Mike Procter was perhaps one of the most naturally gifted all-rounders the game of cricket has ever seen.
Procter was denied the chance to showcase his talents on the international stage by South Africa’s isolation. His performances in the seven Test matches he did play – all against Australia – suggest he would have been right up there with the very best all-rounders like Ian Botham, Imran Khan, Kapil Dev and Richard Hadlee.
He took 41 wickets in seven Tests an an average of 15.02 before his career, along with a string of other greats, ended in 1970.
He played county cricket for 13 years as an overseas player for Gloucestershire and led them to great success. Fans even jokingly renamed the team Proctershire.
He scored six centuries in consecutive first-class innings while playing for Rhodesia in the early 1970s, and went on to coach South Africa after re-admission.
He later became a member of the ICC’s elite panel of match referees which was marred by controversy. He was the referee at The Oval in 2006 when Pakistan forfeited the Test and again in Sydney in 2007-08 when he banned Harbhajan Singh.
He stood down from the position in 2008 in order to take up a new role as South Africa’s convener of selectors.