Who is Rajinder Goel?
Rajinder Goel was a cricketer who holds the record for most wickets in Ranji Trophy, India’s premier first class competition, despite which he was never selected to play for India. A left arm spinner, he represented Patiala, Southern Punjab, Delhi and Haryana in domestic cricket.
The son of an assistant station master in the Indian Railways, Goel came up through the Vaish school and college in Rohtak. His first major success was for North Zone schools in 1957 when he took four wickets against West Zone in the final of the All-India schools tournament and was declared the best bowler of the competition. He made his Ranji debut in the next season. Goel credits his early success to his teacher and coach Kishan Dayal. He started his first-class career with Patiala, which then evolved into the Southern Punjab team. He moved to Delhi in 1963 and Haryana ten years later.
BCCI president Sourav Ganguly, India head coach Ravi Shastri and a host of Indian cricketers paid tribute to left-arm spin great Rajinder Goel, who passed away at 77 after battling a long-term illness.
Mourning the demise, former India cricketer Ravi Shastri tweeted, Master of his craft. Killer line & length in our terrain. Humility personified.”
Recalling the fact that Rajinder Goel did not play for India despite taking 750 first-class wickets, Virender Sehwag tweeted out the Indian team’s loss to have missed out on his services.
Sourav Ganguly also joined the cricket fans in mourning the death of Rajinder Goel terming him a “giant of domestic cricket”.