FORMER Australian one-day great Michael Bevan, 39, has pulled out of the Pacific MMI and Motor Vehicle Insurance Ltd “Don’t drink and drive” Twenty20 Legend’s bash this weekend due to illness.
Cricket PNG general manager Bill Leane made the announcement yesterday saying it was unfortunate that the event would lose a marquee name only days before the commencement, however he was pleased to announce that the replacement would be another big name in Australian cricket Damien Martyn.
“Unfortunately, due to illness Michael Bevan will be unable to visit PNG for the Pacific MMI, Motor Vehicles Insurance Limited “Don’t drink and drive” T20 Legends Bash.
“This is extremely disappointing news to all cricket fans.
“The exciting news, however, is that Australian Test star Damien Martyn will be taking his place and Marto will be heading up the Brian Bell Bulldogs team in the T20 Legends bash this weekend,” Leane said.
A stylish batsman for Australia in both the tests and one-dayers between 1992 and 2007 Martyn, 39, a middle order batsman is mostly known for his textbook form at the crease and his refined stroke play.
He was named the player of the series in 2004 for the Border Gavaskar Trophy between India and Australia and was awarded the Allan Border medal in 2005 capping off a brilliant run with the bat and in the field.
Averaging around 41 in ODIs (one day internationals) and 46 in tests during a 15-year career Martyn’s value to the Australian team was rarely questioned even in the company of such all-time greats in Steve and Mark Waugh, Adam Gilchrist and Michael Bevan.
Leane said with Martyn’s inclusion for the weekend’s matches the tournament would lose nothing in terms of excitement and flair with the normally conservative Western Australian batsman capable of clearing the boundary and timing the ball sweetly for a crowd pleasing show.
Martyn arrives today along with Andrew Symonds, Michael Kasprowicz, Greg Blewett, Greg Matthews and Andy Bichel while Jimmy Maher will arrive tomorrow.