Former South African umpire Rudi Koertzen has passed away at age 73 after being involved in a car accident. He passed away on Monday from injuries received in the collision, a family representative told the AFP news agency.
Between 1992 and 2010, Koertzen served as an umpire in 108 Test matches. The South African team donned black armbands against the England Lions on Tuesday, and they’ll do it once more for the opening Test against England at Lord’s the following week.
Koertze officiated in 331 matches during his eight years on the International Cricket Council’s elite panel of umpires, a record that has since been exceeded by Pakistan’s Aleem Dar.
“It is a very big loss, foremost for his family and then for South Africa and cricket,” ESPNcricInfo cited a statement made by Dar.
“I stood in so many games with him. He was not only very good as an umpire but also an excellent colleague, always very cooperative on field and also always willing to help off the field. “Because of the way he was, he was also well-respected by players.”
The sport’s governing body, Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC), tweeted “MCC is deeply saddened to learn of the death of honorary life Member and former umpire, Rudi Koertzen. Our thoughts are with his friends and family.”
According to ESPNcricInfo, Koertzen passed away while traveling from Cape Town to Despatch in the Eastern Cape, where he lived with his family. In his hometown of Despatch in South Africa’s Eastern Cape, Koertzen continued to occasionally officiate amateur cricket games.
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