ICC mace to be handed to Andrew Strauss

London: India`s nearly 20-month reign as world number one Test side will formally come to an end when England captain Andrew Strauss is handed the ICC Mace after the end of the fourth and final Test of the series.

Strauss will receive the ICC Mace in recognition of England`s new status as the world`s leading Test team.

The mace will not be presented at The Oval, the venue of the fourth match beginning on April 18, to avoid a clash between Reliance and nPower, who are sponsoring the Test series.

The mace is plated in silver and gold and is valued at around 30,000 pound sterling.

An ICC spokesman said, according to the newspaper, that a ceremony is likely to be arranged for the day after the end of the series.

The mace was last presented to Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni in New Delhi in December 2009 after they had beaten Sri Lanka to end South Africa`s brief spell at the top of the Test rankings.

England became the world number one Test side after defeating India in three Tests in a row in their four-match series.

The Reliance ICC Test Championship Mace was commissioned from the British jewellers Asprey and Garrard in May 2001 and it was first presented to Australia`s Ricky Ponting in July 2003.


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