Former Australia cricketer Dean Jones left for his heavenly abode on September 24 in a Mumbai hotel but he still continues to rule the hearts of his fans and ex-teammates, who also considered him as their cricketing hero. Dean Jones was just 59 when he passed away due to a heart attack. He was in India to fulfill his commitments for host broadcasters of IPL 2020.
Ahead of the Boxing Day Test between India and Australia, former Australia top-order batsman Brad Hodge has paid a very emotional tribute to Dean Jones. He has recalled moments when he played with him and how is arrival in the dressing room will be like Christmas for everyone.
Hodge also added that he was a massive Kim Hughes fan before idolising Allan Border and then Dean Jones.
“You have your idols as a youngster, that’s who you aspire to be. We just loved Deano, as a Victorian, growing up, watching him play one-day internationals for Australia, then Test matches, just revolutionising one-day cricket, that’s what really caught my eye,” Hodge told according to The Sydney Morning Herald.
“Before that, I was a massive Kim Hughes fan, and Allan Border, but it evolved into Deano. We used to buy the cricket magazines and get the posters and Deano was one which I always put up.”
“I enjoyed that. He did it for his own reasons but it does make you stand out and get recognised. He had an affect on the youngsters, for sure,” Hodge said.
“When he showed up, it was like Christmas for everyone. Having a legend coming to play for Melbourne was always a joy for everyone,” Hodge said.
Dean Jones was sort of a showman with his zinc cream smeared on his bottom lip and being the first international cricketer to don sunglasses on the field. Hodge also went on to reveal how he got his nickname ‘Bunkie’. It was the time when a 15-year-old Hodge shared a room with Dean Jones.
“That’s where he brought that nickname out. It was the first time I had really gone away with a bunch of men. I had gone to the cricket academy … I said I still slept in a bunk at home. They found that interesting that I was going to make a Sheffield Shield debut but I still slept in bunk beds,” Hodge said.
“We spent a lot of time together. I know he was at the crease when I made my first century, against Tasmania. That was a pretty cool moment,” Hodge said.
“Deano was always keen at any time of the day to talk cricket, especially batting. In fact, I was happy to ask questions. When you actually get a chance to spend time with someone who has played one-day cricket and Test match cricket and been successful at it, it’s good fun to talk about,” Hodge said.
“You would talk about various bowlers around the world how did you face Wasim Akram, all sorts of bowlers.”
The legendary Australian cricketer will be honoured at his home groung Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) during the Tea Break on first day of the India versus Ausralia Boxing Day Test on Saturday.