|Full Name||Bradley John Hodge|
|Born||December 29, 1974 Sandringham, Victoria|
|Age||48 Years, 2 Months, 27 Days|
|Batting Style||Right Handed|
|Teams Played||Australia, Australia A, Australian Cricket Academy, Auckland, Durham, Lancashire, Leicestershire, Northern Districts, Wellington, Kolkata Knight Riders, Rajasthan Royals, Victoria, Australia Under-19, Kochi Tuskers Kerala, Adelaide Strikers, Melbourne Renegades, Melbourne Stars, Barisal Burners, Sylhet Thunder, Basnahira Cricket Dundee, St Lucia Zouks, Guyana Amazon Warriors, St Kitts and Nevis Patriots, Peshawar Zalmi, Australian Legends, Gilchrist XI|
Brad Hodge is a former Australian right-handed batter who also used to bowl part-time offies. Having enjoyed a successful career on the domestic circuit, Hodge is considered to be one of the most unfortunate players in Australian cricket. He only made 46 appearances across all formats for his nation and had he not been playing cricket during 'Australia's golden generation', the story could have been very different for the classy batsman.
One of the most prolific run-getters in the Australian domestic circuit, Brad Hodge was a regular and consistent performer for his state and counties. Hodge debuted for Victoria in 1993-94 as an 18-year old, amassing almost a 1000 runs in his first season itself. A few dips followed after that but the turn of the millennium brought about a change in fortunes for him as well. Hodge consistently impressed in the one-day format and in the 2000-01 season, he finally crossed the 1000-run barrier as the Victorian Bushrangers marched to a second successive Pura Cup final. He repeated his amazing performances in the 2001-02 season as well which resulted in him sharing the domestic player of the season award with Queensland's Jimmy Maher.
His extremely high standards of performances were not noticed by the national team and he decided to continue his development in the United Kingdom. After a brief spell with Durham in 2002, Hodge joined Leicestershire where he spent two productive summers. He led Leicestershire to a domestic one-day trophy in 2004 before moving to Lancashire in 2005. Hodge was finally rewarded for his performances in 2004 with his first Cricket Australia contract. Hodge was considered for the tour of India that year as well, but Michael Clarke stepped up big time in the absence of some big names and Hodge again had to watch the show from the outside.
Hodge finally made his Test debut in late 2005 against West Indies at Hobart. He made a half ton in his first innings, giving a good account of himself immediately. His Test debut was followed by his ODI debut soon after. Hodge could not make a good enough impression in the initial phase of his ODI career but in just his third Test match, Hodge made an unbeaten double ton against South Africa at Perth. However, due to the stacked middle-order of Australia, boasting the likes of Ricky Ponting, Michael Hussey, Michael Clarke etc. at the peak of their powers, Hodge did not get a look-in and continued to be a backup plan. Hodge played what proved to be his penultimate Test in January 2006. After that, the next Test match that Brad played came in 2008 against the West Indies. No one could have imagined that a batsman possessing an average of 55.88 would only go on to play 6 Test matches throughout his career.
During 2007, Hodge did get opportunities in the ODI squad and there too he played very well. In the first 3 months of 2007, Hodge got two unbeaten scores of 90-plus against New Zealand. Hodge scored a ton as well against the Netherlands in the 2007 edition of the ICC World Cup. The Australians went on to lift the coveted trophy that year but Hodge did not play in the final. Hodge's last ODI appearance came against India at Mumbai in October 2007. Hodge was also dropped from the T20I squad in early 2008 and was recalled after a gap of almost 6 years to play against England. However, that run was also short-lived.
Hodge was tired of being on the fringes of the national Test team and in the 2009-10 season, Hodge said that he no longer had the drive to play in the longest format of the game and wanted to focus on the shorter formats. Hodge called it a day on his first-class career in the 2009-10 season. He also played his last List A game in December 2011 against Queensland. However, he continued to play in domestic leagues all around the world. He represented the likes of Adelaide Strikers and Melbourne Renegades in the Big Bash League and also played for Kolkata and Rajasthan in the Indian T20 League. Hodge will always be remembered as one of the most unfortunate players to play the game.