What are some (less-known) facts about Ajit Wadekar? - Letsdiskuss
LetsDiskuss Logo
Ask Question

Abdul Malik

News reporter (CEN News ) | Posted 16 Aug, 2018 |

What are some (less-known) facts about Ajit Wadekar?

Preeti Taneja

Entrepreneur | |Updated 16 Aug, 2018

I have always found it quite unsettling that majority of people find recognition and repute not in their life but in death. Indian cricket legend Ajit Wadekar finds himself in the same category.

Arguably India’s best test captain and an exceptional batsman who really built the founding ground on the which the likes of Tendulkars, Dhonis and Kohlis can build a dream palace on, Ajit Wadekar never really got the recognition in the mainstream media and audience that he so truly deserved.

(Courtesy: Hindustan Times)

Now he’s dead, at 77, after battling a prolonged illness. And we’re all talking about him and how great he was for one day. Unsettling. What good would that do him in dead! 

Nonetheless. If you’re one those with less clue about the legend of Ajit Wadekar, here are 5 known and unknown facts about him:

(i) Sunil Gavaskar, the name we toss as a ‘great’ in Indian cricket, has hailed Ajit Wadekar as the greatest test team captain in India of all time. Gavaskar made his debut under Wadekar’s captaincy and got immense assistance from him in his formative years. 

(ii) The first ever test series victory against England and West Indies, coming in 1971, came under the captainship of Ajit Wadekar. So, the fact that we’re even expecting Kohli-led team defeats England in their home turf, it all began with this Indian cricket legend. Prior to this, India just had one overseas win, against New Zealand, in 1967.

 (Courtesy: TOI)

(iii) Wadekar was a bit superstitious, along with few other team members. He believed the cricketer who scores a century in his debut would go on to have a failing career. For this same belief, when Sunil Gavaskar was debuting in the second test against West Indies, Wadekar asked other players to pray that Gavaskar doesn’t score a century. Their prayers did work. Gavaskar scored 65 and 67 in the two innings. 

(iv) Ajit Wadekar is the first ODI captain of Indian team (in 1974). A very common fact, yes.

(Courtesy: Indian Express)

(v) When captain, Ajit Wadekar made it compulsory for the entire team to come, meet and chill at the bar, irrespective of whether they drank alcohol or not. He did this to ensure no different groups are formed within the team and the players from diverse backgrounds can mix with everyone.

Let’s hope the country remembers this Indian cricket legend and we genuinely recognize his contribution, not just for a day but, for as long as Indian cricket exists. RIP Ajit Wadekar.