Cape Town, July 28: Former South Africa cricket captain Clive Rice passed away on Tuesday morning (July 28) at a hospital, local media reported.
According to "Sport24", 66-year-old Rice was suffering from a brain tumour in recent times and was taking treatment for the same. However, he lost his battle on Tuesday, the website reported.
Rice had visited India in March this year for CyberKnife robotic radio surgery at a Bengaluru hospital. After the surgery, he had told "The Hindu", "Can't doesn't exist, the word 'can' does. And if you've got to sell your BMW to come here and do the treatment, then do it."
"They were brilliant. I had three treatments which were an hour long. I was tied down onto a table and this cyber-knife machine was floating around, and then specifically targeting that cancer cell in my brain, and radiating it to take it out.
"From being in a state where they told you you're basically going to die... well that's what we're all going to do, but I'm not in a hurry to die... (but) through this treatment we managed to sort it out.
"You can't believe how professional they were, and the team of doctors that I had that were doing it, every day now you wake up and you just feel better and better. I was very happy with what happened. In fact, it's a miracle," Rice had told "Sport24" about the treatment in Bengaluru.
Rice, at 42 years, was South Africa's captain on their first tour to India in 1991, post return to international cricket from sporting isolation due to Apartheid. He played 3 One Day Internationals.
In his first-class career, which saw him play 482 matches, Rice scored over 25,000 runs and took 930 wickets.
Former South African all-rounder Pat Symcox said he was "devastated" to hear the news of Rice's passing away.
"Devastated...a great friend and wonderful man...Clive Rice has passed away. The world is a poorer place...," Symcox tweeted.
Devastated...a great friend and wonderful man...Clive Rice has passed away. The world is a poorer place...— Pat Symcox (@PatSymcox77) July 28, 2015
Watched cricket with my dad when Clive Rice was at his peak. Good memories. #RIPCliveRice— Juanita Williams (@juanitaw) July 28, 2015
Statement from International Cricket Council (ICC)
"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. When South Africa was readmitted to international cricket in 1991, it was fitting that Clive was named as captain.
"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."