Cape Town - Cricket South Africa (CSA) has
paid tribute to former SA captain Clive Rice, who passed away in hospital on
Rice died a mere five days after his 66th birthday after battling a brain tumour.
“Clive was our first captain (since isolation)
and we knew him to be a great fighter all his life. Even during his last few
years he put up a typically courageous and inspirational fight against the
illness that had threatened him for a lengthy period of time,” commented CSA
Chief Executive, Haroon Lorgat.
“Clive will always be remembered for
captaining the Proteas on our historic first tour to India in 1991 and, as one
of the great all-rounders and captains of the game, it was fitting that he got
the chance to play international cricket even though he was at an age when most
players might have called time on their careers.”
After his retirement from the game Rice
became the first director of CSA’s National Academy before he travelled
overseas to become Director of Cricket for Nottinghamshire County Cricket Club
where he previously had a stellar career as a player. As their captain he led
them to the county championship in 1981 for the first time since 1929 and
formed an internationally respected new ball partnership with Sir Richard
Hadlee of New Zealand.
Like many of the best South African players
of his era he was limited to a career of South African and England domestic
cricket although he also achieved success in an international all-rounder’s
competition in Hong Kong against some of the best in the world.
As captain of Transvaal’s ‘Mean Machine’ as
it became known he swept the board of all the major trophies available during
the 1980s before he finished his career with Natal. During his career he made
more than 39 000 runs in first-class and limited overs cricket and took more
than 1 500 wickets.
Sadly, his best playing days coincided
almost identically with South Africa’s isolation from international cricket. He
was selected for the cancelled tour to Australia in 1971-72 at the age of 22
and was 42 when he led his country to India on the ‘Friendship Tour”.
“On behalf of the CSA family I extend our
deepest condolences to his wife, his son and his daughter, all the rest of his
family, his friends and his many cricketing colleagues around the world”, said Lorgat.
CSA on Tuesday flew the flag at its offices
in Johannesburg at half-mast in tribute to Rice. As a mark of respect the
Proteas will wear black armbands in the Test match against Bangladesh starting