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September 25, 2008
A police spokesman said they were alerted at 4.45am on Wednesday (September 24) by a security guard who found van Nierop at the base of a wall, adding it was believed he tried to jump off the wall and fell, striking his head. He died at the scene and foul play was not suspected, although the post mortem has yet to be carried out.
Born in Cape Town, van Nierop was spotted as a promising talent at an early age, and that was underlined when he became the first player from the Netherlands to be taken onto the MCC groundstaff as one of their Young Cricketers in 2001.
A top-order batsman, he played for various national age groups, captaining the Under-23s. He made his first-class debut for Netherlands in 2004, scoring 38 and 41 against Ireland in the Intercontinental Cup, going on to play in a further three games between then and 2006. He also made two ODI appearances in 2006-07.
His selection was restricted because he had moved back to South Africa in 2006 where he had continued to play club cricket. He was only last week named in Netherlands' winter training squad. "He was quite motivated to make his way back [into the Dutch team]," a friend said.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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