FILE PHOTO: Jaywant Lele (L), secretary of the Board of Cricket Control in India, Ajit Wadekar (C), chairman selection committee, and Madan Lal (R) attend a meeting of cricket players selectors in Bombay 15 March 1999. (SEBASTIAN D’SOUZA/AFP/Getty Images)
A pall of gloom descended on BCCI as its former secretary Jaywant Lele passed away after suffering a heart attack in Baroda on Thursday.
The soft-spoken Lele took charge as BCCI secretary in 1996, and was at the helm when the match-fixing scandal broke out in 2000.
It may be worth recalling that Lele had lost his BCCI secretary post to Niranjan Shah in the 2001 board elections. It is learnt that he was fine-tuning comeback plans to cricket administration in the forthcoming Baroda Cricket Association (BCA) elections.
A former engineer with Sarabhai Chemicals, Lele became the honorary secretary of the Baroda Cricket Association in 1969.
However, in 2003 he was banished from the Baroda Cricket Association for alleged financial irregularities and administrative lapses.
Lele was also a qualified umpire.
Only recently the former BCCI secretary had taken a swipe at board president N Srinivasan, terming him ‘equally guilty’ in the IPL spot-fixing controversy.
Lele was famously remembered for his infamous prediction before India’s 1999-2000 tour of Australia, when he said that the Sachin Tendukar led side would lose the series 3-0. India indeed lost that series 3-0.