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Monday, 10 June, 2002, 12:07 GMT 13:07 UK
Shaun Pollock Q&A
Warren Hegg whips off the bails
Pollock is stumped during Warwickshire's B&H semi-final
Thrasy Petropoulos

Q. Have you come to terms with all the emotions you will have been through over the past week?

A. It has been a hell of a week, ranging from the sheer disbelief that Hansie has passed away to the excitement of winning a semi-final with Warwickshire and booking a place at Lord's.

I left for South Africa on Tuesday straight after the Sunday League, went to the funeral Wednesday, back that night, arrived back here Thursday, went up to Manchester and played the B&H Cup semi-final on Friday.

You have to try to move on as quickly as you can. I often found myself thinking of Hansie during the semi and I was struggling with flu too which didn't make it any easier.

Pollock attended last weeke's funeral in Bloemfontein
Cronje's death shocked South African cricket

But it was also a nice distraction. It's the game that both of us loved so it was just nice to be out there playing.

I don't think I've come to terms with it. You probably don't see the guy for three or four months in any case because of tours or county commitments, so it was only at the funeral when it began to sink in.

It was good to see his parents and his wife. But it will probably only be brought home when there is another incident or perhaps something completely unrelated.


Q. How and when did you hear of Hansie's death?

A. It was during our championship match in Southampton. I came off the field at lunch on the Saturday and my wife came along with Bob Woolmer and told me.

At that stage I was just in shock. I couldn't believe it. My mind went through so many emotions and thoughts but basically it was just disbelief.

The last time I saw him was when we played a one-day international against Australia in Bloemfontein. But I would see him from time to time. We went down to his house a few times, particularly with him working in Jo'berg.


Q. Do you think the mood towards him was changing?

A. From his perspective he was definitely more positive about the future and looking forward to it. He had moved into the business world and he was the sort of guy who enjoyed a challenge.

Pollock's spell as captain has been largely successful
Pollock succeeded Cronje as South African skipper

I don't think I had ever seen him happier with his wife. That is why it came as such a blow. He really wanted to make up for what he had done wrong.

And he was getting things back on track. He realised he had made a mistake.

I believe he had the courage to own up to something he had done wrong and he was looking to make amends. He knew it would take time be he was determined to do it.


Q. Do you think his legacy will be as a captain or a match-fixer?

A. He had a big impact on the side and what he taught us doesn't just get discarded because he has done something wrong.


Q. Does something like this make you think twice about the time you spend away from your wife?

A. Definitely. You realise the importance of certain things and you take cognisance of what is happening in your life. It is easy to get too caught up with what is going on on the field but you have to be aware of the bigger picture of life.

Carter hit a winning boundary off the last ball against Lancashire
Neil Carter was the hero at Old Trafford

It's not an ideal lifestyle. There is no hiding from the time you spend away from your loved ones.

But it is the sort of lifestyle you make now and in the future you look to make amends and spend more quality time at home.


Q. And I suppose that taking part in such an incredible semi-final against against Lancashire (a last-wicket, last-ball victory) reminds you of the enjoyment in the game?

A. It certainly reinforces the enjoyment side. There is no doubt that it is a game I enjoy playing.

I was lucky enough to have been given the talent to play cricket and the enjoyment you get out of it, the exhilaration you get out of victory makes it worthwhile.

See also:

07 Jun 02 | Counties
19 May 02 | Counties
31 May 02 | Counties
27 May 02 | Counties
20 May 02 | Cricket
21 Oct 02 | Cricket
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