BRIDGETOWN, Barbados – Legendary Sir Garfield Sobers hailed late, former Barbados and West Indies teammate Seymour Nurse as a special talent who made “a great contribution to Barbados and West Indies cricket”.
Nurse, who played 29 Tests for West Indies between 1960 and 1969, passed away at the age of 85 on Monday in hospital here, after a long battle with illness.
“He was always the kind of person that you wanted in your team because he could play so well – he was such a great player and you could rely on him,” said Sir Garfield in an interview with the Nation newspaper here.
Sir Garfield, who featured in four century partnerships with Nurse in Tests, described his former teammate as a fine all-round sportsman.
“It is very sad to hear of the passing of Seymour, who has given so much not only in cricket, but in football as well,” said Sir Garry, who also captained Nurse for Barbados and West Indies. “I never saw him play football, but the reports about him on the football field have been glowing. He was a tremendous goal-scorer, so he was a good sportsman.”
Robin Bynoe, another former Barbados and West Indies teammate, said Nurse was easily one of the better players with whom he played.
“He was also very likeable and approachable,” he said. “Seymour was a good man and will be missed. Seymour made his mark.”
Desmond Haynes, the former Barbados and West Indies opening batsman, who brokes the news via a Facebook post said:
“My coach, my mentor, we all from the Holders Hill area. Love this man. We used to walk like Seymour, try to bat like him and try to talk like him. Thanks for everything you have done for me. May he rest in peace and rise in glory.”
President of the Barbados Cricket Association, Conde Riley also paid tribute to Nurse, who is survived by his twin daughters.
“The BCA mourns with the family, friends and colleagues of the legendary Seymour Nurse,” he said. “Though we mourn, we are thankful that Barbados and West Indies cricket is richer because of his selfless contribution. I was fortunate to visit with Seymour two weeks ago in the company of (West Indies legends) Sir Wes Hall, Sir Charlie Griffith and Desmond Haynes, along with BCA vice president Calvin Hope, but news of his passing still came as a surprise.”
Kathy Harper-Hall, a former assistant director of the National Sports Council, for whom Nurse worked for many years coaching the game across Barbados, also mourned his passing.
“I just lost the best workmate I ever had,” she said. “We made a formidable team to run the technical programme at the NSC. His gentle manner and exceptional level of respectfulness made it so easy to work with him.”