Martin Crowe passed away on Thursday (March 3), at the age of 53 after a long battle with cancer. The former New Zealand captain had been diagnosed with lymphoma is 2012, and suffered a remission in 2014.

Widely acknowledged as one of the finest batsmen in the word and perhaps the greatest ever from New Zealand, Crowe was held in equally high regard for his leadership and his vision. Players from across the globe, current and former colleagues, administrators and other prominent personalities all expressed their grief and paid their respects.

From New Zealand:

Referring to Crowe as “a great friend”, Waqar Younis, Pakistan coach, said: “I am probably one fast bowler, who had played a lot of cricket against Martin. [He was] a complete batsman, an institution and great to watch for youngsters. It’s a great loss to his family, his nation and great loss to me as he was a was superb friend … There are a lot of fond memories of our playing days and even after that. A year before his cancer was detected, we had together done commentary in a Pakistan v New Zealand series. Great human being.”

Wasim Akram, Younis’s former teammate and bowling partner, called Crowe a great player of reverse swing. Explaining, Younis said, “Wasim probably was talking about 1991, when he came over and scored a couple of centuries (Crowe actually scored a half-century and a century). He became the highest run-getter from New Zealand in three Tests. On a greentop against us, he managed so beautifully against reverse swing, which was a new phenomenon in those days. Deliveries coming at that pace, I felt he managed it beautifully. Probably the best batsman who negated reverse swing.”

Mahendra Singh Dhoni said it was a sad day for cricket. “Frankly speaking I’ve not seen Martin Crowe play much. Because I was not a keen watcher of the game. But I have heard about him a lot. But as is the case with 99% of the New Zealand players, they are fantastic human beings. I have had the opportunity of interacting with a lot of New Zealand players. It is a sad day for cricket but at the same time it is very important to give respect to the individual and we pray God to give strength to his family. And keep moving on. It’s a sad day.”

Among former players who took to Twitter:

You will always be a legend in my eyes. Thank you for all your help and advice. Now you can rest easy my friend. Miss you already

A photo posted by Michael Clarke (@michaelclarkeofficial) on

Current players:

The extended cricketing family: