Suresh Saraiya, a popular cricket commentator on All India Radio for four decades, died of a heart attack at a South Mumbai hospital on Wednesday evening. He was 76 and survived by daughter Neeta.

“He was very meticulous and well prepared. He would get excited one week before a Test match; cricket was his life.

He cried at breakfast time on the first day of the first Test between India and South Africa at Durban (in November 1992).

He said he never thought a person from Gujarat would have the privilege of starting the commentary in a first Test match between India and South Africa.

He was a good man,’’ said noted radio and television commentator Harsha Bhogle.

Saraiya was part of the commentary team for over 100 Tests in India and abroad apart from World Cups, ODIs and domestic tournaments in India.

Maiden stint

His maiden stint was during the India-Australia Test at the Brabourne Stadium (Mumbai) in 1969 while the final one was the West Indies game at the Wankhede Stadium in November 2011.

He retired as PRO of Central Bank of India.

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