It is with great sadness that the International Cricket Council (ICC) learned of the passing of a true great of the game, former South Africa all-rounder Clive Rice, after a long illness at the age of 66.
Over a first-class career spanning 25 years, Rice scored 26,331 runs in 482 matches, including a highest score of 246. A hugely respected fast-medium bowler, he claimed 930 wickets at an average of 22.49 in a career where he also represented Nottinghamshire, Transvaal, Natal and Scotland with distinction.
A destructive batsman and feared fast bowler, he was a key part of Transvaal’s famed ‘Mean Machine’ in the 1970’s and 80’s during which time he led Transvaal to three Currie Cup titles. It was there, and with Nottinghamshire, where he led them to the County Championship in 1981 and 1987, that he forged his reputation as a leading all-rounder.
In 1981 he was named as the Wisden Cricketer of the Year.
Speaking on Tuesday, ICC Chief Executive and former South Africa international David Richardson commented: “Clive Rice was a giant of the game, not just in South Africa, but across the cricketing world. Though his international appearances for the Proteas were limited to just three ODIs, Clive was a hugely inspirational figure for those of us who had the privilege to represent our country since readmission to international cricket in 1991, and it was fitting that Clive was named as captain of the national team on that historic first tour to India.
“Clive was hugely regarded across the world game as a player, but later as a coach and mentor where he inspired the likes of Lance Klusener, Shaun Pollock and Jonty Rhodes, and he will be greatly missed by those who knew him. On behalf of the ICC I would like to extend our condolences to his wife Sue and children at this difficult time.”