19 Facts about Nathan Astle – The Kiwi stalwart
Updated - Sep 15, 2015 12:04 pm
19 Facts about Nathan Astle – The Kiwi stalwart: Nathan Astle is a former New Zealand cricketer who is seen in high regards by the cricket experts and pundits. There are many cricketers who play the game but very few have been as charismatic as this prolific Kiwi player. He was an outright nightmare for any opponent captain while a sheer delight for his own skipper. As and when he got set he could destroy any bowling attack. Astle use to play shots all around the park and was equally apt against pacers and spinners.
The Black Caps ODI opener was particularly very good at playing cover drives which were a delight on the human eye. While his barbarous hooks and pulls didn’t have mercy for the bowlers. He was a wibbly-wobbly bowler as well who could roll his arms over and can get the breakthrough for his side at times.
On the occasion of his 44th birthday we list 19 Facts about Nathan Astle – The Kiwi stalwart:
Nathan was born on 15 September, 1971 in Christchurch, Canterbury.
2. East Christchurch-Shirley Cricket Club:
Astle has played for the East Christchurch-Shirley Cricket Club. This Club has produced cricketers like Bruce Taylor, Craig McMillan and Michael Papps. He was a no.6 batsman in the side who could bowl seam-ups as well.
3. Domestic Debut:
He made his First-Class as well as List-A debut for Canterbury in 1991/92. Astle made his First-Class debut against Central Districts. Although in his first three seasons he performed miserably.
4. Breakthrough season:
After his lackluster performances in the first three seasons he finally excelled during the 1994–95 season in which he accumulated 663 runs at an average of 55.25. More than anything else it was his three critical innings during the season – 96 against Auckland, 175 against Northern Districts and 191 against Wellington which impressed the national selectors.
5. International debut:
After his good performances in domestic circuit Astle finally got the national call-up in 1995. He made his ODI debut against West Indies in 1995 while he played his first Test match against Zimbabwe in 1996. But he didn’t perform well in his debut games.
6. Role of Glenn Turner:
In the early part of Astle’s international career, Glenn Turner was the New Zealand Coach. It was under the persistence of Turner, that Nathan Astle was promoted to the opening position in ODIs and he was selected for the Test side as well. And the rest as they say is history.
7. 1996 World Cup:
Nathan got off to a dream start in World Cup 1996 as he hammered his first World Cup century in his first World Cup match against England. Though after that there was nothing of which he would be proud off as he couldn’t score much in the remainder of the tournament.
8. 1996 tour of West Indies:
After a dismal World Cup campaign, he made a remarkable return to form against the West Indies side on New Zealand’s tour of West Indies in 1996. Nathan ended up as the highest run-scorer of the two-match Test series. In 2 matches, he scored 290 runs at an average of 72.50 and crossed the 50 run mark thrice out of 4 occasions.
9. Most hundreds in ODIs:
Nathan Astle has 16 ODI centuries to his credit. It is the most number of ODI centuries by a Kiwi cricketer in 50-overs format.
10. Fastest Test double century:
Astle holds the record of registering fastest double century, balls-wise in Test cricket. On March 16, 2002, the Kiwi great brought up his double century off only 153 deliveries against England at Christchurch. He perished on 222 runs, also his highest Test score. His jaw-dropping inning included 28 fours and 11 sixes.
11. Fourth innings record:
The New Zealand veteran also holds the record of second highest individual score in the fourth innings of a Test match. He had scored 222 runs against England in 2002. The list is topped by the West Indies cricketer George Headley who scored 223 runs against England in 1929/30 home series.
12. Most ducks in World Cup cricket:
Astle also holds the rather unwanted record of getting out on duck, for the most number of times in World Cup history till date. In 22 World Cup matches, on 5 occasions he has got out without opening his account.
13. County Cricket:
The dashing Kiwi batter represented Derbyshire, Durham and Nottinghamshire in County Cricket.
14. ICL stint:
He had a brief stint in the rebel Indian Cricket League (ICL) as well. Astle had represented Mumbai Champs in the inagural season of the league.
15. Love for Football and Auto Racing:
Astle was a good Football player as well. He has represented Rangers A.F.C. Club which is one of the oldest existing Canterbury Football Clubs located in Christchurch. While, he is also a speed freak and just loves Auto racing.
After taking retirement from International cricket, Nathan was appointed as the head of the Burnside West Christchurch University Cricket Club in 2009. It’s a Club in the Christchurch Metropolitan league and comes under the Canterbury Cricket Association.
In 2007, at Queen Birthday honors, Nathen Astle was made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for his excellent services to the game of cricket. In 1995, 1996 and 2002 he was named the “Player of the Year” by the New Zealand Cricket Almanack. While in 1998, he was honored with the prestigious “Player of the Year” award. The blistering Black Caps ODI opener was named the “One-Day International Batsman of the Year” in 2006.
18. Cricket career in numbers:
He represented New Zealand in 81 Tests and scored 4,702 runs at an average of 37.02 with 11 centuries and 24 half-centuries. He also took 51 wickets in Tests. While in 223 ODI’s, he scored 7090 runs with 16 tons and 41 fifties against his name. Astle also took 99 wickets in the 50-overs format. While in 4 T20Is, he scored 74 runs and claimed 4 wickets. Overall, he has taken 156 catches in international cricket.
Nathan Astle is married to Kelly. They have two children, son Liam and daughter Alyssa. Astle’s sister Lisa Marie Astle has represented the New Zealand women’s cricket team. Astle and his wife run a childcare center as well.