‘Rods out for Roy’ as tributes continue to flow for Andrew Symonds


Tributes continued to flow for Andrew Symonds, with a ‘Fishing Rods for Roy’ campaign launched to honour the former Australia star.

Cricket fans have been encouraged to leave fishing rods and cricket balls outside the front of their house as part of a nation-wide tribute for the 46-year-old.

His love of fishing was the stuff of folklore, with Symonds even sent home from an ODI series against Bangladesh in 2008 after missing a team meeting in Darwin so he could hit the water.

Symonds had even been willing to accept a 20 percent pay cut from his Cricket Australia contract if it meant he would be granted more free time to go fishing.

Symonds was travelling with his two dogs, and they reportedly didn’t want to leave his side after the crash.

Former team-mates and rivals alike paid tribute to Symonds once the news of his death was made public.

Adam Gilchrist choked back tears when paying tribute to Symonds on Monday morning during his SEN radio show. Justin Langer, who played alongside Symonds in the Test team, joined Gilchrist and former coach Darren Lehmann to reminisce about their good friend.

“When I was 25, I went back to the Cricket Academy with Rod Marsh as a scholarship coach, and he [Symonds] was one of the guys I coached,” Langer said. “On every Wednesday night, there was some nightclub or some bar the boys would go to, and Rod Marsh would say, ‘righto boys, who went out last night?’

“And every single Thursday morning two blokes put their hands up, Andrew Symonds and Ian Harvey. And Rod Marsh would say, ‘Righto, you’re over there with Alfie’. And I had to take them…so they could sweat out these Bundies from the night before.

“To this moment the perfume of Bundaberg Rum makes me gag, because I used to have to take these guys and I smelt Bundy every Thursday morning for about seven months.”

Lehmann said he was struggling to process the loss of Shane Warne, Rod Marsh, and Symonds in such a short space of time.

“It’s been a tough time,” Lehmann said. “He [Symonds] was one of the first guys I coached. To lose a larger than life character is quite distressing for everyone, none more so than for his family. He was a legend of the game, we loved him very much, he lit up the room, and loved life to the fullest.”

Another former Australia coach – John Buchanan – said he saw Symonds as a leader despite his larrikin behaviour.

“Roy was never perfect, that was for sure, and he never admitted that he was,” Buchanan told the ABC. “You know, he made poor decisions, like all of us do, at different stages of his life and different stages in his cricket career.

“But the one thing about Roy — and one of the things that I think endeared him to most people — was that even though he made a mistake, he would openly admit that and try to rectify that and take full accountability for that.

“And so when he saw other people that were probably treading the same path, he was certainly one of the first people to come forward and try to put them on the right direction. I always saw him as a leader in our team without a title.”


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