australia lost the match by 56 runs.

The youngster got another chance as he was picked for the crucial clash against New Zealand in Chandigarh and in that game, though he picked the valuable wicket of John Wright to help Australia win by 17 runs, he gave away 37 runs in just six overs.

That was all for Zesers in the World Cup as well as in international cricket. He was not picked again for Australia who went on to win the trophy that year and in another three years, the promising bowler bid adieu to the game after suffering from persistent shoulder injuries. He got just 41 wickets in first-class cricket between 1987 and 1990 and called it a day at the age of 23. Zesers also played in 15 Lis 'A' games in which he picked 10 wickets.

He had a very short career in cricket but in that, he had two major success stories that even many players with truck-load of experience don't.

 
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Story first published: Tuesday, April 16, 2019, 16:12 [IST]
Other articles published on Apr 16, 2019
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