Hereford & Worcester

Damian D'Oliveira: Former Worcestershire batsman dies

Media captionThe club says Damian D'Oliveira was responsible for the discovery of many of their current squad

Former Worcestershire batsman and academy manager Damian D'Oliveira has died from cancer.

The 53-year-old, son of the late Worcestershire and England legend Basil D'Oliveira, played for the county between 1982 and 1995.

During his career he scored more than 9,000 first-class runs, with a career-best single innings of 237.

He also discovered many of the county's current first-team squad, which includes his son Brett.

'Absolutely overwhelming'

The club said the players were informed of the news of his death shortly before the start of Sunday's County Championship match with Glamorgan.

In a statement, the club said: "Worcestershire are sad to report that academy director Damian D'Oliveira passed away in the early hours of this morning.

"D'Oliveira has bravely been battling cancer for the past two-and-a-half years."

Mr D'Oliveira's father, who was fondly known as Dolly, was born in South Africa and moved to the UK in the 1960s because of the lack of opportunities for non-white players.

He went on to play for England but his selection for the 1968 tour of South Africa led to a political storm, the cancellation of the tour and sporting isolation for his former country.

In 2011, Mr D'Oliveira told the BBC the reaction to his father's death had been "absolutely overwhelming".

"He was a man of very few words who did his talking on the field," he said.

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