Noted cricket writer, historian and statistician Dr Vasant Naik passed away on September 8 at his home in England. A treasure trove of cricketing anecdotes and information, he was 82.
Besides writing a number of articles in newspapers and magazines, he penned over 35 books on cricket and other subjects, in English and Marathi, including History of World Cricket.
He was a close friend of legendary Indian cricketer Vijay Hazare and co-authored all his eminently readable books -- My Story, Cricket Replayed and A Long Innings.
Apart from Hazare, he was also very close to many former Indian cricketers, particularly those from Mumbai, including Vijay Merchant.
He was founder member of the Association of Cricket Statisticians and Scorers of India (ACSSI) and also its first honorary secretary. He was instrumental in giving the body its form and assisted in its early development.
It was he who broke the news of the world record 664-run partnership between Sachin Tendulkar and Vinod Kambli in the prestigious inter-school Harris Shield cricket tournament, in Mumbai, way back in 1987-88. It remains the highest stand for any wicket in any class of world cricket and has found a special mention in the Wisden Cricketers' Almanac and Guinness Book of World Records.
Although an industrial physician by profession, his first love, nay passion, was the willow game. He was always meticulous in whatever he did, as a cricket writer, historian and statistician. He migrated to England in 1996. He leaves behind his wife, Indumati, and two sons, all of whom are settled in England.