Dean Jones and Irfan Pathan had a long conversation about life, family and cricket on Wednesday. Far away from home, both were inside the bio-bubble as part of the Indian Premier League (IPL) official broadcaster's commentary panel in Mumbai, and as they headed towards the studios, Jones walked down the memory lane - narrating stories of his playing days.
It was a fun conversation, and the ever jovial Jones looked happy.
On Thursday as the cricketing world mourned the death of Jones - who passed away following a cardiac arrest - Irfan was yet to come to terms with it. “We were together yesterday during the match. He was fine and was working with us with the same energy. It is unbelievable,” Pathan told Sportstar.
A couple of days ago, Jones requested him to speak to his 10-year-old son back home via video chat. “I had a video call with his son two days ago and he was very excited. We had a fun conversation… Everything was normal and (he) was very happy that I spoke to his son. We were having a hearty laugh and today he is not there!,” Pathan reminisced. “He was fine. He was in his usual self, who loved life…”
Read: Former Australia cricketer Dean Jones passes away in Mumbai
Even on Thursday morning, Jones had come down for breakfast in the hotel - where all the commentators and the crew are put up - and even attended the daily meeting. He complained of chest pain and died just outside his room. Even though he was rushed to a nearby hospital, Jones was declared brought dead.
Even his fellow commentator Jatin Sapru took to social media to express his condolences. “Our family here lost one of our dearest members, who kept us all in happy high spirits at all times. There wasn’t ever a moment without his joke, a story or just that warm happy smile. Saw him last this morning in his usual charged up self prepping for dugout… Gone too soon Deano,” he tweeted.
After quitting the game, Jones had a successful career as a commentator and cricket expert - travelling around the world. And the cricketing fraternity will remember him as a fun-loving, cheerful and ever-friendly person.
"Horrible news to wake up to... You were more than a player I had played against, you were my friend, my brother. Will deeply miss your smile & your presence where ever cricket is played around the world. Rest in Peace Deano man. The world needed more from you!," West Indies legend Vivian Richards tweeted.