Which cricketer spent the most years in international oblivion between two consecutive Tests? (01 March 2002)
Athanasios John Traicos might have been born to Greek parents in Egypt, but he proved good enough to play as the only specialist spinner in the powerful 1970 South African side. As an off-spinner in the Ali Bacher-led team, Traicos played in South Africa's last three Tests against Australia before they were banned for their governmentís apartheid policies.
His last Test against Ian Chappell's Australia did not see him cover himself in glory. Despite bowling 17 overs, he could not claim a single wicket. South Africa, though, swept the home series 4-0, before their Boardís objection to the inclusion of Cape-coloured Basil D'Oliveira in the England team, their upcoming opponents, saw them being banished to the international wilderness.
Traicos, however, was determined to continue his cricketing career. He moved on to Zimbabwe and resumed his international career playing for their one-day side. After appearing in three World Cups, Traicos finally got his fourth Test cap at the ripe age of 45. He walked out as a Zimbabwean Test player in his new teamís inaugural Test against India at Harare exactly 22 years and 222 days after his last Test at Port Elizabeth. This saw him shatter Englishman George Gunnís previous record of spending 17 years and 316 days in the wilderness between two consecutive Tests.
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