• New Zealand lose a great

    New Zealand cricket legend Martin Crowe has passed away at the age of 53 after losing his battle with lymphoma.

    The former Black Caps captain was diagnosed with follicular lymphoma in October 2012 and underwent treatment for the cancer but it returned in September 2014.

    ‘It is with heavy hearts that the family of Martin Crowe, MBE, advise his death,’ his family said in a statement.

    ‘Diagnosed in September 2014 with terminal double hit lymphoma he passed away peacefully today, Thursday 3rd March in Auckland surrounded by family.┬áThe family request privacy at this time.’

    Crowe, one of the finest batsmen of his generation, played 77 Tests and 143 one-day internationals for New Zealand, scoring 5 444 Test runs including 17 centuries.

    Last year he became the 79th inductee into the International Cricket Council Hall of Fame, the third Kiwi to receive the honour after Sir Richard Hadlee and Debbie Hockley, receiving the honour at the Cricket World Cup pool match between New Zealand and Australia at Eden Park.

    Crowe is survived by wife Lorraine Downes, daughter Emma and step-children Hilton and Jasmine.

    Born in Henderson, New Zealand, Crowe made his debut for New Zealand in 1982 aged 19 and went on to make a considerable mark both on and off the pitch as a cricketer, commentator and author.

    His 14-year international career included a vast array of highlights, both as a stylish batsman and during his four-year stint as national captain from 1990-1993, where he built a reputation as an innovative and daring leader.

    Crowe was named Wisden Cricketer of the Year in 1985 and New Zealand sportsman of the year in 1991.

    He held the record for highest Test score by a New Zealander until February 2014, his 299 against Sri Lanka at the Basin Reserve in 1991 only trumped by recently retired captain Brendon McCullum’s 302 at the same venue.

    Crowe captained New Zealand to a World Cup semi-final in 1992 and was named the best player of the tournament for his century and four fifties.

    When he retired aged 33, Crowe was the Black Caps’ most prolific run-scorer, with an average of 45.36.┬áHis 17 Test tons remain the most by a New Zealand player.

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    SA CRICKET