The Indian cricket board on Sunday approved a two-Test series against West Indies in November, but maintained silence on the South African tour a month later, setting the stage for Sachin Tendulkar to play his 200th Test match before home fans.
As reported by HT on Saturday, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) working committee decided to host West Indies, with Kolkata and Mumbai likely to be the venues.
That 40-year-old Tendulkar, now on a record 198 Tests, can play the milestone 200th game in India added to the speculation that he might quit Test cricket subsequently.
Tendulkar has already retired from Twenty20 internationals and One-day cricket.
While the BCCI approved next year’s New Zealand tour and a five-Test England series, there was no mention of the big South Africa tour in December announced two months ago.
The cash-rich BCCI has refused to accept Cricket South Africa’s (CSA’s) initial schedule, which included three Tests and seven ODIs.
The BCCI had suggested two Tests and three ODIs. It is not clear if CSA has agreed to it.
If India’s tour to South Africa does not happen, it could cause an upheaval in the top echelons of the game.
The Indian cricket board is also reportedly miffed at the appointment of former International Cricket Council (ICC) chief Haroon Lorgat as CSA’s CEO.
The BCCI has reportedly put together the West Indies series to bolster its coffers.
“We have sent a proposal to the West Indies Cricket Board in this regard. We are hopeful of working out the modalities for the series,” a top BCCI official was quoted as saying.
He said the South Africa series was not discussed in the working committee meeting, chaired by interim chief Jagmohan Dalmiya.
BCCI president N Srinivasan, who stepped aside in the wake of the inquiry against his son-in-law Gurunath Meiyappan in the IPL spot-fixing scandal, was at the meeting in his capacity as the Tamil Nadu unit president.
The board decided to hold its annual general meeting in Chennai on September 29.