England ex-captain Brian Close passes away

London, Sep 14 (IANS) Former England captain Brian Close has died at the age of 84, the English and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) said in a statement on Monday.

Close became the youngest player ever to win a Test cap for England when he made his debut against New Zealand in 1949 as an 18-year-old.

The left-handed batsman went on to lead his country seven times in 22 Tests, and also captained his native county Yorkshire to four County Championship titles.

Also an off-spinner, Close made almost 35,000 first-class runs in a career which spanned over three decades from his breakthrough debut season in 1949 to a final appearance in 1986.

A statement on Yorkshire’s website on Monday confirmed Close’s death the previous day.

“It is with the deepest regret that Yorkshire County Cricket Club announce the death of Brian Close, CBE, one of Yorkshire and England’s greatest-ever captains and one of the game’s most courageous players,” it read.

Close was part of the famed Yorkshire team of the ’60s which also featured England greats such as Geoffrey Boycott, Ray Illingworth and Fred Trueman.

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