Rarely is a series between two nations called differently based on the host nation. But India-England Test series winners are awarded trophies based on the hosts.
The Pataudi Trophy, named after the Pataudi family which produced the father-son duo of Ifthikar Ali Khan Pataudi and Mansoor Ali Kahn Pataudi, is presented to the winner of the England-India Test series in England. This was instituted by the MCC in 2007 when India toured England to celebrate the 75th anniversary of India-England Test ties. The trophy was designed by Jocelyn Burton, a London Silversmith.
On the other hand, the Anthony De Mello Trophy is awarded to the winner of the Test series in India. This trophy was instituted in 1951 after Anthony De Mello, one of the founders of BCCI.
Despite the Pataudi family putting pressure on the BCCI to rename the trophy in India as well, the BCCI was adamant to stick to the naming that originated in 1951.
In response to the request from the Pataudi family, then BCCI secretary Sanjay Jagdale said in a statement, “India-England Test Series in India is played for the Anthony De Mello trophy instituted in 1951 in the name of the first secretary of the BCCI, recognising his contribution to Indian cricket."
BCCI official, Rajiv Shukla also commented on the letter from the Pataudi family, written by actress Sharmila Tagore. “The matter is in the domain of the BCCI president and BCCI working committee. They will have to look into several aspects before coming to any decision. I think the matter is under consideration,” Shukla had said in 2012.
Even when the MCC proposed to change the name to the Pataudi Trophy in 2007, BCCI had objected stating that the series was already named after Anthony De Mello.
The statement by Jagdale also stated the same, “In 2007, when MCC proposed the institution of Pataudi Trophy for England-India series, the BCCI had clarified that the trophy is already named after Anthony De Mello."
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BCCI's handling of the matter generated poor responses in India. Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi aka 'Tiger' Pataudi died in 2012 and Bishen Singh Bedi, who played under Tiger Pataudi, said that he has played in as many as six series between the teams and not once was it called the Anthony De Mello Trophy.
Tiger Pataudi scored 2793 runs in his Test career that included an unbeaten 203 against England at home in 1964. This, despite having lost an eye due to a road accident.
The Pataudi Trophy has been competed for three times so far - in 2007, 2011 and 2014. India won the inaugural trophy in 2007 and England won the remaining two in 2011 and 2014.
The series winners for the Tests starting tomorrow will, however, be given the Anthony De Mello Trophy as the series is in India.