Rajinder Goel, Legendary Spinner Who Never Got A National Call, No More

 - Sakshi Post

Legendary Indian left-arm spinner Rajinder Goel died on Sunday after battling age-related illnesses. Rajinder was 77 and is survived by his wife and son Nitin Goel. He passed away at his residence in Kolkata. Rajinder Goel never played for India but was considered as a fine left-arm spinner who played during the era of Bishan Singh Bedi.

Goel played 157 first-class matches, most for Haryana, and finished with 750 wickets. Goel started his career in his teens and had taken a staggering 750 first-class wickets from 157 matches in his first-class career that lasted for more than 25 years. He played against the late Vijay Manjrekar and also against his son Sanjay.

Goel stopped playing in his early 40s but remained involved with the game after his retirement as well. Rajinder Goel holds the record for most wickets taken in Ranji Trophy as he scalped 637, 107 more than S Venkataraghavan who is second on the list. Goel made his debut in the 1957-58 season. In 2017, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) honoured Rajinder Goel with the CK Nayudu Lifetime Achievement Award.

Goel was born on September 20, 1942, to an assistant station master in Haryana. At 16, he was considered as the best bowler of the All India Schools tournament after he helped North Zone won the title. Rajinder Goel went on to serve as the chairman of BCCI's national junior selection committee and the chairman of the Haryana selection committee.

Former BCCI president Ranbir Singh Mahendra said that “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.”

Rajneesh Gupta wrote on his Twitter, "Rajinder Goel, who took most wickets (637), most 5-wicket hauls (53) and 10-wicket match hauls (17) in the Ranji Trophy has passed away. He was one of the most deserving players who never represented India in an 'official' Test."

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