Former Australian player Adam Gilchrist termed wicketkeeper-batter Alex Carey’s cricketing journey a “courageous” one as he handed out the Baggy Green to the 30-year-old, who made his Test debut at The Gabba in the opening Ashes game here on Wednesday.
Carey, who has come in as a replacement for wicketkeeper-batter Tim Paine after the latter voluntarily stepped down as skipper in the wake of the sexting scandal, became the 461st men’s cricketer to represent Australia at the Test level and the 34th ‘keeper to don the Baggy Green.
On Wednesday, Carey took three catches – Dawid Malan, (6 runs); Jos Buttler (39) and Ollie Robinson (0) – as England slumped to 136 for 8 in 46.2 overs in the face of some hostile bowling from Australian bowlers, especially skipper Pat Cummins (3 wickets) and Mitchell Starc (2 wickets).
Delivering a stirring speech while presenting Carey with his Baggy Green cap in Brisbane before the start of the Test, Gilchrist said, “Mate, you deserve this. Rest assure that you deserve this, there is absolutely no way this is given out lightly.
“It’s been a courageous journey, you walked away from one journey (playing the Australian Football League) and courageously resumed another dream and here you are fulfilling that dream today. Absolutely brilliant,” added Gilchrist.
In an extremely tough competition for the wicketkeeper-batter’s slot in the Australian Test team, South Australia’s Carey emerged victorious to replace Paine after the selectors reposed faith in him for the first two Ashes Tests.
The 30-year-old Carey was preferred over the younger Josh Inglis, thus becoming the 461st player to represent Australia in men’s Test cricket.