Rajinder Goel, highest wicket-taker in Ranji, dies; condolences pour in

Sourav Ganguly condoled the demise of Rajinder Goel, saying that the cricketer's staggering record in domestic cricket tells everything about his craft.
Legendary first-class spinner Rajinder Goel died on Sunday owing to age-related illnesses. He was 77 and is survived by his wife and son Nitin Goel, who has also played first-class cricket and is a domestic match-referee.

 

"It is a huge loss for the game of cricket and personally for me. He was one of the best, if not the best left-arm spinner that this country has ever seen. His contribution to the game post retirement was massive," former BCCI president Ranbir Singh Mahendra said, expressing his grief. 

Rajinder Goel domestic cricket record

  • With 637 Ranji Trophy wickets, Goel who played his last game in the 1984-85 season, remains the leading wicket-taker of India's premier domestic first-class competition. 
  • Overall, the left-arm spinner, who was unlucky to have played in the era of Bishan Singh Bedi, had 750 first-class wickets from 157 games with an average of 18.58 in a career spanning 27 years. 
  • He played first-class cricket till the age of 44 and represented Patiala, Delhi, Southern Punjab and Haryana. The veteran spinner bagged 59 five-wicket hauls and 18 ten-wicket hauls. 
  • It was Bedi who presented him the BCCI's CK Nayudu Lifetime Achievement Award in 2017. He has been one of the four non-Test players to get the BCCI’s Lifetime Achievement Award. 
  • Goel as a player failed to win the Ranji Trophy, but he was the chairman of the Haryana selection committee in 1991 when a Kapil Dev-led side shocked Bombay (now Mumbai) at the Wankhede Stadium.
 Condolences

 

Cricket community lost a giant of domestic cricket: BCCI president Ganguly

 

President of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) Sourav Ganguly condoled the demise of Rajinder Goel, saying that the cricketer's staggering record in domestic cricket tells everything about his craft.

 

"The Indian cricketing community has lost a giant of domestic cricket today. His staggering record tells you about his craft and the control he had over it. To have a career that lasts more than 25 years and still be able to perform consistently speaks about his dedication and commitment towards the game," Ganguly said in an official media release of the BCCI.

 

"To be able to pick 750 wickets needs years and years of hard work and I salute his efforts. I extend my heartfelt condolences to his family," he added.

 

Shikhar Dhawan

 

India opener Shikhar Dhawan on Monday paid his tributes to the former first-class cricketer Rajinder Goel, who passed away at the age of 77.

 

"Rest in peace Rajinder Goel Sir. My thoughts and prayers with the family. God bless your soul," Dhawan tweeted. 

 

Rest in peace Rajinder Goel Sir. My thoughts and prayers with the family. God bless your soul  pic.twitter.com/qH7ZCIFsIC

Shikhar Dhawan (@SDhawan25) June 21, 2020
VVS Laxman

 

Former India batsman VVS Laxman expressed grief over the death of Goel and shared his heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of the deceased.

 

"Deeply saddened by the passing away of Shri Rajinder Goel, the highest wicket-taker in the history of Ranji Trophy. My heartfelt condolences to his family and loved ones," Laxman tweeted.

 

Deeply saddened by the passing away of Shri Rajinder Goel, the highest wicket-taker in the history of Ranji Trophy. My heartfelt condolences to his family and loved ones. pic.twitter.com/6wIOfolnJc

VVS Laxman (@VVSLaxman281) June 21, 2020
 

R Ashwin

 

Spinner Ravichandran Ashwin on Monday condoled the demise of domestic cricket stalwart Rajinder Goel and said the player has left a legacy that will last forever.

 

"The highest wicket-taker in Ranji Trophy cricket Rajinder Goel passes away, all I heard growing up was "what a fine left-arm spinner Rajinder Goel was" I have not seen you bowl sir, but you have left a legacy that will last forever. RIP Rajinder Goel," Ashwin tweeted.

The highest wicket taker in Ranji trophy cricket #RajinderGoel passes away, all I heard growing up was “what a fine left arm spinner Rajinder Goel was” I haven’t seen you bowl sir, but you have left a legacy that will last forever. #RipRajindergoel

— Ashwin (During Covid 19) (@ashwinravi99) June 22, 2020
 Mohammed Kaif

 

"Man with the most Ranji Trophy wickets & a domestic stalwart Rajinder Goel is no more. Picked 750 First-Class wickets yet never played for India. A dacoit wrote to him congratulating him on picking 600 Ranji Trophy wickets. Goel ji was happy & even replied to him #RIP sir," Kaif tweeted.

Man with the most Ranji Trophy wickets & a domestic stalwart Rajinder Goel is no more. Picked 750 First-Class wickets yet never played for India. A dacoit wrote to him congratulating him on picking 600 Ranji Trophy wickets. Goel ji was happy & even replied to him #RIP sir pic.twitter.com/m3cXcBIX8F

Mohammad Kaif (@MohammadKaif) June 21, 2020

Harbhajan Singh 

Very sad news Rajinder Goel ji is no more #RipRajindergoel ji 

— Harbhajan Turbanator (@harbhajan_singh) June 21, 2020
 

Ravi Shastri

RIP #RajinderGoel ji. Master of his craft. Killer line & length in our terrain. Humility personified. Condolences to the entire family  pic.twitter.com/C3YJNPob1e

Ravi Shastri (@RaviShastriOfc) June 21, 2020

Sachin Tendulkar

Saddened to hear about the passing away of Rajinder Goel ji! He was a stalwart of Indian Domestic Cricket picking up more than 600 wickets in the Ranji Trophy.

May his soul Rest in Peace and my heartfelt condolences to his near and dear ones.  pic.twitter.com/hqDoSsoL5y

Sachin Tendulkar (@sachin_rt) June 22, 2020
Anil Kumble

Deeply saddened at the passing away of Rajinder Goel. One of the strong pillars of our domestic cricket. Served the game meritoriously despite an India call. My condolences to his family.

— Anil Kumble (@anilkumble1074) June 22, 2020


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