Peter Sainsbury, the only man to play in both of Hampshire’s County Championship-winning sides, has died. He was 80.
The left-arm spinner and right-handed batsman was a key figure when Hampshire won the Championship in 1961 and 1973.
He claimed the wicket which won the Championship when the title was clinched against Derbyshire at Bournemouth in 1961.
Sainsbury also helped Hampshire lift the Sunday League in 1975, retiring at the end of the following summer.
Only seven men have scored more first-class runs for Hampshire than Sainsbury’s 19,576.
And only four have taken more first-class wickets for the county than Sainsbury’s 1,245.
Sainsbury was also an outstanding fielder, taking 617 first-class catches during his 22-year playing career, at the end of which he coached Hampshire, overseeing the county’s first Lord’s final, which they won, in 1988.
Hampshire chairman Rod Bransgrove said: “We are all sharing a profound sense of loss at the sad passing of one of the Club's true legends as both a player and a person. Our sympathies and thoughts are with Peter's wife, Joyce and his devoted family. A sad day for Hampshire Cricket.”
Several cricketing greats have paid tribute to ‘Sains’ on Twitter.
Sir Ian Botham posted a picture of Sainsbury “coming to my aid after Andy Roberts had removed 4 of my teeth!!” before adding, “A great servant to Hampshire !”
Shaun Udal, another Hampshire-born Hampshire legend: “Gutted to hear the tragic news of the death of the man that signed me for @hantscricket, Peter Sainsbury. A real old school top man #rip”
Former teammate Barry Richards: “So sorry to hear passing of Peter Sainsbury old Hants team mate, cricket man be missed RIP Sains.”
Former Hampshire captain Mark Nicholas: “Am devastated by the loss of Peter Sainsbury. Friend, mentor and cricketer of immense commitment and skill. RIP Sains”