India news June 5, 2013

Former Kerala captain Balan Pandit dies

ESPNcricinfo staff

Former Kerala captain and junior national selector M Balan Pandit has died in Ernakulam, Kerala on June 5, aged 86.

A wicketkeeper-batsman, Pandit began playing first-class cricket in 1946 and represented Kathiawar, Kerala and Travancore-Cochin. In a career spanning 46 first-class matches, Pandit scored 2,317 runs including five hundreds at an average of 29.70.

He was a wicketkeeper for Kathiawar in the match against Maharashtra, in December 1948, when Bhausaheb Nimbalkar scored an unbeaten 443 runs, the highest first-class score by an Indian batsman.

In a Ranji Trophy match in 1959 against Andhra, his 14th for Kerala, Pandit scored an unbeaten 262, which was the record individual score for Kerala before Sreekumar Nair hit a triple century against Services in 2007.

As a wicketkeeper, he completed 35 catches and three stumpings during his first-class career.

As an administrator, Pandit was a member of India's junior selection committee and was also the chairman of Kerala's selection committee. He also served as vice-president of Kerala Cricket Association.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • on June 7, 2013, 5:24 GMT

    Very sorry to learn of the passing away of Balan Pandit, a fine person. We had the pleasure of playing for the South Zone against New Zealand in 1956 at Bangalore. He was a very quite person, handled himself with dignity and respected by one and all.

  • MDSreedhar on June 6, 2013, 1:25 GMT

    Same feelings. I was always thinking that I must visit Balan Pandit, Prof. NDS from Trichur etc every time I make a visit to Kerala. Just feeling the pain for not doing so. Yes, He groomed me as well as Under 15 State, Under -19 along with my time greats - Ranganathan, K.C.Sathish, Rammohan, TP Ajith etc and then he was the manager for the U-19 South Zone team and in the match at against East Zone at Eden Gardens in 1982, he came and told me. Get atleast a 50 and do brilliant on the field - You know Hanumant is my close friend ( Hanumant Singh was the national selector) and told me that he will do the rest to push me into the U-19 Indian team. Unfortunately I failed. Many more such memories at Gandhinagar - National Schools, Universities, U-22, U-25 Interstate games...etc..Great Loss...I really wish I had visited him. Lesson for future. Rest In Peace Sir.

  • sportofpain on June 5, 2013, 16:18 GMT

    RIP Balan Pandit. I have fond memories of you Sir. You were the manager of the Kerala Under 15 team in 1979 and you took a particular fondness to me. You once told me 'I'll make you play for India". Haven't been in touch for over 30 years but I remember your kindness and encouragement when as a 12 year old I battled hard to save a game for Kerala against Hyderabad. I also remember the time when you batted in the nets (Swanson Cricket Club) when you were in your 50's - you punched one ball off the back foot and it crashed into the metal pole that held up the nets. A small tribute to a good man.

  • on June 7, 2013, 5:24 GMT

    Very sorry to learn of the passing away of Balan Pandit, a fine person. We had the pleasure of playing for the South Zone against New Zealand in 1956 at Bangalore. He was a very quite person, handled himself with dignity and respected by one and all.

  • MDSreedhar on June 6, 2013, 1:25 GMT

    Same feelings. I was always thinking that I must visit Balan Pandit, Prof. NDS from Trichur etc every time I make a visit to Kerala. Just feeling the pain for not doing so. Yes, He groomed me as well as Under 15 State, Under -19 along with my time greats - Ranganathan, K.C.Sathish, Rammohan, TP Ajith etc and then he was the manager for the U-19 South Zone team and in the match at against East Zone at Eden Gardens in 1982, he came and told me. Get atleast a 50 and do brilliant on the field - You know Hanumant is my close friend ( Hanumant Singh was the national selector) and told me that he will do the rest to push me into the U-19 Indian team. Unfortunately I failed. Many more such memories at Gandhinagar - National Schools, Universities, U-22, U-25 Interstate games...etc..Great Loss...I really wish I had visited him. Lesson for future. Rest In Peace Sir.

  • sportofpain on June 5, 2013, 16:18 GMT

    RIP Balan Pandit. I have fond memories of you Sir. You were the manager of the Kerala Under 15 team in 1979 and you took a particular fondness to me. You once told me 'I'll make you play for India". Haven't been in touch for over 30 years but I remember your kindness and encouragement when as a 12 year old I battled hard to save a game for Kerala against Hyderabad. I also remember the time when you batted in the nets (Swanson Cricket Club) when you were in your 50's - you punched one ball off the back foot and it crashed into the metal pole that held up the nets. A small tribute to a good man.

  • sportofpain on June 5, 2013, 16:18 GMT

    RIP Balan Pandit. I have fond memories of you Sir. You were the manager of the Kerala Under 15 team in 1979 and you took a particular fondness to me. You once told me 'I'll make you play for India". Haven't been in touch for over 30 years but I remember your kindness and encouragement when as a 12 year old I battled hard to save a game for Kerala against Hyderabad. I also remember the time when you batted in the nets (Swanson Cricket Club) when you were in your 50's - you punched one ball off the back foot and it crashed into the metal pole that held up the nets. A small tribute to a good man.

  • MDSreedhar on June 6, 2013, 1:25 GMT

    Same feelings. I was always thinking that I must visit Balan Pandit, Prof. NDS from Trichur etc every time I make a visit to Kerala. Just feeling the pain for not doing so. Yes, He groomed me as well as Under 15 State, Under -19 along with my time greats - Ranganathan, K.C.Sathish, Rammohan, TP Ajith etc and then he was the manager for the U-19 South Zone team and in the match at against East Zone at Eden Gardens in 1982, he came and told me. Get atleast a 50 and do brilliant on the field - You know Hanumant is my close friend ( Hanumant Singh was the national selector) and told me that he will do the rest to push me into the U-19 Indian team. Unfortunately I failed. Many more such memories at Gandhinagar - National Schools, Universities, U-22, U-25 Interstate games...etc..Great Loss...I really wish I had visited him. Lesson for future. Rest In Peace Sir.

  • on June 7, 2013, 5:24 GMT

    Very sorry to learn of the passing away of Balan Pandit, a fine person. We had the pleasure of playing for the South Zone against New Zealand in 1956 at Bangalore. He was a very quite person, handled himself with dignity and respected by one and all.