Like the greatest of cricketers produced by the West Indies, Tony Cozier too was a legend.

Writer, author, commentator, at times, even playing advisor to players in the Caribbean. In short, like the tagline of his fortnightly columns in this newspaper read, he was, “the voice of West Indies cricket.”

Also Read: Tony Cozier, the voice of West Indies cricket goes silent

Tony Cozier
Tony Cozier during a match between WI and Somerset at Taunton, England in 1995. Pic/ Getty Images

Cozier has been a contributor to this newspaper group for over four decades. Reports, analysis, interviews, profiles… he did them all for Sportsweek, World of Cricket and mid-day. We read them all as kids and as sub-editors we marveled at his flow just like we did when we listened to his commentary.

When I asked him to start writing a regular fortnightly column for our Sunday edition a couple of years ago, he agreed willingly. Not because he needed a platform in India, but because he was passionate about his craft and work which took him to all parts of the cricketing globe.

Tony Cozier
Tony Cozier during his 1974-75 tour of India. Pic/mid-daY ARCHIVES

Memorable trip
I last saw him in Sri Lanka during 2005 Triangular Series. In between broadcasting stints, he returned to the press box to file his copy. I sat behind my hero a few times on that tour and I was always curious to read the first line of his copy. He enjoyed his trip in company of fellow West Indian Gordon Brooks, the veteran photographer. The Lanka trip also afforded him a chance to meet Ian and Greg Chappell. Ian was on commentary duty while Greg was coach of the Indian team. He commentated and wrote about the two famous brothers when they played in the 1970s and 1980s and later shared space with them in the Channel Nine commentary box.

Apart from footage of West Indies cricket, Cozier made his presence felt in our bookshelves. He collaborated with Sir Garfield Sobers, Clive Lloyd and Michael Holding for books. Among the books he wrote were Fifty Years of West Indies Cricket and Supercat’s Summer – an account of the 1984-85 Australia vs West Indies series with Neil Jameson which was Lloyd’s last Test series. And of course, he edited all 22 editions of the West Indies Cricket Annual from 1970 to 1991.

Cozier had a big heart. As a youngster in 1988, I sought his help to get my copies of a Viv Richards biography and Gordon Greenidge’s autobiography signed by them. It was done and delivered without a fuss, the same kind of attitude that made him the enduring influence in West Indies cricket. Tony Cozier saw it all and deserved his exalted position in world cricket.