Ajit Agarkar is a former Indian fast bowler who played in the Indian national team alongside Javagal Srinath, Zaheer Khan, Ashish Nehra from 1998 to 2006. He has represented India in all formats i.e. ODI, tests, and Twenty 20 Internationals (T20Is). He is widely known for his steady run-up that helps in generating enough pace to trouble the batters with seam movements on both sides. Besides bowling, he was also a successful lower-order hard-hitting batter with plenty of shots under his belt.
Ajit Agarkar was born on Sunday, 4 December 1977 (age 44 years; as of 2021) in Bombay (now Mumbai), Maharashtra. His zodiac sign is Sagittarius. He was a batter in his childhood days, but when he was introduced to Ramakant Achrekar by his father, he switched to seam bowling. He made his first major appearance in cricket during an inter-school Giles Shield tournament for the under-16s team where he scored a triple century. Soon, he made his first Ranji Appearance in 1996/97. He made his ODI and Test debut in 1998. In 2006, he played India’s first T20I match ever against South Africa. He was involved in many historic wins for India which include a famous victory over Australia in their homeland in 2003 after twenty-two years. In 2013, he retired from international cricket. Post-retirement, he started working as a cricket analyst, the chairman of the Mumbai senior selection committee, and then the Indian National Team’s Selector.
Height (approx.): 5′ 6″
Weight (approx.): 65 kg
Hair Colour: Natural Black
Eye Colour: Bright Green
Family & Caste
Parents & Siblings
His father’s name is Balachandra Agarkar. His mother’s name is Meena Agarkar. He has one brother named Manik Agarkar.
Wife & Children
He is married to Fatima Ghadially on 9 February 2002. Fatima Ghadially is an Educationalist and a co-founder of the Agarkar Centre of Excellence (ACE).
He has one son named Raj Agarkar.
Ajit Agarkar resides in Ashok Tower, Shivaji Park at Narayan Pujari Nagar on the Worli Seaface in South Mumbai in Maharashtra.
Ajit Agarkar made his ODI debut on 1 April 1998 against Australia at Kochi Cricket Stadium (now Jawaharlal Nehru International Stadium) in Kerala.
He made his test debut on 7 October 1998 against Zimbabwe at Harare Sports Club (Zimbabwe).
He made his T20I debut on 1 December 2006 against South Africa at The Imperial Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg (South Africa).
- Most consecutive ducks (5) in Test cricket against Australia in Test cricket in the 1999-00 series Crictracker.com
- The fastest fifty by an Indian in ODI cricket of 21 balls against Zimbabwe at Saurashtra Cricket Association Stadium (Rajkot) on 14 December 2000 Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack
- First Indian to bag a wicket with his maiden delivery in T20I vs South Africa 2006-07
- Second fastest to take 50 wickets in ODIs in 23 matches after Ajantha Mendis (Sri Lanka) Circle Of Cricket
- Best bowling figures in lost ODI matches with 6 for 42 runs against Australia at MCG on 9 January 2004 Crictracker.com
- First player and the only Indian to score a century while batting at No. 8 in the 4th innings of a Test Match against England on 25 July 2002 at Lord’s Cricket Ground. Cricketcountry.com
- West Zone
- Warnes Warriors
- Delhi Daredevils (now Delhi Capitals) (IPL)
- Kolkata Knight Riders (IPL)
- India A
- India B
- India Blue
- India Legends
- India Seniors
- India Under-19
His first breakthrough performance came in the Harris Shield under-19 tournament where his batting impressed the cricket experts so much as he was being rated as the ‘next Sachin’.
Soon, there came a requirement of an allrounder in the Bombay Ranji team. Knowing this, Ajit started focussing on bowling, and in 1996/97, he got selected in the Bombay Ranji team for a match against Gujarat.
In the same year, he scored a century against Sri Lanka’s under-19 team, which was led by Kumar Sangakkara. Besides this, he also represented India’s U-17 team against England’s U-17. In 1998, he made his international debut against Australia in ODI in April and then against Zimbabwe in tests in October. The ODI match was the first match of the Pepsi Triangular Series where India scored 309 runs in the first inning. Australia in reply, had a century stand for the first wicket when Ajit Agarkar dismissed their opening batter, Adam Gilchrist. Gilchrist missed the line of the ball and ended with edging the ball towards slip where the captain Azharuddin was standing. Agarkar ended his bowling spell with 31 runs in five overs and one wicket.
