Sharmila Tagore loses battle with the BCCI

The Board of Control for Cricket in India maintains that the India-England series trophy will be dedicated to the Board’s first secretary Anthony De Mello, and not be renamed after Tiger Pataudi

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) clarified its stand regarding yesteryear actor Sharmila Tagore’s letter for renaming the upcoming India-England series after her late husband and cricketer Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi.

Tagore wrote to BCCI President N Srinivasan on November 2, “As you are aware, next week India-England test series begins. I am given to understand ECB (England and Wales Cricket Board) has already written to BCCI requesting to make the trophy official. You will recall my previous mail to you where I had mentioned our disappointment at the close of the test series at the Oval and had urged you to take the matter forward and formalise the trophy.”

Tagore claimed that she was assured her request would be taken forward. The correspondence between her and the BCCI had taken place almost a year ago, but after that there was no explanation or reply. The actor also questioned the delay in instituting the BCCI Annual Lecture in Tiger Pataudi’s name.”You had assured me that you have told the people concerned to take it forward. Please note that this correspondence is almost a year old. Now, since there is very little time before the start of the series, I am hoping you will act on this matter soon and inform me about your decision at your earliest,” she had added in the same letter.

Clarifying, the BCCI said that the India-England Test Series is played in the name of its first secretary, Anthony De Mello, since 1951 – recognising his contribution to Indian cricket. “In 2007, when Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) proposed the institution of the Pataudi Trophy for England-India series, the BCCI had clarified that the trophy is already named after Anthony De Mello,” said current secretary Sanjay Jagdale.

However, a little birdie told us that some members on the panel were in favour of calling it the Pataudi Trophy, but were not willing to have Tiger’s children or wife give away the cup. Last year, Tiger had been ignored on the dais where he was present to hand over the trophy to the winning captain.