Ray Illingworth, a former England cricket team captain and coach, has passed away at the age of 89, Yorkshire County Cricket Club announced on Saturday.
Illingworth played 61 Tests for England between 1958 and 1973, scored 1836 runs and took 122 wickets as well. He captained England in 31 Tests, winning 12 of them.
He was also England’s chairman of selectors between 1993 and 1996 and was their coach in 1995-96.
“We are deeply saddened to learn that Ray Illingworth has passed away. Our thoughts are with Ray’s family and the wider Yorkshire family who held Ray so dear to their hearts,” Yorkshire wrote on their Twitter handle.
We are deeply saddened to learn that Ray Illingworth has passed away.Our thoughts are with Ray’s family and the wider Yorkshire family who held Ray so dear to their hearts #OneRose pic.twitter.com/nvQa2f7RMz
— Yorkshire CCC (@YorkshireCCC) December 25, 2021
While revealing his own battle with cancer, Illingworth opened up on the ‘terrible time’ his late wife Shirley experienced while receiving treatment for cancer.
“I don’t want to have the last 12 months that my wife had,” he revealed. “She had a terrible time going from hospital to hospital and in pain. I believe in assisted dying. The way my wife was, there was no pleasure in life in the last 12 months, and I don’t see the point of living like that, to be honest.
Illingworth said he supports changes related to the changes in laws on assisted dying. “But we don’t have assisted dying in England yet, so you don’t have the option do you? They are debating it and I think it will come eventually. A lot of doctors are against it, but if they had to live like my wife did in her last 12 months they might change their minds,” Illingworth said.