One of his top international bowling spells came against Australia on 12 December 2003 at Adelaide Oval in the 2nd test match of the Border Gavaskar Trophy.
However, Ajit Agarkar being an ODI bowler was more successful than a Test bowler. He impressed the selectors in his very first international game, which prompted national selectors to give him one more chance to play in the next bilateral series which was against the Kiwis on 17 April 1998. On 25 July 2002, a test match was played between India and England at Lord’s. Ajit Agarkar scored a century and scripted his name on the honor’s board being the ninth Indian batter to score a hundred at Lord’s.
The same year, on 6 November, Ajit Agarkar scored 95 runs against West Indies coming at number three as a pinch hitter. Though, India lost the match by four wickets. In 26 test matches, he bowled in 46 innings and took 58 wickets with a bowling average of 47.32 runs per wicket. Interestingly, 30 out of those wickets came against Australia. The year 2003 was the most successful for him where he captured 16 wickets. 6 for 41 is his best bowling performance, which came against Australia at Adelaide in 2003-04. In all, he has bowled 809.3 overs and conceded 2745 runs with an economy of 3.39. Talking about his batting in the longest format, he scored 571 runs with an average of 16.79. He has played under the captaincy of Mohammad Azharuddin, Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, Rahul Dravid, and Virender Sehwag.
Besides tests, he also played 191 ODI games and took 288 wickets with a bowling average of 27.85 runs per wicket. He has exactly 100 maidens in ODI with an economy of 5.07. His best bowling is 6 for 42 which came against Australia on 9 January 2004 at Melbourne in a losing cause. He has taken two 5-wicket hauls and ten 10-wickets hauls. His most ODI wickets came against Sri Lanka (49) followed by Zimbabwe (45). U.A.E. is his second-most successful venue in terms of wickets taken in ODIs after India. The year 1998, is the most successful year where he has taken 58 wickets in 30 matches. In terms of batting, he has scored 1269 runs with an average and strike rate of 14.58 and 80.62% respectively.
- Batter- Viv Richards
- Bowlers: Kapil Dev, Ian Botham, Michael Holding, and Allan Donald
- Cricket Ground- Lord’s Cricket Ground
- Sports- Golf
- Food- Bori food
- Movie- Pele: Birth of a Legend
- His jersey number is 68 when he played for India.
While his IPL jersey number is 55.
- Ajit Agarkar had a very fascinating love story. He first saw Fatima in 1998 when his friend had brought her with him to his house. Fatima is the sister of his friend. Again during a 1999 Cricket World Cup in East Africa, Fatima came to see a match where Ajit was playing. There they fell in love with each other. However, Fatima being from a Muslim background, it was difficult to convince their parents, but soon they both succeeded to convince and in 2002, Agarkar and Fatima both tied a knot.
- Ajit Agarkar was performing splendidly with a bat. Due to this, once, Sachin Tendulkar gave his gloves to Ajit as a reward. He recalls that moment by saying that, Orissa Post
“Sachin gave me gloves. We were in the same school and he thought someone was performing well and so he gave me gloves. I didn’t know him much then. I did not use his pads, maybe I could have become a better batsman if I had used his pad.”
- Ajit Agarkar’s house is located in Mumbai. It is a three-bedroom hall of an area of 1,500-sq ft and is designed by Sandesh Prabhu. Talking about his house, he told, Housing.com
“Home is the place, where I can relax and unwind and spend time with my family and friends. It is my comfort zone and it totally uplifts my mood, no matter how tired I am. We have been living here for the past 10 years and Parel is well-connected and is in the heart of the city. Our extended families are in Dadar and Cuffe Parade and from Parel, it is easy to commute. All basic facilities are close by. We have plenty of options for dining and shopping, with Phoenix Mall and Kamala Mills in the vicinity.”
- When India’s former captain Sourav Ganguly became the BCCI chief, Agarkar remarked,
“Sourav is probably the captain I played most matches under. And we all know what kind of a leader he has been throughout his career. He played a lot of cricket, so I expect good things to happen under him. He’s a person with great clarity and knows what exactly he wants — he’s quite a character.”
- In an interview with a youtube channel, Ajit revealed that the century at Lords is like a dream come true for him. Out of all the players, he has played alongside, he considers Zaheer Khan as his best friend. Interestingly, he has a better bowling average and strike rate than Zaheer Khan and Javagal Srinath.