Mumbai: Former BCCI President and 2-time national selector Raj Singh Dungarpur passed away on Saturday following protracted illness. He was 73.
Affectionately called as `Rajbhai` in the cricket fraternity, Dungarpur was suffering from Alzheimer`s disease.
A bachelor, Raj Singh was the youngest son of Maharawal Lakshman Singhji, the ruler of Dungarpur.
He played first class cricket for Rajasthan as a fast-medium bowler between 1955-56 and 1970-71.
After retirement he moved into administration, managing several overseas tours.
Dungarpur was the manager of the World Cup winning team in 1983. He was the national selector when master blaster Sachin Tendulkar was picked for the Indian squad in 1989.
His last high-profile BCCI assignment was in 2006 when he was named the manager for the Indian cricket team’s tour of Pakistan.
He was also president of the Cricket Club of India for 13 years before he took ill last year.
The funeral will be held in Dungarpur tomorrow, according to sources close to him.
Born on December 19, 1935, as a gangling bowler, he captured 206 wickets in 86 matches and rubbed shoulders with stalwarts like Vijay Manjrekar, Hanumant Singh and Salim Durrani. But he never played for the country in Tests.
He studied at the Daly College in Indore and got close to former India skipper C K Nayudu whom he held in very high esteem till his death.
His elder brothers - Jaisinghji and Mahipalsinghji - are living in Rajasthan.
Dungarpur was also a close friend of melody queen Lata Mangeshkar.
Dungarpur managed the Indian teams on its tours of England in 1982, 1986 and was the manager of the squad that toured Pakistan in 1984 85 and 2005-06.
It was Dungarpur who was instrumental in amending the rules of the CCI to allow Sachin Tendulkar use its dressing room as a 14-year-old and smoothen things for the champion batsman very early in his glittering career.
He headed the selection panel that chose Tendulkar in the team captained by Krish Srikkanth for the tour to Pakistan in 1989-90.
It was also a selection panel with Dungarpur at its helm that elevated Mohammed Azharuddin as the captain of the Indian team and paved the way for what he later termed as the "Team of the Nineties" which included Tendulkar and Anil Kumble, among others.
"Mian, captaan banoage," were the famous words he uttered to Azharuddin before making the Hyderabad stylist the captain as replacement for the out-of-form Srikkanth in 1989-90 when India toured New Zealand.
As the BCCI President, he was always available to give his views on any development when contacted by media persons.