I have finished reading the book. And I can’t say I have been disappointed. Gilly, in my opinion, has shown us his true colours. He takes us on his journey — from the time he was a kid who wanted to be the fastest bowler for Australia through to the trials and tribulations in getting selected to finally, all the ups and downs that come with being away from the ones you love and the intense media scrutiny.
Gilly comes across as being as human as the next person, as fallible as the next. He is a worrier. He has had months of being down in the dumps. No, he does not say he suffered from depression, but it is heartening to know that a person held in such esteem is not afraid of telling us what he went through. This, in spite of putting on his ‘cape of bravado’ (as he calls it) during his career. He is not shy of expressing his emotions. He talks about the number of times in his life that he has broken down and cried.
He has openly discussed his pessimism (which comes with being a worrier — as I should know!). He has talked about his problems with the manner in which the ICC has handled things, as has Cricket Australia. He talks about his friendships and the times when he has had a fall-out with friends (especially Michael Slater). He talks about his relationship with Warne (which had undergone intense media speculation).
On the more personal side, he takes us into his family life — his relationship with his parents, his siblings, his wife, his kids.
He talks about the joy of touring to the likes of England and India (after the initial shock, that is). And of course, he tells us about the highs and lows of his career. Most importantly, he talks about his stance on walking and his perceptions of those that don’t (he has nothing against them and doesn’t think they are dishonourable).
In short, it is an amazing window to his life. He does not claim to be a saint in any way whatsoever. And I think, that is the most appealing aspect.
It is great to see someone so idolised being as human as I am.
Feeling shitty about things.
Feeling thankful for all they have.