BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, Thursday May 12, 2016 – The regional cricketing and sporting fraternity continues to reflect on the life and contribution of renowned cricket commentator and journalist Tony Cozier, who died in hospital in his native Barbados yesterday at the age of 75.
The West Indies Cricket Board (WICB), the West Indies Players’ Association (WIPA) and the Caribbean Sports Journalists’ Association (CASJA) have all joined in mourning his passing, which came after a prolonged illness.
The WICB said that Cozier, who was the voice of West Indies cricket, covering the game for more than 50 years, made a lasting contribution to the game.
“He ensured that West Indies cricket fans all around the world received information and knowledge about their beloved team and their favourite players. His life was dedicated to the game in the Caribbean and we salute him for his outstanding work,” the Board said in a statement.
“He was not just a great journalist, but also a great ambassador. He represented West Indies wherever he went. He educated people around the world about our cricket, our people, our culture and who we are. His voice was strong and echoed around the cricket world. He enjoyed West Indies victories and shared the pain when we lost. He gave a lifetime of dedicated service and will be remembered by all who came into contact with him.”
The players also remembered Cozier as a pioneer in his field.
And CASJA said he made an invaluable contribution to the Caribbean media, especially to the game of cricket.
“Tony brought Caribbean identity among a list of elite cricket voices including Christopher Martin-Jenkins, Henry Blofeld, John Arlott, Joseph “Reds” Perreira, Bryan Waddle, Fred Trueman, Jim Maxwell, Geoffrey Boycott and Jonathan Agnew, to name a few,” CASJA president Michael Bascombe said.
Meantime, the Caribbean Broadcasting Union (CBU) also paid tribute to Cozier, a CBU Hall of Famer.
Colleague and chairman of the CBU Hall of Fame Selection Panel, Jones P. Madeira, remembered his pivotal role in coverage of cricket for the region.
“I remember the early days of sending him out as a CBU ambassador, with fellow commentator “Reds” Pereira to cover cricket, despite the challenges in getting him onto the broadcast teams outside of the Caribbean. His commentary always made the difference, and he became one of the world’s best,” Madeira said of Cozier, who was inducted into the CBU Hall of Fame in 1997.
Cozier became the “unmistakable voice of West Indies cricket” and was regarded by many as the world’s preeminent cricket broadcaster, the CBU added.