RIP Bapu Nadkarni: Gavaskar recalls 'useful manager', Tendulkar offers condolences

RAJKOT: Legends Sunil Gavaskar & Sachin Tendulkar on Friday he offered his condolences to the former multifaceted India Bapu Nadkarni Death.

Nadkarni, 86, died Friday after an illness related to old age.

He played 41 Test matches for India & was best known for his parsimonious left-arm spin bowling & ability to get maiden overs at will, including 21 consecutive ones against England in a Test match in Madras (now Chennai).

"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 & dear ones," Tendulkar tweeted.

For Gavaskar, it was more a personal loss, since he fondly remembered Nadkarni's proactive role as assistant manager who doubled as a tactician during India's tour of Australia in 1980-81.

"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 & 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.

Every time I was on a tour, it was very useful in terms of strategy. At lunch or team time, I said you would try this if you were a field captain. I would tell you to bring this bowler, or I would ask this bowler to play. Around the wicket. It was fantastic. Indian cricket has lost a true champion.

The iconic opener also recalled how Nadkarni helped Sandeep Patil to recover quickly from concussion that he suffered after being hit on the head by a Len Pascoe bouncer. Patil came back in the next Test & scored a memorable 174, a knock that was the highlight of his inconsistent career.

"He was probably the main guy instrumental in having Sandeep Patil come back after a blow on his head. He was the one who kept urging Sandeep that 'it doesn't matter, you are here & you should go out & bat again'.

Bapuji was the assistant manager on the tour. It was only for him that Sandeep managed to score that 174 in the next Test match because Bapuji was constantly there with him.