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WPCA Pays Tribute to Abduraghmaan “Lefty” Adams

Cape Town, Saturday 28th January 2023

Photo Supplied by Primrose Cricket Club

It is with sadness that the Western Province Cricket Association learned of the passing on Friday 27th January of the legendary Abduraghmaan “Lefty” Adams. WPCA President Ashraf Burns and CEO Michael Canterbury, the Board and members of the Association send their condolences to the Adams family.

President Ashraf Burns paid this tribute: ” A wily left arm spinner who would have represented his country if not for apartheid. Our heartfelt condolences to his children Feirouz, Faseegha, Sameer, the loved ones and Primrose CC family. We beseech the Almighty to illuminate his grave and grant him a lofty rank in Paradise. Ameen.”

Lefty, or “Boeta Maan” as he was affectionately known, is widely regarded in cricketing circles as one of the greatest left-arm orthodox spinners of his era. Born in a time that destined him never to be allowed to represent his country at the highest level, his achievements on and off the field are a remarkable testament to a cricketing hero.

He started his cricketing career as a teenager, hastily drafted into the starting XI, where he had originally come to the game to be the scorer. It was the start of a life playing, coaching and managing cricket. During his playing career, he represented EP, WP and Griquas at Provincial level, and played leading roles at Pirates, Pioneers and Primrose Cricket Clubs. In December 2021, Primrose CC presented Lefty with a Certificate of Commendation, paying deserved homage to him and his life in cricket.

In the words of Abdul Patel, “His full story, contribution and legacy remains incompletely told and documented and should be fully recorded in the annals of democratic, political and sports history in South Africa and cricket globally. His fight for non-racial unified sport are the fruits enjoyed by the beneficiaries of sport, especially cricketers, in democratic South Africa today.”

Photo Courtesy of Mo Allie

WP legend Vincent Barnes recalls playing with Lefty, and penned this as part of his tribute: “Tough as nails and did not know the meaning of the word defeat. One of the most memorable provincial matches I played in was when we had to defend 62 in the second innings against EP. As we sat quietly in the changeroom before going out to bowl, Lefty, who was our captain, made this comment. “Ek is 42 en 42 is hulle naam” He marched out of the changeroom, took the new ball with me. EP were mesmerised by the skill of the man. 42 all out. (The captain took 6/7). Lefty, a highly respected stalwart in the fight for non-racial sport in our country, will be missed.”

Photo Courtesy of Mo Allie

Tributes will rightly continue to pour in for this legend of the game in South Africa. His First Class records, which reflect his time playing in segregated cricket, are outstanding. 122 Wickets at an average of 15.28, with an economy rate of 2.18 runs per over. A man of principal, Lefty shunned lucrative offers to play across the colour line. At club cricket level, his contributions included taking over 100 wickets per season for a number of years, including a hat-trick in both innings.

He touched the lives of so many. Primrose Cricket Club, where he was a lifelong member, rightly call him a Cricket legend. Perhaps a most fitting way to end this tribute is in the words of respected journalist Mo Allie: “The great Abduraghmaan “Lefty” Adams has departed this world. Sad day. Great cricketer, fabulous human being. Massively honoured to have known him.”

May you Rest in Peace, Boeta Maan.