Former Australian wicket-keeper-batsman Adam Craig Gilchrist was born on November 14, 1971, in Bellingen, New South Wales, Australia.
An aggressive left-handed batsman and highly regarded wicket-keeper, he shifted to Lismore where he captained the Kadina High School’s cricket team. Later, Gilchrist was selected by the NSW under-17 team. After being offered a scholarship by London-based Richmond Cricket Club, he also represented Old Actonians Cricket Club’s under-17 team.
His first break came in 1991 when Australia Young Cricketers selected Gilchrist. He toured England with them and played in youth ODIs and Tests. When he returned to Australia late in 1991,
the Australian Cricket Academy accepted him. In 1992, Gilchrist played for the Australian Cricketers’ Association against Australia’s state teams Second XI.
In the 1992–93 season, he made his first-class debut for New South Wales. Gilchrist played only as a batsman as they had an established wicket-keeper in Phil Emery. As his stint with NSW did not prove to be a very successful one, he moved over to Western Australia in the 1994-95 season.
In 1995, Gilchrist toured England as part of the Young Australia team which played games against English counties. He, however, made his mark for Western Australia in the 1995-96 season, starring both with the bat and wicket-keeping.
In 1996, he was rewarded as he was selected in the Australian ODI team, replacing injured Ian Healy. He made his ODI debut against South Africa in Faridabad. In the 1997-98 season, he cemented his place in the Aussie ODI team after Healy was dropped. But his form as a middle-order batsman was not great in ODIs. Gilchrist made it count after he was asked to open the innings.
He failed to star with the bat in the 1999 Cricket World Cup until in the finals where he scored 54 against Pakistan to help Australia lift the World Cup. He made his Test debut in November 1999 in Brisbane against Pakistan. Gilchrist’s Test career peaked in the 2001 Ashes series as he scored 348 runs at an average of 68 and accounted for 26 dismissals. Australia went to lift the Ashes by defeating England 4-1 in the five-match series. He played a key role with the bat again when Australia defended its World Cup title in 2003. In the final against India, he scored a quick-fire 57 off 48 balls.
Although he faced ups and downs in the Test format between 2004 and 2006, except when Gilchrist took over as the captain and managed a 2-1 victory over India in the subcontinent.
In the 2007 World Cup final, he scored 149 off 104 balls against Sri Lanka to help his team lift the World Cup again.
He played in the inaugural edition of the T20 World Cup in 2007. He later played in the IPL for Hyderabad-based Deccan Chargers between 2008-2010 and from 2011 to 2013 for Kings XI Punjab.
In January 2008, he announced his decision to retire from all forms of international cricket. In 2013, he retired from all forms of cricket.
In November 2007, Gilchrist was voted the greatest Australian ODI cricketer ever by his peers.
He was named one of the five Widen Cricketers of the Year 2002. In 2004, Gilchrist was the only then-current Australian cricketer to be named in Richie Benaud’s Greatest XI.
He along with Kumar Sangakkara is known as the best wicket-keeper–batsmen in the history of cricket.
He was one of the rare breeds of cricketers who would walk without waiting for an umpire’s decision. It earned him respect as well as criticism from his own teammates. Gilchrist said he “felt isolated” and “silently accused of betraying the team. Implicitly I was made to feel selfish, as if I was walking for the sake of my own clean image, thereby making everyone else look dishonest.”
He is now an is an ambassador for the charity World Vision in India. Gilchrist is also a commentator on various channels.