Sir Richard Hadlee has expressed his shock at the sudden passing of former Australian cricketer Dean Jones, who he described as a good friend.
Jones died suddenly at the age of 59 in Mumbai last night of a suspected heart attack. He was working in India as a commentator for the Indian Premier League.
Jones played for Australia between 1984 and 1994, overlapping for a six year period with Sir Richard who retired from international cricket in 1990.
The former Black Cap pace bowler says the news took him by surprise.
"At 59 I mean that's far too young,: said Hadlee. "As a player and a competitor way back in our days in the 80s, yes we were at each other no question about that.
"We had some good contests on the field, but off the field we had mutual respect and over 30 odd years we developed a wonderful friendship, we did a lot of gigs together, we took the mickey out of each other. [We] had Christmas day with him actually last Christmas at his home in Romsey.
"That's the type of fella he was, he just had a lot of respect for other players, he engaged him. Just loved cricket, not only as a player but as a commentator, as a coach.
"At his home he's got part of the MCG playing outfield as part of his lawn, so that just shows you how much he loves cricket."
Jones played for Australia in 52 tests and 164 one-day internationals. He was known as a pioneering batsman in the 50 over game, as well as having impressive speed and fielding qualities - ones Hadlee took notice of.
"He was a great batsman in test cricket and a wonderful one day player, and I think he set the benchmark in one day cricket actually, more for his running between the wickets. He was so fast, stole a lot of runs and always had a smile on his face when he got to the other end.
"In our engagements we didn't say much of anything; I can't recall having a verbal stoush or anything like that. There was always a look, a nod, a wink, a glare and that's intimidation in itself."
"He said to me 'If you had bowled to me you wouldn't have gotten 400 test wickets'."