Ramakant Achrekar, coach of legendary Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar, passed away in Mumbai on Wednesday at the age of 87. It was Achrekar who helped the Master Blaster to enhance his skills during initial days as a batsman. He also awarded Dronacharya award and Padma Shri award.
Every now and then, Sachin went to seek blessings from his childhood coach. Not long ago, he, along with childhood friend Vinod Kambli, had visited Achrekar’s residence to seek his blessings ahead of the start of a camp in Mumbai.
On the occasion of Teacher’s Day last year, Tendulkar never failed to express gratitude towards the man who made him the cricketer he went on to become. He thanked his coach for all the teachings.
Every year during Teacher’s Day, Sachin use to go and meet his old coach and pay his respects. In 1990, Achrekar was honoured with the Dronacharya Award for Outstanding coaches in Sports and Games. He was honored with one of the country’s highest civilian award, the Padma Shri in 2010.
In the same year, the coach was honoured the “Lifetime Achievement” award by the Sports Illustrated by Gary Kirsten.
The BCCI expresses its deepest sympathy on the passing of Dronacharya award-winning guru Shri Ramakant Achrekar. Not only did he produce great cricketers, but also trained them to be fine human beings. His contribution to Indian Cricket has been immense. pic.twitter.com/mK0nQODo6b
— BCCI (@BCCI) January 2, 2019
Last year on Teacher’s Day, Sachin revealed how he was disciplined by Achrekar and that moment put his career on the right track. Young Tendulkar was a prankster and he needed constant monitoring.
— Sachin Tendulkar (@sachin_rt) September 5, 2017
Master Blaster e recalled an incident where his revered coach scolded him in front of a whole lot of people for enjoying a match at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai instead of playing a match elsewhere.
Posting a video on Twitter, Tendulkar said, “Back in my school days, I used to play only for the junior team and our senior team was playing the Harris Shield finals at the Wankhede Stadium. And our coach Ramakant Achrekar sir had organised a practice match for me. He had told me to go there after school and bat at number four. He said he had spoken to the captain and you would not need to field. That used to be my training. That was important because you needed to figure out your game there and figure out how to score runs in the middle.”
Achrekar used to take Sachin Tendulkar to different matches across Mumbai on his scooter. The coach’s dedication and foresight helped India unearth a gem who went on to serve the country for a quarter of a century.