HARD TO IMAGINE THAT CRICKET EPHEMERA FOR THE SOON TO RETIRE MICHAEL CLARKE WILL BE WORTH MUCH IN THE FUTURE. Are we wrong?
Michael Clarke made his first class debut for New South Wales as a seventeen-year-old in the 1999–2000 Sheffield Shield (then called the Pura Milk Cup). At the time he was a student at the Australian Institute of Sport.
Clarke made his One Day International debut in January 2003 against England at Adelaide and his Test debut for Australia in October 2004 against India.
In 2005, Clarke won the Allan Border medal.
The Allan Border Medal is considered to be the most prestigious individual prize in Australian cricket. First awarded in 2000, the medal is named after the former Australian captain and recognises the most outstanding Australian cricketer of the past season as voted by his peers, the media and umpires. Votes are cast after each game on a 3–2–1 basis, with a weighting applied to give both Test and One Day International play. This card marks Clarke winning the medal in 2005. He won the medal again in 2009 (shared with Ricky Ponting), 2012 and 2013.
On 6 January 2008, Clarke dismissed Harbhajan Singh, RP Singh and Ishant Sharma in the second last over of the day, with just eight minutes remaining, to claim the final three wickets and win the Test match for Australia (at one stage he was on a hat trick, dismissing both Singhs on consecutive deliveries). His innings figures were 3 for 5 in 1.5 overs. Australian captain Ricky Ponting had declared that morning, setting India a total of 333 to chase and allowing Australia arguably too little time to bowl out the visitors. Clarke’s wickets ensured that Australia retained the Border-Gavaskar Trophy in 2008 and kept their world record equalling 16 match win streak alive.
After the retirement of Adam Gilchrist, in April 2008 Clarke was named vice-captain of the Australian side. Clarke missed the start of the 2008 tour of the West Indies following the death of partner’s father, meaning Hussey took over as vice-captain for the start of the tour. Soon after Clarke joined up with the squad, he scored a century in the second Test in Antigua, going on to captain the side in the final two One Day Internationals, both of which were won, in the absence through injury of Ponting.
Summary of Clarke’s career from Cricket.com.au:
Clarke’s batting has reached record-breaking levels since taking over as captain, and the summer of 2013-14 saw him lead his side back to the summit of Test cricket.
Imaginative and attacking captaincy has been an impressive feature of Clarke’s reign as skipper, and his leadership qualities were there for all to see during Australia’s Ashes whitewash and series victory in South Africa.
That famous win against the Proteas also included arguably Clarke’s greatest performance as a batsman. The skipper finished unbeaten on 161 at Newlands after bravely surviving a brutal spell from Morne Morkel, with scans later revealing he had played most of the innings with a fractured shoulder.
Having been harshly targeted by some fans when victories were hard to come by, Clarke has successfully turned the tide of public opinion in his favour.
Beyond cards, here is another type of ephemera from Clarke – sticker from a cricket bat.