Cricket: India's oldest Test player Madhav Mantri dies at 92

NEW DELHI (AFP) - Tributes were paid on Friday to Madhav Mantri, India's oldest surviving Test cricketer and a former manager of the national side, after he died overnight at the age of 92.

Mantri, who was an uncle of former Indian skipper Sunil Gavaskar, acted as a mentor to the likes of Sachin Tendulkar during a long career as a player, national selector and administrator.

"Very deeply saddened to hear of the death of Madhav Mantri. Gentleman, disciplinarian and wonderful old world manners always put cricket first," commentator Harsha Bhogle tweeted.

Ravichandran Ashwin, an off-spinner in the current Indian side, also said he was "very sad to hear about the passing away" of Mantri. "May you rest in peace, sir," he added on Twitter.

Mantri, who played four Tests between 1951 and 1955, was best known as a wicket-keeper. Although his international record was modest, he was a prolific run-scorer in the domestic Ranji trophy competition.

After retiring in 1968, he held a series of positions in the Indian board, including as manager of the side that toured England in 1990 - one of Tendulkar's first overseas tours.

He died in a hospital in Mumbai after a recent bout of ill health, reports said.

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