WELLINGTON • New Zealand great John R Reid, who led the nascent cricketing nation to their first Test victory in 1956, has died aged 92, officials said yesterday, hailing him as a “colossus”.
Reid, who was New Zealand’s oldest surviving Test cricketer and one of the best all-rounders of his day, captained the Black Caps in 34 Tests including their maiden win, against the West Indies.
The victory in Auckland ended a 26-year winless streak for New Zealand, who are now second in the Test rankings and were narrowly beaten finalists at last year’s ODI World Cup in England.
“Reid was New Zealand cric- ket’s Colin Meads,” said New Zea- land Cricket CEO David White, referring to the legendary All Blacks lock.
“He was, and will remain, a household name in this country, having helped pave the way for everything that has come in his wake.”
Reid, a hard-hitting batsman and a brisk seam bowler, also led New Zealand to their second and third Test wins during the drawn series in South Africa in 1961-1962.
After making his debut aged 19 on the 1949 tour of England, Reid played 58 Tests, scoring 3,428 runs at an average of 33.28, while taking 85 wickets at 33.35. His top score was 142 against South Africa in 1961.
No cause of death was announced. Reid, who was also a New Zealand selector and an International Cricket Council match referee, is survived by his wife, three children and four grandchildren. — AFP