The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and Cricket South Africa (CSA) have announced that all future bilateral series between the two nations will be named 'The Mahatma Gandhi-Nelson Mandela Series '.
Going forward, the Test series between the respective countries will be played for the ‘Freedom Trophy’ which is dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela.
BCCI president, Jagmohan Dalmiya, said: "The struggle for freedom has been the common thread between our countries. Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela liberated our nations with non-violence and non-co-operation as their weapons which have inspired the world, to adopt and achieve their goals in a peaceful manner. We dedicate this trophy to Mahatma and Madiba, the guiding souls of our nations."
Honorary Secretary, Anurag Thakur, said: "The Test Series has been christened as the 'Freedom Trophy'. Freedom for which Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela sacrificed their lives and thereby allowed a nation to be born free from years of bondage and suppression.
"BCCI, on behalf of every citizen of our country is able to pay tribute to these great leaders by naming the series after them and appeal to each and every citizen of our country to imbibe their ideals and follow the path advised by them," he added.
CSA president, Chris Nenzani, said "The revered names of Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela leave us with a huge responsibility to live up to the legacies they have left us. Above all else they stood for doing the right thing and persevered at great personal cost to achieve freedom for their country regardless of how long it took them.
CSA Chief Executive, Haroon Lorgat, said: "For the people of both our countries there is no greater duty than to uphold the ideals of both Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela. As cricket loving people we must fight hard to win on the field of play but never forget to do battle in the spirit of these two great men.
"Naming all future bilateral series between our two countries after Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela is eternal news for our people and cricketers and I would like to thank the Nelson Mandela Foundation for their support," concluded Lorgat.
The tour includes three Twenty20 Internationals, five One-day Internationals and four Test matches.
Image: Indian Test team captain Virat Kohli and South Africa's AB de Villiers