The fair toil of underrated John Maguire


There are few extra backhanded compliments in cricket than ‘fair toiler’, but it surely’s additionally one of those correct description, particularly the ‘toiling’ section.

Everyone knows the species: medium pacers who don’t get a lot swing or tempo however who can also be relied upon to bowl never-ending overs, conserving issues tight, by no means being too frightening or too immediate however conserving the batters fair.

Different phrases used to explain fair toilers come with ‘lionhearted’, ‘workhorse’, ‘packhorse’, ‘dependable into-the-wind seamer’, ‘retro’ and ‘just right group guy’.

Within the bowling hierarchy fair toilers rank neatly beneath the speedsters and leggies, but continuously captains like to have them of their line-up as a result of they’re extra dependable. Fair toilers infrequently tear via an opposition – like, say, Mitchell Johnson. However additionally they infrequently price you a chain via spraying the ball far and wide – once more like, say, Mitchell Johnson.

The smarter selectors even realise that during some international locations fair toilers do significantly better than speedsters or leg spinners, like in India, New Zealand and England. Our selectors aren’t at all times amongst those.

Few bowlers toiled extra in truth within the early Nineteen Eighties than John ‘Moose’ Maguire, the right-arm fast-medium bowler who performed 3 Assessments and 23 ODIs for Australia.

Maguire used to be from Queensland, a state which has a outstanding observe report in the case of generating fair toilers – Andy Bichel, Michael Neser, Dirk Tazelaar, Geoff Dymock et cetera. They pound away underneath the recent Brisbane solar, nobly serving their state, uncomplaining, whilst the 150-clicks-and-over brigade – Carl Rackemann, Craig McDermott, Jeff Thomson, et cetera – get the clicking and the short observe to the nationwide aspect.

Maguire used to be born in 1956. Like any other liked Queenslander, Sam Trimble, he used to be in the beginning from New South Wales, in Maguire’s case Murwillumbah. His circle of relatives lived in Lismore for a number of years ahead of shifting to Brisbane when Maguire used to be 15.

He didn’t make his grade cricket debut (for Wynnum Manly) till he used to be 20. It appears he used to be found out enjoying warehouse cricket, a contest for workers of Brisbane business industry properties. He made his top quality debut for Queensland in 1977-78, taking advantage of Jeff Thomson’s absence from the Check group. Maguire took 6-68 in a recreation in opposition to Victoria, and he was a Queensland common in 1978-79 within the absence of Thommo, who had ‘retired’ in the second one season of International Collection Cricket in an try to play for Packer).

After International Collection Cricket, Maguire discovered it exhausting to discover a spot with Geoff Dymock, Thommo and Rackemann however was a standard in 1981–82.

Regardless of the unsexiness of Maguire’s bowling, his forged line and duration have been spotted, to not point out his top degree of health and very good angle. He even bowled a bouncer that hit Rick Darling of South Australia within the eye all the way through a Protect recreation, successfully wrecking Darling’s profession.

Credit score: Allsport UK/Allsport

The selectors picked Maguire within the ODI group in 1982-83. The instances of this are attention-grabbing. Maguire used to be enjoying in opposition to NSW for Queensland in a Protect recreation in Brisbane. Queensland Cricket Affiliation chairman Norm McMahon held up play all the way through the New South Wales innings to advise that Maguire used to be booked on a 7pm flight to Melbourne that night time to play within the International Collection Cup world in opposition to England following health doubts about Australian tempo trio Jeff Thomson, Geoff Lawson and Rodney Hogg.

Maguire left the sector an hour ahead of stumps whilst NSW had been nonetheless batting, with the bowler on figures of 2-80. Maguire used to be changed via bowler Michael Maranta, who batted in Maguire’s position for the second one innings. Queensland ended up shedding that recreation via an innings and 5 runs. I’m now not certain any further runs from Maguire would’ve made a distinction.

He used to be made twelfth guy and used to be dropped, however he used to be known as into the ODI group for some video games.

At this degree Maguire used to be a cartographic draughtsman with the Queensland Woodland Division. “I don’t in reality opt for the fanfare, “ he mentioned that season, ahead of including “I assumed that if I labored exhausting and were given a few breaks, it used to be conceivable” to get picked for Australia. “I were given my alternative handiest via accidents.”

He toured Sri Lanka with the Australian group in 1983 with out enjoying within the Check – Australia went for 2 spinners– even though he performed some ODIs. He didn’t make the International Cup squad in 1983, and in hindsight Australia may’ve been taking Maguire relatively than, say, Jeff Thomson.

Maguire made his Check debut in opposition to Pakistan in December 1983, changing an injured Rodney Hogg, taking 3-111 in a run-heavy recreation. It used to be just a one-off look, however Maguire was a standard within the ODI aspect that summer time, by no means stealing the display however at all times offering consistent improve.

Maguire used to be picked within the Australian squad to excursion the West Indies in 1984, no-one’s favorite decided on, however as Peter McFarline mentioned, “Maguire is ready to do the exhausting paintings this is vital on a excursion like this”.

Bob Simpson mentioned “I believe Maguire could also be the wonder of the excursion. He’s a good exhausting employee and can bowl with endurance for hours. The West Indies batsmen have proven they may be able to be pissed off into error and I believe Maguire could also be the bowler to do it”.

Simpson used to be appropriate. Maguire became out to be essentially the most a hit bowler on excursion, with 26 top quality wickets at 25, a greater consequence than Lawson, Rackemann, Hogg or Terry Alderman (or Tom Hogan or Greg Matthews. He performed in handiest the closing two Assessments, taking 3-121 and 4-57 – the latter used to be Australia’s second-best bowling efficiency of the excursion.

