Former England all-rounder Trevor Bailey died in a house fire on Thursday, the England and Wales Cricket Board said.
Bailey, 87, played 61 Tests during a 10-year international career.
Known as "barnacle" for his resilience at the crease, he enjoyed a 21-year career with Essex before becoming a successful cricket writer and broadcaster.
His most famous innings was in the Lord's Test against Australia in 1953. He batted four-and-a-half hours with Willie Watson in a last day stand and staved off defeat, enabling England retain the Ashes after 19 years.
BBC cricket correspondent Jonathan Agnew, in a post on Twitter, said: "Desperate news re. Trevor Bailey. Dogged batsman, aggressive bowler. Intelligent cricketer. Wonderfully concise pundit. Great sense of humour."
A statement from ECB chairman Giles Clarke read: "Trevor Bailey was not only one of the finest all-round cricketers this country has ever produced, he was also someone who made an enormous contribution to the game as an administrator and as a writer and broadcaster.
"His loss will be deeply felt by everyone within the cricket community and we send our sympathies to his family and many friends within the game."
ECB chief executive David Collier paid tribute to Bailey's work as a pillar of BBC Radio's Test Match Special.
"Everyone who met Trevor could not fail to be impressed by his deep love and knowledge of cricket," Collier said.
"It was a passion that he was able to communicate to millions via radio as a member of the Test Match Special commentary team and there will be very many cricket supporters in this country who will be mourning his loss in such tragic circumstances."