As the media pilloried Hilditch, I can see his pet dog acquiring a cult status, apart from a bragging right, in that part of the globe after its picture splashed all over Oz media.
This was precisely the provocation behind drawing up a unique Mammals, Aves and Pisces XI that assumed cricketing immortality over the years.
(Pix: Michael Marschall)
1. Andrew Hilditch’s pet dog: Outgrew former Oz top dog Hayden in stature.
2. The dog that left Hayden with gashed ankle in 2006: The canine attack happened when Hayden was jogging. For record, vets call it Pica, an appetite among the dogs for chewing non-nutritive substance.
3. The Bumble-Frisker of Mohali: The Punjab Police sniffer dog that inspected David ‘Bumble’ Lloyd’s backside in full public view during the India-England Test there last month. Witnesses include yours truly.
4. Clarrie Grimmet’s fox terrier: Played its part in developing 'flipper'. Grimmet would bowl for hours trying to perfect the occult art and the little creature would retrieve the ball. ICC is yet to recognize its contribution.
5. The stuffed sparrow at MCC Museum: In 1936, Jahangir Khan, playing for Cambridge University against MCC, sent down a delivery that hit a sparrow, which fell dead and headed for cricket folklore. The flight of the ball and the bird intercepted somewhere resulting in the mishap, even though Jahangir was a medium pacer and not a spinner.
6. Double Pigeon Martyrs of Oval: Paul Reiffel and Ajay Jadeja had blood on their hand in that match. Reiffel’s direct throw claimed a pigeon while Jadeja cut a delivery to third man to complete the double during the India-Australia match of the 1999 World Cup.
7. Guy the Gorilla: Ian Botham earned his nickname from this celebrity resident of the London Zoo in the 1960s-70s.
8. Kapil’s Buffalo: His father bought the buffalo so that Kapil could guzzle gallons of milk and grow strong. No wonder some of his sixes used to vanish in the milky way.
(Pix: Symonds' official website)
9. Fishes that Andrew Symonds caught: Salmon, trout...
10. Cockroaches Chris Broad spotted in Mohali: These little creatures went to find mention in the ICC Match Referee’s report after Broad noticed them in the umpires’ food trolley during the India-Australia Test match in Mohali last year.
11. Bhajji’s monkey: well, this one quite spooky. A ghost like inconclusive thing, with two rival sides frothing at the mouth trying to establish and dismiss its presence in the cantankerous Sydney Test.