Basil D'Oliveira: Buy-a-brick plea to honour cricket legend

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Basil D'Oliveira played for Worcestershire between 1964 and 1980

Cricket fans can take part in creating a memorial for Worcestershire legend Basil D'Oliveira - by buying a brick for a pavilion in his name.

The South African club where the cricketer learned to play is honouring its famous son with the new building.

People are being invited to buy a brick for £40. These will be used to form a silhouette of him inside the pavilion.

"It's the chance to honour one of our greatest ever players," said Worcestershire superfan Mark Ashbourne.

D'Oliveira, known affectionately as Dolly, grew up in Cape Town and began playing at St Augustine's Cricket Club as a child.

He moved to England in 1960 because of the lack of opportunities for non-white players during South Africa's Apartheid regime.

He played county cricket for Worcestershire from 1964-80 and represented England in 44 Tests, scoring 2,484 runs at an average of 40.

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Image caption,
D'Oliveira, fondly known as Dolly, represented England in 44 Test matches

In 1968 he was named in England's squad to play in South Africa, but when the ruling National Party refused to accept a "Cape coloured", the tour was called off.

This culminated in a ban on sporting ties with South Africa which would last until the early 1990s.

Mr Ashbourne, a lifelong supporter of Worcestershire Cricket Club, is spearheading the UK fans' contributions to the Cape Town club building.

He flew out to South Africa and met officials, offering his services to help fundraise for the pavilion.

It will cost 1.2m ZAR (£63,000) to build, and 900,000 ZAR has already been secured, he said.

Image source, St Augustine's
Image caption,
It is hoped the pavilion will become a major part of the community

"We thought the people of Worcestershire would really like to get involved with the brick project," said Mr Ashbourne.

The bricks, which can be inscribed with names or a message, will form a silhouette of D'Oliveira in the community room of the building.

To buy a brick, email Mr Ashbourne at

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