Former Australia Test captain Ian Chappell is battling skin cancer.

Chappell, 75, has reportedly just finished six weeks of intensive radiation therapy after having carcinomas cut out of his shoulder, armpit and neck.

The Daily Telegraph reported the cricket great, who captained the Test side between 1971 and 1975, is set to get a full report from specialists on Monday.

“When you hit 70 you feel (vulnerable) anyhow, but I guess I’ve got so used to bloody skin cancers over the years, and the fact that none of them have been melanomas, probably provides a bit of comfort. It may be naivety on my part,” Chappell told The Daily Telegraph.

“I’ve had multiple skin cancers cut off, burnt off and every other way you can get rid of them.

“You get to 70 and you start to think, ‘Christ, it’s getting near the end now’. But I saw my mother, Jeanne near the end and she’d come to grips with death, and that’s probably when I thought, ‘s**t, this is something you need to deal with’. Not that you’re trying to rush it, but when it comes you’re comfortable.

“I guess I’ve been in that mode for a while now, and when it happens you just say, ‘well, I’ve had a pretty good time’ and that’s it. When Richie and Tony (Nine commentary comrades Richie Benaud and Tony Greig) went … again, it was just a reminder that it happens to everybody.”


Chappell, who used to play with his shirt unbuttoned like his idol Benaud, admitted he had had a few cancers cut out of his chest.

He said he’s kept his battle quiet because he didn’t know what radiotherapy would be like, but says he’s ready to return to the Nine Network’s commentary team for the upcoming Ashes series on August 1.

“I told family and gradually a couple of my teammates and I’ve been getting calls from them pretty regularly which is nice,” Chappell said.

“With the Ashes coming up now, I’ll speak to Nine and just say, ‘look, I’m ready to go if you need me’.”