Had the BCCI agreed to CSA's proposal, fans probably could have witnessed the retirements of two modern greats in the same series © Getty Images & IANS
Had the BCCI agreed to CSA’s proposal, fans probably could have witnessed the retirements of two modern greats in the same series © Getty Images & IANS

Johannesburg: Jan 9, 2014

 

Cricket South Africa (CSA) had reportedly proposed that India and South Africa play a five-Test series — two in India, three in South Africa — for the Gandhi-Mandela trophy, which never happened. This was revealed by Anand Vasu, managing editor of www.wisdenindia.com, who covered India’s eventual two-Tests and three-ODIs visit to the African nation.

 

According to Sport24, Vasu said that when CSA president Chris Nenzani and director Norman Arendse met Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) officials in Dubai days before the disputed tour was given the go-ahead, they suggested that South Africa take on India in two home Tests.

 

Vasu further said that CSA proposed that this would be followed by three Tests in South Africa, and the five Tests, as a complete series, could be played for the Gandhi-Mandela Trophy, adding that a CSA official told him that they got the proper clearances to use Nelson Mandela’s name and asked the BCCI for permission to use Gandhi’s name also.

 

However, Vasu quoted the official saying that they drew a blank when they tried to clarify things directly with the BCCI, adding that if the five-Test proposal had been accepted, the second Test in Mumbai would have been Sachin Tendulkar‘s last and the fifth Test at Newlands would have been Jacques Kallis‘s last, at home.

 

Vasu also said that with Mandela passing on, there would have been a weightiness to the series not quite matched by its official name, after producers of triple-refined sunflower oil, Sunfoil.