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ICC, BCCI pay rich tribute to Richie Benaud

Last updated on: April 10, 2015 19:15 IST
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Richie BenaudThe International Cricket Council paid rich tribute to former Australia captain and broadcasting legend Richie Benaud, who passed away at the age of 84 following a prolonged illness.

ICC Chief Executive David Richardson said: "Today is a very sad day for cricket as it mourns the passing of one of its most beloved sons. On behalf of the ICC, I offer my deepest condolences to the family and friends of Richie Benaud as well as everyone connected with Australia cricket.

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"Richie was a true legend, charismatic but always the perfect sportsman and gentleman. He was also one of the most complete sportsmen who dedicated his life to cricket.

"During his playing days, he was an outstanding all-rounder and inspirational captain. Following retirement, he turned journalist and broadcaster, and through his cricket intellect, knowledge and articulate presentation, became the voice of cricket."

Richardson added: "Richie was always engaging and knowledgeable about the game and although he may have been Australian by birth, he had a great passion for world cricket. The esteem in which he was held was reflected by his induction into the ICC Hall of Fame in 2009. Cricket will miss Richie Benaud but will remember him with fond memories."

Benaud enjoyed a stellar international career and took 248 wickets and scored 2,201 runs in 63 Tests. He captained Australia in 28 Tests, winning 12 and losing four.

In a first-class career, which spanned 16 years, the leg-spinning all-rounder scored 11,719 runs and took 945 wickets in 259 matches.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India also extended its condolences to the family and friends of Benaud, saying he was "one of the greatest leg-spinners and an astute captain to have led Australia", and someone who carried himself with "grace and dignity".

"Renowned as one of the greatest leg-spinners and an astute captain to have led Australia, Richie Benaud was a fine example of a highly competitive sportsman who carried himself with dignity and grace, on and off the field," read a statement from BCCI secretary Anurag Thakur.

"Indian cricket remembers his exploits on Australia’s first tour of India in 1956-57, which was dominated by spinners, and Richie Benaud emerged as a clear winner, claiming 23 wickets in three Tests.

"He continued his mesmerising spells on the tour to India in 1959-60, leaving an indelible impression of his abilities in the land of spin bowling," the statement added.

Thakur also spoke about his stint as media pundit which earned him plaudits all across the globe.

"Post retirement, he brought forth the nuances of the game to fans across the world, as a columnist and broadcaster, whose opinions were highly regarded."

"This is a big loss to all the fans of the game across the world and Australia in particular, and on behalf of the BCCI and the Indian cricketing fraternity, I pray to God to rest his soul in peace."


Image: Richie Benaud looks on during the Cricket Australia State Cricket Awards at Bellerive Oval on March 15, 2011 in Hobart, Australia.

Photograph: Scott Barbour/Getty Images

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