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Brearley delivers Bradman Oration

Brearley delivered the Oration in Melbourne
Brearley delivered the Oration in Melbourne

Mike Brearley, the former England captain and Chairman of MCC's World Cricket committee, has delivered the 11th Bradman Oration, in Melbourne.

Drawing on his second career as a psychoanalyst, Brearley attempted to answer the question: what is the point of sport, and in particular cricket?

In a double Ashes Series year, his 40-minute Oration discussed instances of sportsmanship, co-operation and rivalry between the two teams - as well as in other contests.

Incidents from Ashes history which Brearley drew upon included the famous Flintoff-Lee moment at Edgbaston in 2005 and the battle between Derek Randall and Dennis Lillee in the Centenary Test.

He perhaps came closest to answering his own question during the speech with these words: "The institution of sport, with its challenges and opportunities, its companionship with team mates and opponents alike, offers a setting for activities that enrich life, that build character, and that help develop the complex balance between being an individual and being part of a group or team."

Brearley's Bradman Oration

Brearley is widely regarded as England's finest captain and one of the best to have played the game.

He skippered England in 31 of his 39 Test appearances, winning 17 of those fixtures.

He famously led his side to an Ashes Series win in 1981; taking over from Ian Botham and transforming the fortunes of both his predecessor and the England side in one of the most famous series ever played.

The former Middlesex captain is a Member of the MCC Committee and has been Chairman of the World Cricket committee since 2011.

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