The cricketing community was shocked and saddened after learning about the death of West Indian cricketer Runako Morton on Sunday 4th March.
Morton, 33, who was driving home after a cricket match in Trinidad, lost control of his car and crashed into a utility pole, killing him instantly.
Morton’s teammate Chris Gayle sent out his condolences via his Twitter account. “We lost a True Warrior West Indies cricketer, Runako Morton may his soul rest in peace! Our memories together Live On! My Condolences to his Family” he said.
With the sudden passing of their teammate, past and present West Indian cricketers, such as all rounder Dwayne Bravo and current Captain Darren Sammy, have decided to set up the Runako Morton Tribute Fund Auction Initiative.
The auction will include prized and signed memorabilia from a host of international cricketers and will begin on Friday 16th March.
Bravo, who is grieving the loss of his good friend and teammate, said: “We felt what Runako’s family need at this time is the knowledge and comfort of knowing that they have our unwavering support and we felt an auction of prized, signed memorabilia would be a wonderful way to make known, what an important role Runako played as a teammate and a friend.”
Morton, leaves behind a wife and three children, who, according to Bravo, will receive all the benefits from the auction.
Morton represented the West Indies in 15 test matches, scored 573 runs, with 70 not out being the highest score out of the four half centuries he scored in his test career. He also played 56 ODI matches for his country, scoring 1,519 runs. He made 10 half centuries and two centuries during his ODI career, which included a highest score of 110 not out. However, Morton was also picked to play in seven Twenty20 Internationals and had scored a total of 96 runs, with his highest score being 40.
His career altogether has spanned an impressive 17 years at international, regional and national levels.
West Indian Captain, Darren Sammy hoped that the rest of the cricketing world would help support the effort to pay tribute to Morton. “It is important to us that his name and his memory live on. We want his family to know that although he is gone, he is not forgotten, and we hope cricket fans around the world will join us in supporting this initiative and allow us to bring forth something positive from such a tragic event” he said.
West Indies Cricket Board President, Julian Hunte, who is also mourning the loss of Morton, said: “Runako’s passing, still in the prime of life, leaves us all in shock, he will be remembered as a fierce competitor on the field who gave no quarter whether he was playing for West Indies, Leeward Islands, Nevis or Trinidad and Tobago.”