Alex Carey joins Australia’s wicket-keeping greats with his first Test clay


“He made the right decision. I advised him to say, ‘Look, you should really consider cricket if you feel like you have the faith and the confidence to do it.’

“Everyone in the Giants always knew they were going to do something, but we weren’t sure if it would be in the AFL.”

Carey is just the seventh of Australia’s 34 male Test wicketkeepers to have scored a century and the first since Brad Haddin scored 118 points in Adelaide in 2013/14. Of the 32 centuries of Australian stumps, 17 came from Adam Gilchrist’s bat. Batting was more of a second role for wicketkeepers until Gilchrist raised the bar.

His average of just under 40 is second among Australian wicketkeepers, behind only the incomparable Gilchrist.

Carey can now end his near-miss in Karachi as he turned 93 before an ill-considered sweep saw him become one of just two Test victims for Pakistani hitting star Babar Azam.

“When I’m driving, it’s like, ‘Why did I play that shot?'” said Carey.


Last summer there were some doubts about Carey’s future after a couple of shaky games in the Ashes but he’s got his work in order behind the stumps and also proved he can make invaluable runs in 7th place.

Bigger challenges with gloves and racquets await Carey next year as Pat Cummins’ side aim to become only the second Australian side to win a series in India and the first to claim Ashes glory in England since 2001 .

The spin-friendly stretches in India will test Carey’s technique behind the stumps, much like England, where the Dukes’ ball can swing amazingly after passing the batsman.

Carey’s AFL dream was written after the Giants recruited a bunch of midfielders in 2011. Lacking speed, he was at the bottom of a long line behind the likes of Callan Ward, Stephen Coniglio, Toby Greene, Adam Treloar and Taylor Adams. All have had notable careers in the league, though not all with the Giants.

“It’s been a bumpy journey along the way, footy didn’t work and cricket didn’t work after a couple of games,” said Carey. “It’s one of those things. Never give up what you want and hopefully it will come. I’m just lucky it came my way.”

Carey was held in high esteem by the Giants for his work ethic and character, traits also admired by the holy of holies of Australian cricket.

“As is the way with Alex Carey, there was real humility in the way he celebrated that. It will mean so much to him. But this calm and my whole body is tingling,” former coach Justin Langer said on Channel Seven.

“He’s one of the really, really good guys in Australian cricket and he should be very proud of this moment. The reason you love to see people like Alex Carey rewarded is because he works so hard too. He’s an incredibly fit athlete. That won’t go on the shelf. You have to work hard for that.

“He’s working hard on his wicketkeeping. He works hard on his shots and on being the consummate team man. It’s just really exciting for people like Alex Carey to reach those milestones.” Alex Carey joins Australia’s wicket-keeping greats with his first Test clay

Ryan Sederquist

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