JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA - AUGUST 08, Elize Lombard (CEO Northerns Cricket Union) during the Cricket SA Womens Day event at Bidvest Wanderers Stadium on August 08, 2012 in Johannesburg, South Africa Photo by Duif du Toit / Gallo Images

Johannesburg – The Northerns Cricket Union confirmed the untimely death of CEO Elise Lombard on Thursday.

“I would like to place on record Elise's commitment to cricket over the past 32 years,” said Northerns president Vincent Sinovich.

“She was unwavering in her dedication and the efficient way she fulfilled her role as CEO, beyond the boundaries of duty.

“Elise is a great loss to the union and also to the cricket world.”

Sinovich extended his sympathy to Lombard's family and spoke on behalf of all those involved in cricket.

“On behalf of my Executive, my Board, the players, the staff – (past and present) and fellow cricket followers, we extend our deepest condolences to Elise’s family Eloise & Rudi, Louis, Karen and grandchildren George and Mia.

“Elise will be greatly missed by all those in the cricket fraternity.”

Cricket SA's acting CEO Jacques Faul also expressed his dismay on hearing the news.

“This has come as a huge blow to all of us and one that will be felt by the entire CSA family throughout the country,” said Faul.

“On behalf of all the participants and supporters of our wonderful game, I extend our deepest sympathy to her family, friends and colleagues.

“During her time in office she turned the Easterns Titans franchise into one of the powerhouses in the land and she contributed enormously to the financial well-being of the game.

“Only yesterday, she was the guest speaker at CSA's function to celebrate National Women's Day and it was typical of her that she also found time to send Mark Boucher a special message of support for his recovery and the new initiative he has launched to save our rhinos.”

Lombard died as a result of a heart attack, and members of the cricket fraternity flocked to Twitter and other social networking sites to express their shock and grief.

“Sad day for titans cricket!” said Titans batsman Jacques Rudolph, in England with the Proteas said:

Faf du Plessis said: “So sad 2 hear about titans ceo elise lombaard's death.was an amazing woman who did so much 4 the titans and always a smile on her face.”

Funeral arrangements would be announced in due course. – Sapa