Sport Cricket Former Australian Test spinner Bruce Yardley dies of cancer

Former Australian Test spinner Bruce Yardley dies of cancer

Bruce Yardley in his heyday at the 1982 Third Test match against England at the Adelaide Oval in Australia. Photo: Getty
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Former Australian Test off-spinner Bruce Yardley has died, aged 71, after  a long illness with cancer.

The West Australian newspaper reported that Yardley died at Kununurra hospital on Wednesday.

He played 33 Tests and seven one-day internationals in a six-year career from 1978 to 1983 that yielded 126 Test wickets at an average of 31.63.

In 1981-82, he famously won the Datsun sports car for International Cricketer of the Year having taken his Test best of 7-98 against the West Indies at Sydney.

Yardley was also a handy batsman, scoring four Test half-centuries including a 74 against the fearsome West Indies pace attack on their home turf in Bridgetown in 1977-78. He averaged just under 20.

Yardley later coached Sri Lanka and helped train Muttiah Muralitharan, who holds the world record for the most wickets in both Test and one-day cricket.

On Twitter former teammates and fans paid tribute to Yardley’s temperament and skills.

-with AAP