New Zealand cricket legend Martin Crowe has died

Martin CroweNew Zealand’s greatest test batsman Martin Crowe has died.┬áMartin Crowe passed away after a prolonged battle with cancer that eventually proved one attack the gifted cricketer couldn’t see off.

Crowe is survived by wife Lorraine Downes, daughter Emma and step-children Hilton and Jasmine. He was 53.

A statement released by his family, and headed “God Speed, Rest in Peace”, said: “It is with heavy hearts that the family of Martin Crowe, MBE advise his death.”

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

One of the finest athletes this country has ever produced, Crowe made a considerable mark both on and off the pitch during a life spent in sport.

Crowe’s 14 years spent wearing the silver fern saw the world’s best bowling attacks dispatched to all-corners by a batsman blessed with a wide array of strokes.

In 1991 his abundant ability saw him named New Zealand sportsman of the year and awarded an MBE for services to cricket. Crowe was inducted into the New Zealand sports hall of fame a decade later, having continued a love affair with cricket that extended long beyond his premature retirement.

Crowe captained his country from 1990-1993, mixing his prodigious style at the crease with a number of innovations, including opening the bowling with spinners, implementing unexpected field placements and utilising pinch-hitting batsmen.

Born on September 22, 1962, in Henderson, Auckland, Crowe’s father was former domestic cricketer Dave, while brother Jeff also went on to captain the New Zealand cricket side. The siblings were cousins of Hollywood actor Russell.

A stylish batsman, Crowe made his test debut in 1982 at the tender age of 19, batting at No 6 against Australia and experiencing the rare distinction of being run out in his maiden innings. (Courtesy The New Zealand Herald)

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