The Indian cricketers were seen wearing black armbands as they took the field during the series-deciding third ODI against Australia in Bengaluru on Sunday. The gesture is a mark of tribute to the departed former India allrounder Bapu Nadkarni who breathed his last on January 17.
Nadkarni died aged 86 and is survived by his wife and a daughter.
Having made his debut in December 1955, he represented India in 45 Tests, scored 1414 runs at 25.70. He made a name with his economical bowling, having taken 88 wickets at 29.07 and an excellent economy of 1.67, the second best in Test history among bowlers with 50 or more scalps.
The left-arm spinner rose to fame when he bowled a record 21 successive maiden overs during the Chennai Test in January 1964 in England’s first innings. He finished with figures of 32-27-5-0.
Overall, he played in 191 first-class matches, scored 8880 runs and took 500 wickets in them.
Tributes began pouring in after the news of his demise broke.
Batting legend Sachin Tendulkar wrote, “Very sad to hear about the demise of Shri Bapu Nadkarni. I grew up hearing about the record of him bowling 21 consecutive maiden overs in a Test. My condolences to his family and dear ones. Rest in Peace Sir.”
Sunil Gavaskar recounted the time he spent with Nadkarni when he was assistant manager during a number of Indian tours. “He came as an assistant manager for quite a number of our tours. He was very encouraging. His favourite term was “chhoddo matt” [hang in there]. He was a gritty cricketer despite playing in the days when gloves and thigh pads were not very good, not much protective equipment as you would get hit. But still hang in there as he believed in “chhoddo matt”,’ Gavaskar told reporters in Rajkot on Friday.