MUMBAI — India's most economic bowler Bapu Nadkarni, who also held England at bay as a batsman in a landmark Test series has died at the age of 86.
"Indian cricket has lost a real champion," said batting legend Sunil Gavaskar after learning of Nadkarni's death in Mumbai.
The all-rounder conceded just 2,559 runs from 9,165 balls bowled with his left-arm spin in 41 Tests for India between 1955 and 1968. He was also a team manager for India and chief selector for a while.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) hailed Nadkarni's "miserly" Test record in its tribute.
It highlighted a landmark home series against England in 1964. "In one of the best displays of frugal bowling, Nadkarni bowled 21 maiden overs during the first Test against England at Madras,"
"In the fifth and final Test of the same series, he scored 52 not out in the first innings and batted for 418 minutes and remained unbeaten on 122 when India were made to follow on." India held out for a draw.
"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," India's batting hero Sachin Tendulkar wrote on Twitter.
Gavaskar said: "He was a gritty cricketer despite playing in the days when gloves and thigh pads were not very good."
— Agence France-Presse