Cricket's Best Lookalikes: Ashton Agar/Adam Scott and More
When Australia’s last man came out to bat in the first innings of the 2013 Ashes series, a murmur circulated around Trent Bridge: What is Adam Scott doing here?
A few minutes later when he lofted Graeme Swann back over his head for six, as if chipping a seven iron on to the 18th green at Muirfield, all qualms were forgotten.
Afterwards, rumours that England’s National Selector Geoff Miller was spotted searching Wikipedia to see if Tiger Woods had some British ancestry proved to be unfounded.
But seriously, as per Paul Hayward's article in the Telegraph, it has been well documented that the Aussie’s great new hope, Ashton Agar, shares more than a passing resemblance to his countryman, the US Masters champion Adam Scott.
And if the hard-hitting spin bowler can have a career as successful, as the man currently ranked fourth in the official World Golf rankings, then England may be seeing a lot more of Agar in years to come.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the other lookalikes in the cricketing world.
Daniel Vettori and Louis Theroux
Sadly for former Black Caps skipper Daniel Vettori he’s unable to go on holiday to Middle America these days, due to being wanted by various bizarre and sometimes scary subcultures for producing revealing documentaries about them.
In actual fact, British filmmaker Louis Theroux is the hunted man but the bespectacled pair are almost indistinguishable.
Vettori made his debut at the age of 18 and, despite being hampered by persistent injuries, boasts a record-breaking 112 Test caps.
Starting out as a spin bowler who could bat a bit, he gradually became a genuine all-rounder and New Zealand certainly missed his presence in their series defeat against England this summer.
Theroux continues to make thought-provoking documentaries for the BBC, shining a light into dimly lit corners of society, while giving extremists enough rope to hang themselves.
Brett Lee and Simon Whitlock
One of this pair is a supreme athlete, capable of performing at high pressure in front of hostile drink-fuelled crowds.
His accuracy is unquestionable and he is regarded as one of the great Australian sporting icons.
The other is called Brett Lee and is famous for being the recipient of Andrew Flintoff’s sportsmanship and that Bollywood video.
But seriously, the man known as Bing to his teammates, terrorised batsman throughout the cricket world, bowling at speeds of over 150km/h and taking 310 Test wickets.
Simon Whitlock, as well as possessing an advanced goatee, is one of the world’s greatest darts players. The 2012 European Championship winner comes onstage to the Men At Work classic and Land Down Under, and is known as the Wizard of Oz on the circuit.
Ian Chappell and Bruce Forsyth
"Nice to see you, to see you nice," said Ian Chappell as Sir Ian Botham marched out to the wicket.
Brucie, the tap dancing king of British soft entertainment hosted a succession of game shows, such as Generation Game, You Bet, Play Your Cards Right and currently presides over Strictly Come Dancing, A.K.A., the cricketers’ retirement home.
Ian Chappell, scored 5,000 Test runs, which included 14 centuries, while captaining the Baggy Greens for 30 Tests matches. Now, a commentator for Channel Nine in Australia, he even has a stand named after him at the Adelaide Oval. Didn’t he do well?
Stuart Broad and Draco Malfoy (Tom Felton)
Excerpt from Harry Potter and the Lethal Pace Attack:
When Slytherin challenged Gryffindor to a game of T20 at the picturesque Hogwarts Oval, Harry Potter should have have suspected something was amiss.
A straight-batted opener in the mould of Mike Atherton, he walked to the ground with loyal pal and part-time off spinner, Ron Weasley who was carrying his pads and box.
"So what do you know about their attack Ron?" asked Harry.
"Same as last year. Built around Draco Malfoy but he’s military medium pace at best".
"Good," replied Harry, inadvertently touching the lightning-flash shaped scar on his forehead, that he'd ironically received when facing a touring Caribbean side last year.
They arrived at the ground and were shocked at the amount of grass left on the wicket.
"Hmm," said Harry who was due to open the batting.
