I've often thought the life story of black South African Basil D'Olivera would make a great movie and in the wake of the film about Nelson Mandela I think so more than ever.
Basil in his younger days Captained the non white South African criket side, but because of Apartheid wasn't allowed to play alongside or against white skinned players. However, such was his talent as a talented Batsman/bowler, much respected broadcaster John Arlott persuaded him to try his luck in England and in 1960 ended up playing for county side Worcestershire.
Then in 1966 he played for England and made a huge impact, establishing himself as a team regular. This created a problem 2 years later, England had planned to tour and play against South Africa. In the original squad selection Basil wasn't pick, causing huge outrage among the British media. However, after an injury to bowler Tom Cartright, Basil was picked in his place. This caused South African Prime Minister Vorster to coment This is not the team of the M.C.C(England) but the Anti Apartheid movement. South Africa wouldn't allow Basil, or Dolly as he was known, to play in their Country and England couldn't back down. This was the begining of an International sporting boycott of South Africa that would go on for years........................................................
While many South African players earned their living in England, some like Barry Richard's didn't want to play for anyone else at international level, but others like Alan Lamb and Graham Hick took out British Nationality and played for England. Basil himself continued to play for England until his early 40s
"The only things you regret are the things you didn't do.” - Michael Curtiz
Films, TV shows, and books of the 'modern' era
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