Rudi Koertzen: Accident| Death| Car accident| Slow finger

Rudi Koertzen: Cause of death| How did die| Death cause

Rudi Eric Koertzen was an international cricket umpire. A cricket enthusiast since his youth, he played league cricket while working as a clerk for South African Railways. He began umpiring in 1981, before becoming a full-time official eleven years later.

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Rudi Koertzen: Accident| Death| Car accident| Slow finger


The cricket world has been paying tribute to Rudi Koertzen, the South African umpire famous for his long, slow finger of fate upon giving a player out, after he died in a car crash aged 73.

A hugely popular umpire on the global circuit, Koertzen officiated in 331 international matches during an 18-year career – a record at the time and one that has since been broken by Aleem Dar of Pakistan – before his retirement in 2010.


News of Koertzen’s death broke on Tuesday morning when South Africa’s men emerged for the first morning of their four-day warmup match against England Lions in Canterbury wearing black armbands.

“Koertzen’s status as a legend of the game will live on for ever,” Cricket South Africa said in a statement.

Car Accident:

Rudi Koertzen: Accident| Death| Car accident| Slow finger

According to reports in South Africa, the former umpire was one of four people killed in a head-on collision while driving back from Cape Town to his home in Despatch, Eastern Cape, after a golf weekend with friends.

Dar, who like Koertzen is one of three ICC elite umpires to stand in more than 100 Tests, told ESPNCricinfo: “It is a very big loss foremost for his family and then for South Africa and cricket.

Slow Finger:

He became known as the ‘slow finger of death’ because he very slowly raising his finger whenever indicating a batsman was out.

“Every umpire has their trademark and that was mine. The media labelled it the ‘slow finger of death’ and I found that pretty interesting. There is a story behind it,” Koertzen said in an interview.