South Africa news December 6, 2013

Cricket world pays tribute to Mandela

ESPNcricinfo staff

The cricketing world has united to pay tribute to Nelson Mandela, who died in Johannesburg on Thursday night. A minute's silence was observed in Adelaide and Dunedin, where Australia, England, New Zealand and West Indies are playing Tests and statements poured in from across the globe.

In South Africa, the home team are currently hosting India on a month-long tour - the first match was on Thursday - but Mandela's death is unlikely to affect the scheduling of the series. Cricket South Africa announced that it had decided to dedicate the series to Mandela as a tribute.

CSA initially posted their tribute on Twitter, before Chris Nenzani, the CSA president, released a statement praising Mandela for bringing hope, stability and progress to South Africa. "The sporting world will remember him for his tireless efforts at uniting the various sporting codes in order to create a proud and united South African sporting front," he said.

Graeme Smith, South Africa's Test captain, said he felt privileged to have been able to spend time with Mandela. "As the captain I was very privileged to spend some time with him and I vividly recall telephone calls I received from him wishing us luck before a big match or event," Smith said. "He always gave simple but wise advice and this had a big impact on me as leader of the team."

South Africa's ODI captain, AB de Villiers, said Mandela's personal interest in the players was motivational: "We often felt, especially in my early days in the Proteas, that Madiba showed a personal interest in the team and in us as individual players. This motivated us to be better." (For more reactions click here.)

In Adelaide, meanwhile, the England and Australia teams, along with the crowd, observed a minute's silence before play resumed on the second day while both teams were also wearing black armbands. Across the Tasman, in Dunedin, the ground paused for a minute before the afternoon session began.

During his time as South Africa President, Mandela met with many of the teams who toured South Africa. In 1995 in Soweto he was introduced to Devon Malcolm, the England fast bowler, and said "I know you. You are the destroyer," in relation to Malcolm's performance at The Oval the previous year.

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  • Android on December 7, 2013, 10:52 GMT

    he is a legend

  • Dummy4 on December 7, 2013, 9:12 GMT

    RIP to Great MR. Mendela Salute

  • Balaji on December 7, 2013, 5:39 GMT

    You sir, now belong to eternity. I remember years back people standing in a Railway station in India asking others to sign a petition for your release. I signed that petition. I was one of many millions who must have signed. Somewhere I felt satisfied when you were released. I never saw you except on TV, the lasting image in my mind was one of a younger Mandela in a black and white photograph, sporting a beard. As much as I felt satisfied when you were released, I felt sorrow at your passing. Goodbye sir, yours was a life well lived, and deserves to be celebrated.

  • Shabir on December 6, 2013, 16:06 GMT

    President should be like him not like others president who just keep eyes on their chair.Nelson Mandela brings stability credibility in south africa.He will be rememberer forever and in the cricket arena of south africa.It is because of him we are seeing the greatest allrounder in cricket Jacques Kallis,fastest and fiersome dale steyn,atheltic and initivite Ab,as solid as amla today in cricket,as well as as smith pollock donald gibbs

  • Dummy4 on December 6, 2013, 15:04 GMT

    He has gone in pursuit of the birds of the sea. Uhambe kakuhle Madiba, and best wishes to his family that today is much larger than even the good people of Qunu.

  • Dummy4 on December 6, 2013, 14:59 GMT

    Mandela was an honest man, a man of compassion, a man of vision and a man who listened to people, even his enemies.

  • Dummy4 on December 6, 2013, 14:44 GMT

    Rest in Peace Sir.we all salute you

  • Maaz on December 6, 2013, 14:44 GMT

    A great man.True Legend and loving for his country.Respect from Pakistan

  • mudit on December 6, 2013, 14:04 GMT

    Rest in peace, Dear Sir. Your life was an inspiration to people around the world. In our school books we used to read about Gandhi but could never see him in person so he was an abstract idea in so many ways. You however were someone I could watch live even though on a TV and be inspired from.

  • Croos on December 6, 2013, 12:08 GMT

    RIP to Mr.Mendela the world miss a great man!!!!

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