Smiles as friends remember 'Fiery Fred'

Cricket legends Brian Close and Dickie Bird enjoy a light-hearted moment with Fred Trueman's widow Veronica at a gala dinner held in his honour last night.

The event at the Queens Hotel in Leeds celebrated the unveiling of a bronze statue in memory of the Yorkshire and England fast bowler, left.

The statue of Mr Trueman, created by artist Graham Ibbeson, is due to be revealed in Skipton Canal Basin this morning.

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Dinner guests had the chance to bid for auction items, including a bat signed by England and New Zealand players after Mr Trueman's final Test match in 1965.

The bat was also signed by 13 members of Yorkshire's 1965 side and players from Gloucestershire, Sussex and Worcestershire.

Trueman, who died in 2006, was regarded as one of the greatest fast bowlers ever to play Test cricket for England.

Nicknamed Fiery Fred, he was the first cricketer to take 300 Test wickets.

Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe.