Cricket has testified various troubles on and off the field over the years, resulting in damage to the sport. In some of the cases, the teams involved went so far as to cancel or abrupt the tours. Wars between countries, weather issues, security concerns, and financial issues have generally been the causes. The International tours in troubled conditions were adjusted accordingly in most instances and postponed to a safer period, but some faced abandonment.
South Africa’s apartheid policies banned the national team from cricketing for almost 21 years (1970-1991). On several occasions, the countries that came in support of South Africa also faced the consequences. Springboks, South Africa’s rugby team, toured New Zealand for three Rugby Tests in the second half of 1981. This caused a lot of controversy in New Zealand that led to protests, but the series continued despite the Prime Minister ‘s request to invite the Springboks from the NZ Rugby Union.
The South African Apartheid that had been in South Africa ‘s politics was a cause of the 1980s protests against the New Zealand Springbok tour. This Apartheid segregated races into blacks and whites. An example of the translation into the sport of this South African racism was in 1921 when the Springboks defeated the New Zealand Maori XV in Napier.
A South African journalist reported back to South Africa that it was “Hard enough to play officially named New Zealand natives, but to see thousands of Europeans cheering frankly on bands of coloured men to beat members of our own race was too much for the frankly disgusted Springboks.” Segregation meant that key players, such as the Maori man George Nepia, were left behind. Later in 1960, before the All blacks went on tour to South Africa, a petition called ‘no Maori no tour’ was established. However, 150,000 people signed, the tour went ahead regardless.
This Apartheid created problems with the South African rugby team playing in New Zealand and was one of the causes of protests on the Anti-Springbok tour.
The New Zealand Cricket team, on the other hand, was due to visit West Indies in early 1982. Yet West Indies were hesitant to host the Blackcaps after Springboks tour to New Zealand. Though the Cricket Council of New Zealand dissociated itself from the Rugby tour, the situation in New Zealand also had an impact on Rugby as the sport ‘s popularity fell over the next few years before the 1987 Rugby World Cup that they hosted and won jointly.