Fred Trueman 1931-2006 July 1, 2006

'He was 100% Yorkshire and England'

Cricinfo staff

Len Hutton and Fred Trueman head to the nets at Headingley at the start of the 1955 season © The Cricketer
Brian Close, who played alongside Fred Trueman for Yorkshire and England, led the tributes following the news of Trueman's death in a Yorkshire hospital at the age of 75.

"I played with him from the age of 16 and he was one of the great fast bowlers of all time," Close said. "He was a super character, great fun in the dressing room and was a great entertainer. He had a fabulous memory, we could go back 50 years and he'd remember what happened. He was 100% Yorkshire and England. Never gave up trying.Yorkshire cricket and cricket as a whole has lost a great character."

Ray Illingworth, the former England and Yorkshire captain, said: "You hear a lot about how good certain fast bowlers have been but this fellow was really the best, there is absolutely no doubt about that.

"He was a great character but with a bit of fun about him and he was never nasty. He was well known for his comments about other players but there was never any malice in what he said and we shall never see the likes of him again. We played for 20 years together from being no more than boys in 1948 and I have lost a great friend and colleague".

He was a funny man, an amusing man, he just made you laugh © The Cricketer
Geoffrey Boycott remembered: "I'd like to have seen him president of Yorkshire. Sadly that didn't happen. There are very few people in life that you can call by their Christian name and everyone knows who they mean. He was a funny man, an amusing man, he just made you laugh. He was a great cricketer, which is often-misused.

"He had the most classical action of all time. He was absolutely perfect, technically side-on. He swung the ball away at great pace. That takes some doing. A great bowler at the tailenders. He had this fantastic yorker as well and he had this strong physique that hardly ever broke down."

Trueman's team-mate Phil Sharpe said: "Fred was one of the all time great fast bowlers and he was a wonderful character in the dressing room and outside of it. He will be very sadly missed".

Geoff Cope, another former team-mate, added: "Not only have we lost an institution of the game we have lost a knowledge that was so valuable to the game of cricket, on a personal front as a youngster he helped me greatly when I first came into the Yorkshire side, he will never be forgotten".

Some Australian players who played against Trueman also paid tribute. Bob Simpson said: "He'll be remembered as one of the greats of all time. He was the first to get 300 wickets in Test cricket - and in the days when not a lot of Test cricket was played, that was a marvellous achievement. He was a wonderful swing bowler.

"He was a chap who retained his good humour whatever the circumstances. We were good mates even though we battled against each other for a long time. He always felt he could get you out with any ball. He never resented anything. He might have made the odd comment but it was never sledging as we know it."

Keith Stackpole added: "He was just a great character and a great friend."