Solanki is a classical strokemaker who earned England limited-over honours but could not quite establish himself at international level.
Born in India but raised in Wolverhampton, Solanki made his county debut at 16 in 1992 for Worcestershire and was selected for the England Under-18 tour to South Africa in 1992-93 and the U19 trip to the West Indies the following winter.
Solanki's breakthrough season was 1999 when 1,339 runs made him the highest English run-scorer and his progress through the England ranks continued as he was selected for two A tours.
His senior international debut came in a one-day international against South Africa at Bloemfontein in early 2000.
He fell out of favour after eight matches, but was recalled following the World Cup in 2003 and hit a majestic 106 in the second match of the NatWest Series versus South Africa when he shared an England ODI record opening partnership of 200.
Solanki was dropped again after the tour of Bangladesh, but came back to the attention of the selectors in 2004 with a run of domestic scores that culminated centuries in the Cheltenham & Gloucester Trophy semi-final and final.
On his England return, during the NatWest Challenge with India, he scored 52 and 48 and played in the hosts’ run to the Champions Trophy final.
Having inherited the Worcestershire captaincy from Ben Smith, Solanki struck a superb century against Zimbabwe and remained in England's limited-overs plans in 2005 when he played in their first Twenty20 international.
A lean run with the bat in 2006 saw Solanki lose his ODI place, but he won his second and third T20 caps at the 2007 World Twenty20 as wicketkeeper due to Matt Prior's injury.
With his England career seemingly over, Solanki shone for Worcestershire not least with a career-best 270 against Gloucestershire during 2008.
In early 2009 he became chairman of the Professional Cricketers' Association and, having relinquished the Worcestershire captaincy late the following season, continued to be an important member of their batting line-up.
Solanki ended a 20-year association with Worcestershire by joining Surrey ahead of the 2013 season.