BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, Wednesday May 11, 2016 – Veteran cricket commentator, writer and journalist Tony Cozier has died at the age of 75 after a long illness.
He drew his last breath this morning at the privately-run Bayview Hospital in Barbados. Cozier had been battling cancer.
Tributes began pouring in for the Barbadian from at home, regionally and internationally, as the sad news of his passing spread.
Deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Tony Cozier today. One of the truly great voices of cricket. A huge loss for the cricket community
— ICC (@ICC) May 11, 2016
@Aggerscricket What sad news! I loved that soft Bajan accent and his general wisdom on cricketing matters. RIP
— Peter Bateman (@PeterBateman6) May 11, 2016
The best commentator on TV – Mike Coward on Tony Cozier https://t.co/dtYrBaJvC3
— ESPNcricinfo (@ESPNcricinfo) May 11, 2016
RIP Tony Cozier pic.twitter.com/5AQVKEF9PG
— Carlos Brathwaite (@TridentSportsX) May 11, 2016
Cricket has lost one of its most trusted and endearing voice…watching cricket from the WI will never be same again. R.I.P. Tony Cozier
— Aakash Chopra (@cricketaakash) May 11, 2016
Cozier began commentating and writing on West Indian cricket in 1958 and had become the respected voice of West Indies cricket.
Locally, he played cricket as an opening batsman and wicketkeeper for two clubs, Wanderers and Carlton.
— Jason Holder (@Jaseholder98) May 11, 2016
Several of those paying tribute have lamented that cricket is poorer for his passing.
Chief Executive Officer of the Caribbean Premier League (CPL), Damien O’Donohoe, said Cozier’s “love of cricket was a positive influence in telling the story across a golden era for West Indies cricket and he was hugely respected and loved, in equal measure, by fans of the game”.
“For more than 50 years Tony’s voice has resonated through television, radio or the written word in homes across the cricketing world and he was admired internationally for his passion, insight and enthusiasm,” he added.
“Most recently Tony was kind enough to share some of his hopes and thoughts on the forthcoming CPL in a way that was typically Tony…He spoke at length about his beloved Barbados, St. Kitts and Nevis and the soon to be published Jamaica. Though this series will now remain unfinished, like his legacy, they will live on and no doubt endure for all time.”
LISTEN TO THE FIRST TWO EDITIONS OF ‘COZIER’S CPL CHRONICLES’:
BBC cricket correspondent Jonathan Agnew described Cozier as the finest writers and broadcasters in the game.
“He was a wonderfully descriptive and disciplined commentator, his melodic Bajan accent the perfect soundtrack to any cricket match,” he said.
Cozier leaves to mourn his wife Jillian, and children Craig and Natalie.