By Mike Canavan
World cricket is in shock following the death of Australian cricket great Dean Jones.
There was a certain electricity whenever Jones went to the crease. He was an individual who played with passion and gritty determination.
Jones was part of Indian television’s Star Sports commentary team working on the IPL from a hotel in Mumbai.
It’s understood Jones collapsed in his hotel room, aged 59.
Former star Brett Lee was on the scene and performed CPR on the Jones but was unable to save his life.
Indian media is reporting he suffered a major heart attack.
“Dean Jones was one of the great ambassadors of the game associating himself with Cricket development across South Asia. He was passionate about discovering new talent and nurturing young cricketers”.
“He was a champion commentator whose presence and presentation of the game always brought joy to millions of fans. He will be sorely missed by everyone at Star and his millions of fans across the globe.”
Cricket Australia also paid tribute.
“Dean Jones was a hero to a generation of cricketers and will forever be remembered as a legend of this great game,” CA chair Earl Eddings said.
“This is a truly sad day. Deano’s loss will be felt not just at home in Australia, but across the globe.
“Although many remember him for his brilliance in the 50-over game, arguably Jones’ finest moment in the national team came in scorching conditions in Chennai in 1986, where his selfless and courageous innings of 210 helped Australia to a famous tie against India.
“Jones remained an immensely popular figure in Australian and Victorian cricket throughout his life and was a much-loved columnist and commentator in every corner of the cricketing world.
“This is a truly sad day. Deano’s loss will be felt not just at home in Australia, but across the globe. Our thoughts and best wishes are with his wife Jane and daughters Isabella and Phoebe.”
Jones played 52 Tests for Australia between 1984 and 1992 before becoming a respected commentator.
The Victorian was one of Australia’s most popular cricketers and revolutionised the one-day format.
Perhaps his most famous innings was a stunning double century he made in India in excruciatingly hot conditions, when he defied extreme physical illness to stay out in the middle.
Jones has also been a household voice in television and radio commentary over the past decade and was a respected cricket coach in Pakistan.
Tributes began pouring in for the cricket great.