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Richard Hadlee inducted into Hall of fame

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Legendary all-rounder Sir Richard Hadlee was formally inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame during the lunch interval of the third and final Test between New Zealand and India at Basin Reserve, Wellington on Friday.

The 57-year-old from Christchurch, who was appointed as a Member of British Empire (MBE) in 1981 and knighted in 1990, received his commemorative cap from ICC President David Morgan as ICC Chief Executive Haroon Lorgat looked on.

After the ceremony Hadlee said: "Obviously, I am delighted. I have been fortunate enough during my life in cricket to be acknowledged in so many different ways and they are all very special in their own rights.

"But when you are one of the 55 in the history of the game that goes back to the 1800s through to the 20th century and when you look at some of the players who have also been inducted, to be part of that particular elite group is something very special indeed. So I am very grateful to be recognised in that way.

"This honour is right up there with the others. So many fantastic players have been recognised, some that I have played against, others that I watched and read about as a youngster, and many others in the early 1900s that were legendary in their own right and fantastic role models.

"I have a lot of respect for this award as I understand what all the players in this particular group had to go through to be able to become champion players.

"It would have been nice if my father (Walter Hadlee) was around. He would have been as proud as me to get this recognition. He had advised that I always play hard and play competitively to win. But he wanted the values of fair play and sportsmanship to be upheld always."

ICC President David Morgan said: "Sir Richard is without question one of world cricket's greatest all-rounders with 431 Test wickets and 3,124 runs. These numbers tell a story.

"Sir Richard was the first bowler to take 400 Test wickets and I had the additional pleasure of seeing him perform in partnership with Clive Rice at Nottingham's Trent Bridge.

"Today is a proud day for New Zealand and Nottingham and it is an honour for me to induct Sir Richard into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame."

Hadlee, one of five sons of former New Zealand captain Walter, is the only New Zealander in the initial intake of 55 players in the Hall of Fame*, a joint venture between the ICC and the Federation of International Cricketers' Associations (FICA).

Hadlee is regarded as one of the greatest exponents of the new ball. He was one of the four greatest all-rounders during the 1980s along with Imran Khan of Pakistan, England's Sir Ian Botham and Kapil Dev of India.

Hadlee played 86 Tests from 1973 to 1990 in which he took 431 wickets (at the time a world record), including the wicket of Devon Malcolm off his last ball in Test cricket, and also scored 3,124 runs. In 115 ODIs, he claimed 158 wickets and contributed 1,751 runs.

Hadlee's first destructive bowling performance came in his ninth Test, three years after his debut, when he took 11-58 against India at Christchurch and bowled New Zealand to an innings and 33 runs victory.

However, his effort of 10-100 in his 18th Test, including 6-26 in the second innings, is one of his most memorable performances, earning New Zealand its first-ever victory against England by 72 runs in Wellington. That 1977-78 series ended in a one-all draw after England won the second Test in Christchurch by 174 runs.

Seven years after making his debut and in his 27th Test, Hadlee took 5-34 and 6-68, and also scored 51 in the first innings as New Zealand held its nerve to beat a star-studded West Indies by one-wicket in the first Test in Dunedin. His victims in the Test included Gordon Greenidge, Clive Lloyd and Lawrence Rowe (twice), Michael Holding, Alvin Kallicharran, Deryck Murray, Derick Parry and Joel Garner.

In the second Test of that series in Christchurch, he recorded the first of his two centuries, scoring 103 off 92 balls as the match ended in a draw. In the drawn third and last Test, he took 5-137 as New Zealand won its first-ever series against the West Indies.

In one of the most memorable performances in the Trans-Tasman rivalry, in 1985-86, Hadlee took 15-123, including a career-best 9-52, in the Brisbane Test which New Zealand won by an innings and 41 runs.

Hadlee played first-class cricket for Canterbury, Nottinghamshire and Tasmania, capturing 1,490 wickets in 342 matches at an average of 18.11, including five wickets in an innings 102 times and 10 wickets in a match 18 times. He also scored 12,052 runs at an average of 31.71, including 14 centuries and 59 half-centuries.

Hadlee was declared New Zealand's Sportsman of the Year in 1980 and 1986, and New Zealand's Sportsperson for the last 25 Years in 1987 (shared with runner John Walker) before being adjudged New Zealand's Sportsperson of the Decade in 1987. He was the Wisden Cricketer of the Year in 1982.

Other ICC Cricket Hall of Famers to have received their caps so far in 2009 are ex-Australia wicketkeeper Rodney Marsh, 11 former West Indies players or their family members or representatives - batting greats Clive Lloyd and Sir Vivian Richards, champion all-rounder Sir Garfield Sobers, the three Ws Sir Everton Weekes, Sir Clyde Walcott and Sir Frank Worrell, opener Gordon Greenidge, fast bowlers Michael Holding, Malcolm Marshall and Andy Roberts, and star off-spinner Lance Gibbs - also ex-South Africa batsmen Barry Richards and Graeme Pollock - and former Pakistan stalwarts Javed Miandad, Hanif Mohammad and Imran Khan.

Further cap presentations will be made during the course of the year and a limited number of inductees, in addition to the 55 already chosen, will be named during 2009.

*ICC Cricket Hall of Fame - initial inductees (55):

Sydney Barnes, Bishan Bedi, Alec Bedser, Richie Benaud, Allan Border, Ian Botham, Geoffrey Boycott, Donald Bradman, Greg Chappell, Ian Chappell, Denis Compton, Colin Cowdrey, Kapil Dev, Sunil Gavaskar, Lance Gibbs, Graham Gooch, David Gower, WG Grace, Tom Graveney, Gordon Greenidge, Richard Hadlee, Walter Hammond, Neil Harvey, George Headley, Jack Hobbs, Michael Holding, Leonard Hutton, Rohan Kanhai, Imran Khan, Alan Knott, Jim Laker, Harold Larwood, Dennis Lillee, Ray Lindwall, Clive Lloyd, Hanif Mohammad, Rodney Marsh, Malcolm Marshall, Peter May, Javed Miandad, Keith Miller, Bill O'Reilly, Graeme Pollock, Wilfred Rhodes, Barry Richards, Vivian Richards, Andy Roberts, Garfield Sobers, Brian Statham, Fred Trueman, Derek Underwood, Clyde Walcott, Everton Weekes, Frank Woolley, Frank Worrell.