Henry Olonga apologizes for false news of Heath Streak’s death, says ‘I am very sorry’

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AdelaideFormer Zimbabwe fast bowler Henry Olonga has said in a long apology note that he is extremely sorry to be given the false news that his former teammate-cum-friend of 39 years Heath Streak has passed away.Earlier this week In 2010, Olonga posted on X, formerly Twitter, that Streak had passed away, news spread quickly. But clarification soon came that the streak had not died down, with Olonga himself posting that the former Zimbabwean all-rounder is absolutely alive.

“In any case, I am told that Heath’s condition has worsened. We were encouraged to write kind words in his praise. So it seemed imminent, Olonga wrote in his Facebook post, “I won’t go into too much detail about how the miscommunication happened, but rest assured, like everyone else, I first heard this story on Facebook.”

”I immediately texted Heath and Nadine to verify. Due to late night they took some time to respond. I texted a few close cricket associates who know the family well and they confirmed it to be true. I asked sharp questions to confirm but he was convinced.

“I finally heard from Heath the day before so it felt sudden,” he said. But I was really devastated because I truly believed he was gone. And whatever emotions I felt, I am sure the people who faced the story also felt it.

Olonga further wrote that he later received a message from Streak, asking him to ‘reverse the decision’. “Obviously I am extremely sorry that I took this as gospel. I then posted my own tribute, which was very popular (among the many tributes there were) but a few hours later received a message from Heath asking me to reverse the decision. (His sense of humor has always been great).”

”Then I had to step back and try to fix an error that unfortunately had become global. But how can it be easily rectified in today’s age? So I retreated as far as possible. Of course I apologized profusely to Streaks after Clanger. They didn’t need it.

‘In any case, I hope you now understand the context and would appreciate again your apologies on my behalf in this unfortunate matter. I am very sad about this. It is heartening to see how much love is out there for our champion.

The former Zimbabwe captain and considered one of the country’s finest all-rounders, Streak has taken 216 wickets in Tests and 239 wickets in ODIs. Apart from coaching Zimbabwe and Bangladesh, he has also coached with Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) and the now defunct Gujarat Lions. He is currently battling cancer and was banned for eight years in 2021 by the International Cricket Council (ICC) for breaching the Anti-Corruption Code in 2018.

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