Maguire’s 1-28 off 9 overs in the second one ODI performed a key position in Australia’s one world victory at the excursion. His seven check wickets at 27 used to be the most productive moderate of any bowler.

Peter McFarline summarised Maguire’s excursion via writing “despatched because the workhorse, he used to be moment, narrowly to [Rodney] Hogg used to be the most productive of the tempo brigade. A good toiler, who can opt for hours in a spell, he confirmed nice tenacity whilst missing the herbal skill of a few others. His loss of tempo negated a few of his just right paintings”. Maguire additionally went at the one-day excursion to India in 1984, enjoying in all 5 ODIs.

Maguire had a very good summer time in 1984-85, taking 46 wickets at 27.67, together with 6-48 in opposition to the traveling Indies for Queensland. He used to be twelfth guy within the first Check however used to be not able to wreck into the Check aspect for the remainder of the collection, because the selectors went for Lawson, Hogg, Alderman, and new boy Craig McDermott.

Extra unusually, Maguire used to be now not picked for any ODIs. I’m certain he used to be mentioned, however the selectors most well-liked Rod McCurdy. Maguire used to be additionally just about being decided on within the Ashes squad to excursion England in 1985. When unique possible choices Terry Alderman and Rod McCurdy printed they’d signed to play in South Africa over the 1985–86 and 1986-87 summers, they had been changed via Carl Rackemann and Maguire. Then again, it used to be then printed they’d each signed as neatly and had been not able to excursion. They’d get replaced via Jeff Thomson and Dave Gilbert.

Generic cricket ball

(Steven Paston – EMPICS/Getty Pictures)

Like the opposite rise up vacationers, Maguire used to be banned from top quality cricket in Australia for 2 years and from consultant cricket for 3 years. The primary summer time in South Africa he took 21 wickets at 25.90, which used to be first rate. The second one summer time went in reality neatly – Maguire took 33 wickets at 23 (together with 6-61 in one of the vital unofficial Assessments). In 1986 he performed within the Lancashire League.

It’s attention-grabbing to hypothesise what would’ve came about if Maguire hadn’t long gone to South Africa and been to be had for excursions that might’ve suited his bowling – houses of the fair toiler like England, New Zealand and India. I am getting the sensation he would’ve completed neatly however would even have been the closing one picked and the primary one dropped, which is most definitely a large explanation why Maguire made up our minds to visit South Africa.

Maguire performed Protect cricket in 1987-88 and 1988-89, bowling neatly however now not slightly neatly sufficient to get into the nationwide aspect. Ern Toovey, Queensland selector, mentioned in 1987-88 that “Maguire has stunned me with the best way he has evolved his tempo. He’s very fast, quicker than ahead of. He’ll do the hack paintings”. Thank you, Ern. What did Maguire call to mind when he heard the ones varieties of issues?

In 1989 Maguire won an be offering to go back to South Africa to play for Japanese Province, who had been captained via Maguire’s previous Queensland teammate Kepler Wessels. He agreed, that means Maguire used to be banned for ten years – at the side of different rise up vacationers who went again, like Rod McCurdy, Kim Hughes, Steve Smith and Mike Haysman. Maguire bowled brilliantly, taking 60 top quality wickets at 15 in 1989-90, successful the South African cricketer of the yr award and serving to them proportion the Currie Cup and win the Nissan Protect and Benson and Hedges Evening Collection – no matter they’re.

Maguire bowled 359 overs within the Currie Cup, 63 of them within the ultimate. He used to be supported via fellow Aussie McCurdy who had additionally joined Japanese Province, and took 45 wickets at 23.40.

Consistent with Wisden, Maguire “bowled extra overs than any person all season, 430.2, and at fast-medium used to be apparently tireless, including to the undying virtues of line and duration a real urge for food for bowling and a devoted solution to health. Mins after a fit he could be out jogging. Along with his bowling, he hit a career-best 65 now not out within the Currie Cup to rescue his aspect after Gerbrand Grobler had despatched Japanese Province tumbling to 116 for 8 in opposition to Northern Transvaal”.

Maguire returned to Japanese Province for 1990-91, taking 52 wickets at 23.4. He then performed for Leicestershire in 1991 as its in a foreign country participant. Consistent with the native paper, “one of the vital qualities that attracted them used to be his famed willingness to bowl all day”. Bob Simpson used to be group supervisor for Leicestershire on the time and Maguire used to be a Simpson-type participant. The Queenslander took 77 wickets at 31.64 over the 1991 English season and Wisden wrote “Leicestershire owed a substantial debt to the Australian fast-medium bowler, John Maguire for his efforts that summer time” even though the group didn’t do really well – an inside record on the county mentioned hiring Simpson used to be “a mistake”. Maguire signed to the county for 2 years however it sounds as if requested for a unencumber for 1992 “for private and industry causes”.

The South African ban used to be lifted in August 1991 after South Africa used to be re-admitted to international cricket. Queensland thought to be recalling Maguire in 1991-92 but it surely didn’t occur, and he performed not more top quality cricket after 1991.

I don’t know what’s came about to Maguire since then. His saggy inexperienced got here into the ownership of Russell Crowe, who offered it.

John Maguire had a fascinating profession that includes some ODI victories, a rise up vacationer, a disastrous West Indies excursion, a club of a robust state aspect that would by no means win the massive prize. He took numerous wickets, were given to commute the sector and did some superb issues. That’s lovely just right for a good toiler.



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