Andrew Symonds is remembered as a friend who was “loyal to the faith” by his loved ones at an ongoing memorial service in Townsville, Queensland.
Following the tragic death of Symonds in a car accident earlier this month, sports legends from across the country gathered in North Queensland to bid farewell to the cricket legend.
Former international teammates Adam Gilchrist, Darren Lehmann and Ricky Ponting shared the story of the man known as’ Roy ‘, whose current theme is an incredible feature of Symonds’ fidelity and integrity.
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“His friendship, his partner, he was almost loyal to a fault,” Gilchrist said.
“He was a naughty character, but his sense of loyalty, wanting everyone else to think more of himself, doing whatever he could on the field and outside to help others.
“Something that really jumped in the last week and a half, we [former teammates] Everyone has talked a lot about Roy, shared a lot of stories, and his cricketing exploits are rarely mentioned.
“He was one of the best cricketers in the game, an all-round genius.
“So this is proof of the quality of the cricketer he was, but we’re talking about Roy as a guy, and he was just a pure heart who got into trouble like anyone else, then he was remorseful. He dusted himself off. Off, and so was the apology, And then he just had to go to another to try to get it.
“He was loyal beyond belief, just good fun.”
Matthew Hayden, one of Symonds’ closest teammates, wrote a heartfelt tribute from India to an emotional song for his beloved departed partner where he is currently covering the IPL.
Lyman and Ponting also spoke of the lyrics of Symonds’ incredible talent on the field, with Lehman having the unique opportunity to play and coach the all-rounder.
“It was difficult to be a coach … but he was the first to be selected in any team,” Lehmann said.
“As a coach, I think he was the best player I ever coached. He was one of the best because he put the team first with everything he did.
“Coaching him was a joy, an absolute joy for the way he took it. He could play in all formats, and that’s the thing for me. He was just a great cricketer. He was a boxer and a champion.”
“The cricket team is something I think we need to talk to a lot about,” Ponting added.
“Yeah Al that sounds pretty crap to me, Looks like BT aint for me either … Looks like BT aint for me either, Looks like BT aint for me either, Looks like BT aint for me either, Looks like BT aint for me either, Looks like BT aint for me either, Looks like BT aint for me either.
“You just knew he could do it for you if you gave him some easy directions. He wanted the best for the team. He would do anything to save a run or give his teammates a better chance of winning. The game.”
Cricket Australia director Greg Royal, who was Symonds’ teammate for Queensland, also touched on his life, calling him “an example of all the best in our game”.
“He was one of us. He made us proud to be Australians,” he said.
“His struggles resonated with us, his victories inspired us. Always entertaining, charismatic. At once imperfect and flawless, at the same time unique and flawless.”
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