Dronacharya awardee cricket coach Ramakant Achrekar, who is credited with shaping the early career of Sachin Tendulkar, died on Wednesday. He was 87 and a family member told PTI that he passed away owing to old-age related ailments. "He (Archrekar Sir) is no more with us. He passed away this evening," his kin Rashmi Dalvi told PTI over phone.
Best known for being the childhood coach of Tendulkar, who has always acknowledged him as his mentor, Achrekar was also a Padma Shri awardee.
Besides Tendulkar, he also coached some prominent players such as Vinod Kambli, Pravin Amre, Sameer Dighe and Balwinder Singh Sandhu.
Tendulkar has always credited Ramakant Achrekar for every milestone that he ever reached on the cricket field.
Ramakant Achrekar's playing career wasn't as profound as his considerably long stint as coach. Achrekar had started playing cricket in 1943, and had only played one first-class match, for the all-India State Bank against Hyderabad.
Achrekar was popular for running a coaching centre - Kamath Memorial Cricket Club - in Mumbai's Shivaji Park. Of late, his daughter Kalpana Murkar and son-in-law Deepak Murkar had been running the academy, which had over three decade ago given Sachin Tendulkar the foundation to make an outstanding cricketing career.