VB Chandrasekhar gave back to the game in great measure

Updated: Aug 16, 2019, 10:32 IST | V Ramnarayan

In his prime, he matched his opening partner K Srikkanth stroke for stroke, sometimes even surpassing Cheeka in aggression and daring

VB Chandrasekhar gave back to the game in great measure
VB Chandrasekhar

Chennai: The news of the death of VB Chandrasekhar, former Tamil Nadu and Goa opening batsman, national selector and charismatic coach in domestic cricket, especially of young cricketers, comes as a rude shock to cricketers and cricket lovers of Chennai, whom he entertained with his swashbuckling batting in the 1980s and nineties.

Coming from an affluent background — with his father, the late Mr Biksheswaran a successful lawyer — VB gave back to the game in great measure through his state-of-the-art cricket academy VB's Nest, and elsewhere. In his prime, he matched his opening partner K Srikkanth stroke for stroke, sometimes even surpassing Cheeka in aggression and daring.

A memorable example was his second innings, match-winning hundred in the Irani Cup tie at Chepauk in 1988, incidentally the fastest hundred in the history of first-class cricket in India. VB would have completed 58 next week on August 21. In his most recent avatar as owner of VB Kanchi Veerans, a team in the 20-over Tamil Nadu Premier League, he focussed on promoting young players even at the cost of team success in the short run, such was his concern for grooming burgeoning talent.

An urbane, articulate man who had the makings of an excellent TV commentator, VB had in the recent past shown signs of being drawn to spirituality and was proud of his two daughters who are making a mark as a vocalist duo on the Carnatic music stage. I was many years his senior as a player, but enjoyed playing against him in the competitive TNCA league for some seven seasons at the end of my career. End of a colourful, exciting career as cricketer, coach and administrator. VB will be truly missed.

Chennai-based V Ramnarayan is a former Hyderabad Ranji Trophy and South Zone off-spinner

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