India news September 20, 2013

Former BCCI secretary Jaywant Lele dies

ESPNcricinfo staff

Jaywant Lele, the former BCCI secretary, has died of a heart attack aged 75 in Baroda on Thursday. Lele took over the post in 1996 and it was during his tenure when the match-fixing scandal broke out in 2000.

In that period, the board first set up the Justice Chandrachud Commission to probe the match-fixing charges and then asked the CBI to step in after the former South African captain Hansie Cronje admitted to fixing. The investigation led to life bans on the former India captain Mohammad Azharuddin and batsman Ajay Sharma.

Lele lost his post as secretary to Niranjan Shah during the 2001 board elections. He was gearing up for a return to cricket administration in the forthcoming Baroda Cricket Association (BCA).

A former engineer with Sarabhai Chemicals, Lele became the honorary secretary of the BCA in 1969. In 2003, he was expelled from the BCA, along with two other administrators, for alleged financial irregularities and administrative lapses.

The outspoken Lele was never short of a colourful quote. Before India's tour of Australia in 1999-2000, a journalist overheard a private conversation in which Lele had predicted that India would lose 3-0. India did lose 3-0. Two years ago, he penned a memoir titled I Was There - Memoirs of a Cricket Administrator.

Lele was also a qualified umpire.

While BCCI president N Srinivasan stated he was "shocked to hear the sad demise" of Lele, Sachin Tendulkar said he will miss Lele. "He always had wonderful words of encouragement for me and genuinely wished well for me," Tendulkar told Mid-Day. "He was a wonderful person and a well-wisher of mine. I can never forget the interactions we have had over the years. I will miss him."

Malcolm Speed, the former chief executive of Cricket Australia and the ICC, said that Lele was "energetic and reliable". "I thoroughly enjoyed working with him when I was the chief executive of Cricket Australia. He would always make sure that the relationships between various cricket boards remained cordial," Speed said. "There are so many special memories that I have of him. He was a lively and colourful character who would ensure that he will be fondly remembered as a cricket administrator and a person. I am deeply saddened by his untimely passing away."

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  • Dummy4 on September 20, 2013, 16:35 GMT

    @subnys, pl read the article carefully. "Before India's tour of Australia in 1999-2000, a journalist overheard a private conversation in which Lele had predicted that India would lose 3-0. India did lose 3-0.".... it as private conversation that was leaked to public. And if selection committee, rather any committee starts listening to secretary, the roles should be officially reversed. I am neither fan nor hater of Mr. Lele but let us be fair while passing out judgments.

  • Parag on September 20, 2013, 10:23 GMT

    @Amogh Mathure, A secretary can have his personal opinion. I do agree with that. But a personal opinion should be made only when you are sitting among friends and not when the microphones are on. Secondly if I were to be in his place and if I had felt that way then I would have made the selection committee know about it rather than the media.

  • Dummy4 on September 20, 2013, 7:22 GMT

    @vatsap, I second what has been said in the article & also by Srinivas Ravichandiran. It was 1999-00 series that he had referred to. In fact, in 2003 he was not board secretary.

    @subyns, do you mean that a secretary should not have personal opinion? Moreover, it was his personal opinion that was escalated by media. He did not issue any official statement to this extent. So whats wrong?

  • Dummy4 on September 20, 2013, 6:23 GMT

    @Vatsap - Lele had predicted that India would lose the series in Autralia in 1999, with Tendulkar as captain and they did lose 3-0.In fact in the whole of 1999 tour of Australia , India managed to win only one ODI against Pakistan in the tri-series. You can google and check the fact.

  • Rajkumar on September 20, 2013, 5:59 GMT

    in many ways this report epitomizes current Indian cricket administration.75 year old and once expelled for alleged financial irregularities he was planning to make a come back to BCCI mainstream(?).The name Lele reminds us of his infamous prediction just before India was about to leave for Australia in 1999.("we will be wiped out 3-0")...Anyway may his soul rest in peace....just stating some facts

  • Parag on September 20, 2013, 5:51 GMT

    I am no fan of Lele. I would rather not speak bad about him especially after his demise. But I remember his statements as a secretary during his tenure.

    I mean how can anyone explain a secretarial statement like, "Indian contingent to Australia (tour of 1999) is no good at all and will lose all the matches".

  • SRIVATSAN on September 20, 2013, 5:40 GMT

    Lele had predicted India would lose 4-0 for the 2003-04 Australia series and Ganguly and team proved that wrong.

  • Dummy4 on September 20, 2013, 4:29 GMT

    its a great loss to Indian Cricket. One of the finest administrator i have seen and very nice gentlemen. Condolences to the bereaved family.

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