Mumbai's ex-Test player Madhav Apte's innings ends

Mid-Day Infomedia Ltd

Former Mumbai cricket captain, Test batsman and sheriff of Mumbai, Madhav Apte passed away this morning, a few days shy of his 87th birthday which he would have celebrated on October 5. Apte played seven Tests for India in the early 1950s which included a highly successful West Indies tour in 1953 when he was part of the first Indian Test side to tour the Caribbean (under Vijay Hazare). He scored 460 runs in the five-Test series and never played Test cricket again.

That he didn't play longer for his country remains one of the biggest mysteries in Indian cricket. His late brother Arvind Apte also played for India. Continuing his highly successful first-class cricket journey for Mumbai which ended in the late 1960s, Apte also made a name for himself as an industrialist, who never missed out on a chance to play the Kanga League in Mumbai for his club Jolly Cricketers. Apte played the Kanga League ever since its inception in 1948 to 2002.

Madhav Apte
Madhav Apte

A few years ago, Apte wrote his autobiography, As Luck Would Have It. Despite handed a bad deal in Test cricket, Apte took things in his stride and never carried a grudge. He always felt honoured to be part of the great willow game.

He genial nature made him a much-loved member of Mumbai's cricket fraternity. Never did he refuse an invitation to grace a cricket event if in town no matter how small and low profile it was.

As president of the Cricket Club of India, it was he who supported the decision to give batting icon Sachin Tendulkar to be a playing member of the prestigious club. He first saw Tendulkar bat in a club game. Madhav Apte was a cricket giant with a golden heart.

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