Former Australian cricketer Andrew Symonds dies in car accident

Former Australian cricketer Andrew Symonds has been killed in a car accident, aged 46.

Allrounder Symonds was a two-time World Cup winner who represented Australia in 26 tests, 198 one-day internationals and 14 Twenty20 internationals over an 11-year span from 1998. 

He went on to a career as a broadcaster with Fox Sports.

The accident occurred on Saturday night in Townsville, where Symonds had lived since retiring in 2012.

Andrew Symonds at Shane Warne's memorial service earlier this year.
Andrew Symonds at Shane Warne's memorial service earlier this year. Photo credit: Getty Images

Queensland Police have confirmed they're investigating a single-vehicle crash involving a 46-year-old man in Hervey Range, near Townsville.

"Early information indicates, shortly after 11pm the car was being driven on Hervey Range Road, near Alice River Bridge when it left the roadway and rolled," Police said.

"Emergency services attempted to revive the 46-year-old driver and sole occupant, however, he died of his injuries.

"The Forensic Crash Unit is investigating."

Symonds death is another tragic blow to the Australian cricketing community, after legendary spinner Shane Warne died suddenly of a heart attack in March, the same day as former wicketkeeper Rod Marsh. 

Adam Gilchrist and Symonds celebrate their 2003 World Cup triumph.
Adam Gilchrist and Symonds celebrate their 2003 World Cup triumph. Photo credit: Getty Images

In his prime, Symonds - forever sporting his trademark dreadlocks and zinc -  was regarded as one of the world's premier limited-overs specialists, capable of swinging a match with his power-hitting, off-spin bowling, and sublime skills in the field.

He played a key role in Australia's consecutive World Cup triumphs in 2003 and 2007, highlighted by a stunning undefeated 143 in the 2003 tournament opener against Pakistan.

He finished his ODI career with a batting average of 39.75 and a total of 133 wickets, boasting a top score of 156. He scored six centuries and 30 fifties.

In his relatively short test career, he scored at an impressive rate of 40.61, notching two centuries and 10 fifties.

Symonds was involved in his fair share of controversies, including an alcohol-related incident at the 2009 T20 World Cup that resulted in Cricket Australia sending him home and ripping up his contract to bring an unceremonious end to his international career.

Cricket Australia said it was "shocked and saddened" by the news of Symonds' death.

"Andrew was a much-loved and admired cricketer in Australia and around the world," it said in a statement.

"He was a prodigious talent from an early age in Queensland with his clean ball-striking ability, shrewd spin bowling and brilliant fielding.

"He will be sadly missed by the Australian cricket community and particularly his very close friends at the Queensland Bulls where he was a popular and much-admired team-mate and friend.

"Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this devastatingly sad time."