Eric Petrie, the former New Zealand wicketkeeper, has died at Omokoroa in the Bay of Plenty. He was 77. Petrie played 14 Tests between 1955-56 and 1965-66, and had a modest batting average of 12.90. He took 25 catches behind the stumps
Petrie was one of the few successes of New Zealand's 1958 tour of England, when only heavy rain in the final Test at The Oval prevented a 5-0 whitewash. But Petrie, unusually for a touring player, was selected for the Gentlemen against the Players in the traditional annual match at Lord's that year.
One of the high points of his career was in the first match of what turned out to be his final series, at home to England in 1965-66, when he made his only Test fifty. His patient 55, off 178 balls, and a crucial eighth-wicket partnerhip of 89 with Dick Motz, helped New Zealand gain a narrow first-innings lead.