Denis Lindsay, the former South African wicketkeeper-batsman who was an integral part of their legendary side in the late 1960s, has died in Johannesburg after a short illness. He was 66.
Lindsay's career high came against Australia in 1966-67, when he took 24 catches and hit 606 runs, the most by a keeper in any Test series. He started as he went on by scoring 69 and 182 to win the opening Test at Johannesburg, following that with 137 and 131 in the third and fourth Tests. Recalled against the same opponents in 1969-70, he scored 43 and 60 in a 323-run win at Port Elizabeth, South Africa's last match before their worldwide ban. He went on to become an effective ICC match referee, one not afraid to enforce the laws.
Of his performance in 1966-67, Wisden wrote: "Lindsay, came in and made what would have been the hundred of a lifetime for most mortals. The last of them in difficult conditions in Johannesburg in the fourth Test occupied only 105 minutes and then as before he let loose a flood of thrilling strokes without ever seeming to use other than the middle of the bat. In the series he made 606 runs at an average of 86.57 and yet in subsequent seasons in the Currie Cup he scarcely made a run."
Ali Bacher, who played with Lindsay and captained him in 1969-70, told the SA Press Association: "Denis was diagnosed with cancer of the bladder earlier this year and it spread. He fought the illness with the same courage that he displayed on the cricket field. He was a great team man."
Ehsan Mani, the ICC president, said he was "deeply shocked and saddened to hear this news. He gave the game of cricket a lifetime of service both as a player and an administrator. People like Denis, who entertain as players and then give something back to the game after they finish playing, are the lifeblood of our sport. They keep cricket strong and his contribution in that regard cannot be understated. He was immensely popular among those that dealt with him, with a great sense of humour, and he will be sorely missed."
Lindsay played in 19 Tests altogether, scoring 1130 runs at 37.66 and making 59 dismissals. In all first-class cricket he scored 7074 runs with a career best of 216, and he had a hand in 333 dismissals (292 catches, 41 stumpings).
His father, Johnny, who was also a wicketkeeper, played three Tests against England in 1947.