Sachin Tendulkar's childhood coach Ramakant Achrekar passes away
Ramakant Achrekar, the man who discovered Sachin Tendulkar, passed away earlier today in Mumbai. He was 86 years old.
Apart from coaching the Master Blaster, Achrekar also coached the likes of Ajit Agarkar, Vinod Kambli, and Praveen Amre.
The 86-year-old founded the Kamath Memorial Cricket Club many years ago at Shivaji Park in Mumbai, where he coached and nurtured these cricketers. The club is currently run by his daughter and son-in-law.
Sachin Tendulkar, who is considered to be one of the best batsmen, constantly praised Achrekar for helping him and nurturing him as a batsman. Over the course of his playing career, Sachin spoke about Achrekar's teaching methods and how he helped him develop as a batsman.
“(Achrekar) Sir was strict at times, extremely strict and also caring and loving. Sir did not say well-played to me ever, (but) I knew (when) Sir has taken me to have bhelpuri or paani-puri, Sir is happy, I have done something nice on the field,” he once told PTI.
Sachin would visit his guru on occasions like Teacher's Day and shower him with a lot of respect. Achrekar was also mentioned in Sachin Tendulkar's movie "Sachin: A Billion Dreams," which focussed on Sachin's life and how he became a successful cricketer.
Ramakant Achrekar himself was a cricketer many decades ago. However, he did not achieve much success. He played a lot of club cricket for teams like New Hind Sports Club and Young Maharashtra XI, to name a few. Later on, he played just one first-class match for All India State Bank in 1963-64.
He received a few accolades, including the Padma Shri in 2010 for his services to cricket coaching. The Padma Shri is one of the highest civilian awards in the country. He was also conferred with the Dronacharya award in 1990.