LONDON: Sussex fast bowler Matthew Hobden has died at the age of 22, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced on Sunday.
Hobden made his first-class debut for Sussex in 2014 and represented the county across all formats of the game over the past three seasons.
A cause of death has not been announced.
“Matt was a young cricketer with huge potential, and he is going to be missed so badly by all the guys,” Kevin Shine, the ECB’s lead fast bowling coach, said in a statement.
“He made you smile every time you saw him, because he was so excited to be there and wanted to be the best he could.”
Hobden was tipped to become an England international and was one of six players recently selected to take part in the ECB’s England Performance Programme (PEPP).
England’s players wore black armbands during the second day of the second Test against South Africa in Cape Town on Sunday.
In a statement, Sussex said: “Sussex Cricket is deeply shocked and saddened to hear of the passing of Matthew Hobden.
“Matthew was an exciting young cricketer with a big future ahead of him in the game. He was a fantastic individual who had progressed through Sussex’s youth and academy ranks, having been born locally in Eastbourne.
“He will be greatly missed. Sussex would like to offer their deepest condolences to Matthew’s family and friends at this difficult time.”
Sussex captain Ed Joyce wrote on Twitter: “In shock. Can’t get my head around the news. RIP Matt Hobden. Thoughts with his family.”
Former Sussex and England wicketkeeper-batsman Matt Prior tweeted: “Thoughts & prayers with all of Matt Hobden’s family at this tragic time. A great guy with a huge future taken far too soon.”
England one-day captain Eoin Morgan said: “Thoughts and prayers are with Matt Hobden’s family and friends at this extremely difficult time.”