Then, the Slytherin team emerged from the pavilion and Potter noticed that Malfoy had enjoyed a height spurt in these last couple of weeks. In fact, he looked exactly like Stuart Broad...the England quick bowler.
And when Harry heard the tall blonde paceman checking that with the umpires that the Decision Review System was installed, he realised this was another one of Voldemort's evil schemes.
He turned to his pal. "Tell you what Ron...why don’t you open the batting today?"
Ricky Ponting and Bruno Kirby
If you wanted a shifty slightly rodent-faced looking man to come out in hostile conditions and bat for your life, it would be the man with over 24,000 career runs to his name: Ricky Ponting.
If you wanted a shifty slightly rodent-faced looking man to come out in hostile conditions and play a supporting role in a gangster film, it would be the man who starred opposite Robert De Niro in The Godfather Part II, Bruno Kirby.
With just a few T20 games left to play, Ponting’s career is winding down. Talk of an Ashes comeback pre-series as reported by Chris Barrett in the Sydney Morning Herald, were dismissed as ludicrous.
But with the ex-captain averaging of 123.25 in his short spell in County cricket and the Baggy Greens batting line-up in disarray, the prospect seems more appealing right now.
Kirby, one of the great character actors, sadly passed away in 2006 but not before appearing in a plethora of classics including When Harry Met Sally, Good Morning, Vietnam and Spinal Tap.
Ryan Sidebottom and Mick Hucknall
Legendary hit maker Mick Hucknall has shifted 50 million albums and possesses a wild mane that seems to entice the ladies, to the extent he claims to have slept with thousands of woman.
The same can be said about Ryan Sidebottom...well about the hair anyway. Although he has taken over 500 first class wickets.
The Yorkshire born pace bowler had a couple of years at the top, leading the England attack, and remains one of the most testing bowlers in county cricket. Especially if conditions are swinging.
After a series of hits, Hucknall disbanded Simply Red in 2009 and continues to perform as a solo artist.
See also: Sideshow Bob
Herschelle Gibbs and Vin Diesel
Both of these performers have learned to narrow down their field of expertise and focus on just one area of expertise.
Vin Diesel once sought challenging roles and even wrote some critically acclaimed works himself.
These days, the man christened Mark Sinclair Vincent deals mainly in sequels and churning out mindless action films where plot is a mere afterthought to a plethora of car chases, brawls and gun fights.
Now, the chronicles of Herschelle Gibbs would make a good movie.
Currently in the twilight of his career, the South African has courted controversy and cricketing excellence throughout his career but these days sticks to the T20 format, plying his trade in the IPL and Big Bash among others.
Renowned as an exceptional fielder and a big hitting batsman, nobody who witnessed his 175 against Australia will forget it in a hurry. Sadly the same can’t be said about Fast & Furious 6.
Richie Benaud and Yoda
Richie Benaud is one of cricket's elder statesman and knows everything there is to know about the game...and the universe for that matter.
Similarly Yoda, the shrunken green Jedi Master from the popular sci-fi series, Star Wars, is a huge cricket fan.
After a hard day of training new recruits, he likes nothing better than sitting back in his cave and listening to Test Match Special.
In fact, when he himself was undergoing his training, before being unleashed on an actual lightsabre, he used a classic Graeme Hick endorsed Duncan Fearnley blade.
Benaud, took 3,000 wickets and in a review of his autobiography he was described by Harold de Andrado as:
one of the greatest cricketing personalities as, player, researcher, writer. Critic, author, organiser, adviser and student of the game
Joe Root and the Milkybar Kid
If he wasn’t nailed on to be England’s opening batsman for at least the next decade, Root could have a lucrative career as a front man for the popular brand of white chocolate.
Fortunately after piling on 180 runs in the mammoth Test victory for England at Lords, the Yorkshire starlet can focus on breaking run records rather than worrying about contributing to the worldwide obesity epidemic.
Since his debut in 1961 the Milkybar Kid has continued to go from strength to strength.
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