Prime Minister Narendra Modi, President Ram Nath Kovind and the Indian cricket fraternity led the tributes to former Indian cricket team captain Ajit Wadekar, who died on Wednesday at the age of 77. Wadekar breathed his last at Mumbai's Jaslok Hospital after a prolonged illness.
PM Modi, in his Tweet, said Wadekar would be remembered for his rich contribution to Indian cricket.
"A great batsman & wonderful captain, he led our team to some of the most memorable victories in our cricketing history. He was also respected as an effective cricket administrator. Pained by his demise," Modi tweeted.
Ajit Wadekar will be remembered for his rich contribution to Indian cricket. A great batsman & wonderful captain, he led our team to some of the most memorable victories in our cricketing history. He was also respected as an effective cricket administrator. Pained by his demise.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) August 15, 2018
Meanwhile, President Kovind expressed his grief, saying "Wadekar was one of Indian cricket’s finest left-handed batsman and captain during the iconic overseas test victories in 1971 in the Caribbean and England."
Sad at the passing of Ajit Wadekar, one of Indian cricket’s finest left-handed batsman and captain during the iconic overseas test victories in 1971 in the Caribbean and England. Condolences to his family and to the cricket fraternity #PresidentKovind— President of India (@rashtrapatibhvn) August 15, 2018
Many past and present cricketers too paid their respects to the legendary cricketer.
V sad news-Ajit Wadekar passing away-only Indn Capt to win 3 series in a row-2 away 1 at home-ALW was good contemporary-we had differences o opinion but always respected glory o Crkt-fine batsman & great close in catch-served Indn Crkt w/aplomb as player/Selectr/Coach-RIP Jeetu!— Bishan Bedi (@BishanBedi) August 15, 2018
Extremely saddened by the news that former Indian cricket captain #AjitWadekar is no more. He led India to many historic victories! My condolences to the friends & family! RIP Sir, you will always be missed!— Suresh Raina🇮🇳 (@ImRaina) August 15, 2018
Deeply saddened by the demise of an iconic Indian cricketer Ajit Wadekar ji. Thoughts with his family and close ones. May his soul rest in peace.— Irfan Pathan (@IrfanPathan) August 15, 2018
Extremely sad to hear the passing of Ajit Wadekar ji. Thoughts and prayers with his family. His legacy will go on for ever.— Deep Dasgupta (@DeepDasgupta7) August 15, 2018
Saddened to hear about the passing away of Ajit Wadekar Sir. He was a great captain who led India to series wins in England and West Indies in 1971. May his soul rest in peace. #RIPAjitWadekar pic.twitter.com/O2NTykieqb— MANOJ TIWARY (@tiwarymanoj) August 15, 2018
With a heavy heart we bid adieu to Ajit Wadekar. The former India captain is no more. Cricketer, Coach, Manager and Chairman of Selectors - Mr Wadekar served Indian cricket in many different ways. pic.twitter.com/6zdFtleXB9— BCCI (@BCCI) August 15, 2018
Wadekar, who played 37 Tests, led India to historic triumphs in the West Indies and England in the 1970s. Under him, India won five matches in the West Indies in the early 1970s before beating England in a three-match series.
Wadekar, who scored 2,113 Test runs with 14 half-centuries and a century, led India to a third successive series victory, beating England once again in 1972-73.
He also appeared in two One-day Internationals. An aggressive left-handed batsman, Wadekar made his first-class debut in 1958-59 before making his India debut in 1966-67.
After his retirement, he also served as the Manager of the national team led by Mohammed Azharuddin in the 1990s.
(With agency inputs)