Stephen Rodger Waugh, AO (born 2 June 1965) is a former Australian international cricketer and twin brother of cricketer Mark Waugh. A right-handed batsman, he was also a medium-pace bowler. In December 2017 his son Austin Waugh was named in Australia’s squad for the 2018 Under-19 Cricket World Cup.
Born in New South Wales, with whom he began his first class cricket career in 1984, he captained the Australian Test cricket team from 1999 to 2004, and was the most capped Test cricket player in history, with 168 appearances, until Sachin Tendulkar of India broke this record in 2010. Thought of in the early stages of his career as only a "moderately talented" player, at one point losing his Test place to his brother Mark, he went on to become one of the leading batsmen of his time. He is one of only twelve players to have scored more than 10,000 Test runs. As captain, he led Australia to fifteen of their record sixteen consecutive Test wins, and to victory in the 1999 Cricket World Cup.
Waugh has been included in a list of one hundred Australian Living Treasures by the National Trust of Australia, awarded the Order of Australia and the Australian Sports Medal. Known as an attacking and sometimes ruthlessly efficient captain, Waugh rebuffed criticism over "manipulation of the points system" during the Cricket World Cup to ensure his team's progression, and was often critical of the media. Described in 2003 as a "cold-blooded, scientific" leader, cricket columnist of The Times Simon Barnes noted that "Waugh wants to defeat you personally." At the end of his final Test match, Waugh was carried by his teammates in a lap of honour around the Sydney Cricket Ground.
Born at Canterbury Hospital in Campsie, a suburb in South-Western Sydney on 2 June 1965, Waugh was one of twin boys born to Rodger and Beverley Waugh. He arrived four minutes before Mark, who went on to play cricket for Australia alongside him. Their father was a bank official and his mother was a teacher within the New South Wales Department of Education. The family settled in the South-Western Sydney suburb of Panania. The twins were later joined by two more brothers, Dean (who also went on to play first-class cricket in Australia) and Danny. From an early age, the parents introduced their children to sport. By the age of six, the twins were playing organised soccer, tennis and cricket. In their first cricket match, the brothers were both dismissed for ducks.
The twins came from a sporting family. Their paternal grandfather Edward was a greyhound trainer. Raised in the North Coast town of Bangalow, Edward earned selection for the New South Wales Country team in rugby league. He was about to join Eastern Suburbs in the New South Wales Rugby League, but had to give up his career due to family reasons. Rodger was Edward's only son and was promising tennis player, who was ranked eighth in Australia in his junior years and was the state champion at under-14 level. On the maternal side, Bev was a tennis player who won the under-14 singles at the South Australian Championships. Her eldest brother Dion Bourne was an opening batsman who played for Bankstown in Sydney Grade Cricket and remains the leading runscorer in the club's history.
The twins made their first representative cricket team when they were selected for the Bankstown District under-10s at the age of eight. In 1976, the twins were the youngest ever to be selected in the New South Wales Primary Schools' soccer team. Playing for Panania Primary School, the twins swept their school to win the Umbro International Shield, a statewide knockout soccer competition, scoring all of their team's three goals in the final. They were a key part of their school's consecutive state cricket championships, and were part of the school tennis team that came second in the state in their final year. In his final year, Steve was the vice-captain of the cricket team and captained the state soccer team. The twins were instrumental in New South Wales winning the cricket carnival without a defeat, in one match combining in a partnership of 150.