A version of this article was first published in July 2020.
Stuart Broad’s remarkable journey from a premature baby to a fearsome fast bowler is celebrated by those who know him best.
The 37-year-old retirement announcement of Stuart Broad, who has taken 602 wickets in 167 Tests, is commemorated by close associates who share their stories about the renowned bowler.
Learn more about the personal and professional experiences that highlight Broad’s journey, from his early struggles as a premature infant to his legendary achievements as one of England’s most successful cricketers.
‘He Weighed 2lbs 2oz’
Stuart Broad was born prematurely, weighing only 2lbs 2oz. His father, Chris Broad, was a former England opening batter.
Stuart Broad’s early life was marked by his frailty as a child and his rapid growth into a 6ft 5in fast bowler, defying the odds and making his mark in cricket. His dad, Chris, reflects on the journey and expresses immense pride in his son’s achievements.
‘The Pads were past His Waist’
Stuart Broad’s early passion for cricket was evident as a young boy playing at Egerton Park CC. John Bailey, a former chairman, recalls the early days when Broad’s cricket prowess was just beginning to emerge.
From a small lad wearing his dad’s cricket jumper to becoming a towering fast bowler, Broad’s physical transformation was remarkable. He also demonstrated his early talent as a batsman and his passion for the game.
‘He is a Professor of the Game’
Stuart Broad’s technical prowess and analytical approach to the game are highlighted by his former teammate Jeremy Snape. Broad’s dedication to studying data and honing his skills enabled him to evolve into a bowling master.
Broad’s dedication to studying the game and analyzing his performance led to exceptional growth and success. His data-driven approach and constant pursuit of improvement have earned him a reputation as a cricketing intellect.
‘I’ll See His Name on My Phone and I’ll Know What It’s About’
Michael Vaughan, former England captain, reflects on Stuart Broad’s early days in Test cricket and the mutual respect they developed. Vaughan praises Broad’s determination and willingness to engage in thoughtful debates about the game.
Vaughan emphasizes the camaraderie and shared interests they have off the field, including their love for golf and engaging in friendly banter. Despite their occasional disagreements, their relationship remains strong.
‘He Wanted to Bat before the 60 all out at Trent Bridge’
Alastair Cook, former England captain, recalls Stuart Broad’s strong opinions and determination on the field. Cook appreciates Broad’s contributions as a bowler and batsman, and their shared experiences in the England cricket team.
Cook acknowledges Broad’s stubbornness, which stems from his focused and self-assured approach to the game. Despite occasional frustrations, Cook values Broad’s strong character and the independent thinking he brings to the team.
‘He Thinks He Can Rap’
Mark Wood, Broad’s former teammate, remembers his early encounters with Broad and his love for football. Wood also jokes about Broad’s attempts at rapping, where his posh accent does not quite match the style.
Wood fondly recalls singing with Broad on the way to a cricket match to boost spirits. He also highlights Broad’s on-field brilliance and his supportive nature towards teammates.