The former Indian allrounder MJ Gopalan died in Chennai on Sunday morning. Gopalan's death will now re-open the controversial chapter about his exact date of birth.
His school certificate had his date of birth as June 6,1909. The same is carried in all cricket publications the world over including Wisden Cricket Almanack and BCCI Statistical Annual.
However Gopalan's family members and he himself always maintained that he was born on June 6, 1906 and not on June 6, 1909. In that case, Gopalan's age at the time of death becomes 97 years 198 days and he becomes second oldest Test cricketer at the time of death.
94 or 97, Gopalan was the oldest surviving Test cricketer. This mantle has now been passed to Don Cleverley, who played two Tests for New Zealand.
Oldest Test cricketers at the time of death:
|Age||Player||For||M||Debut||Last Played||Date Died|
|98||324||FA Mackinnon||Eng||1||02 Jan 1879||04 Jan 1879||27 Feb 1947|
|95||252||W Rhodes||Eng||58||01 Jun 1899||12 Apr 1930||08 Jul 1973|
|95||151||GL Weir||NZ||11||24 Jan 1930||17 Aug 1937||31 Oct 2003|
|94||251||SF Barnes||Eng||27||13 Dec 1901||18 Feb 1914||26 Dec 1967|
|94||198||MJ Gopalan||Ind||1||06 Jun 1909||08 Jan 1934||21 Dec 2003|
|94||82||J Newman||NZ||3||27 Feb 1932||03 Apr 1933||23 Sep 1996|
Oldest Test cricketers still surviving: