Worcestershire have lost 'brilliant guy and fantastic cricketer'

Josh Baker playing for Worcestershire
Josh Baker played 47 games in all formats for Worcestershire [Getty Images]

Worcestershire have lost "a brilliant guy and a fantastic cricketer" with the death of Josh Baker, says his former coach Shaftab Khalid.

West Mercia Police are not investigating the death of the 20-year-old spinner on Thursday having deemed there are no suspicious circumstances.

Khalid, the England Under-19s spin coach, worked with the left-armer as he came through the youth ranks with Worcestershire and England.

The senior coroner for Worcestershire has confirmed that he has received a referral reporting Baker's death.

“At this moment no further information is available until further investigations have taken place,” he added.

Baker's death was announced just a day after he took three wickets in a county second XI fixture against Somerset on Wednesday.

"It was devastating, having worked with him since he was 16," Khalid told BBC Sport.

"Worcestershire lost not just a very talented cricketer but also an amazing and wonderful human being. He was such a nice, humble and sweet person."

Born in Redditch, Baker made his first-class debut in 2021 and represented England Under-19s before signing a three-year contract with his home county last year.

He played 47 games in all formats, taking 70 wickets, including two County Championship appearances this season, the last against Durham in April.

Khalid, a former Worcestershire off-spinner, added: "He was very young when he got his professional contract but was trying to help his mates, to guide them - in a way like a big brother - to help them get a professional contract.

"Being such a young kid, he was the heart and soul of the dressing room. He got along very well with all the coaches. He was a Worcestershire boy so playing for his county and then the England Under-19s, the dream was coming true.

"He was an all-format cricketer and had a massive future, but unfortunately you never know what's going to happen in life. It's a massive lesson for everyone. He will be truly missed."