The Gazette (Derwent Valley) - - FRONT PAGE - WADE GLEE­SON

IT WAS all cricket talk at the Gretna Green Ho­tel last Fri­day night where a large crowd gath­ered to hear the sto­ries of for­mer Aus­tralian fast bowler Jeff “Thommo” Thom­son.

Re­garded as the fastest pace bowler of all time, Thom­son min­gled with cricket fans and lo­cals in what was a great meet and greet ses­sion.

Thom­son gave a very good talk on his ca­reer, how it all started and play­ers he played with and against.

When he had fin­ished his play­ing ca­reer and was coach­ing Queens­land at the age of 45, Thomo would train with the play­ers and re­mark­ably was still quicker than his fastest bowlers in the team.

He was en­cour­aged to pull the whites back on but the youth pol­icy at the time pre­vented a come­back — but the bloke still had it even many years on.

Auc­tions of mem­o­ra­bilia were con­ducted by Rob Hil­lier who trav­els around with Thom­son on his vis­its.

Raf­fles were also run and won and some mem­o­ra­bilia was for sale.

Many peo­ple brought their own mem­o­ra­bilia which Thom­son was more than happy to sign.

In all it was a great evening. A big shout out to Phil and Colleen Sharpe of the Gretna Green Ho­tel for putting on the oc­ca­sion — well done.

Inset pic­ture: WADE GLEE­SON

FAST LANE: For­mer Aus­tralian fast bowler Jeff Thom­son in ac­tion in his hey­day; and, inset, sign­ing some books dur­ing his visit to Gretna as pub­li­can Phil Sharpe looks on.

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