Rumours of a rebel West Indies cricket tour of South Africa were rife when West Indies Cricket Board of Control (WICBC) president Alan Rae made his way to the Terra Nova Hotel in January 1983 for a pre-Shell Shield luncheon.
The Guyana fast-bowler Colin Croft had left for the racist republic just days before and Rae was concerned that Jamaica's Shell Shield captain, Lawrence Rowe, would join him.
In a 1999 interview with the Jamaica Observer, Rae said he passed a note to Rowe before addressing the function.
"I wrote, 'I have to make a speech before this luncheon is finished. Is it true you're going to South Africa?' He wrote at the bottom of the paper that, 'I'm staying', and I got up and praised him to the highest heavens," Rae recalled.
Rowe led a West Indies squad to South Africa that month for a series of four-day and one-day matches that rattled international sports. To mark the 30th anniversary of the controversial trip by a black cricket team to the land of Apartheid, CNN have produced a documentary on it.
The film features interviews with some of the leading players including Croft and former South African Cricket Union president Joe Pamensky.
Barbadian all-rounder Franklyn Stephenson and wicketkeeper David Murray are also featured. Pamensky, who organised the tour with South African cricket supremo Dr Ali Bacher, tells CNN that the West Indian tour had a positive impact on race relations in South Africa.
Breakaway teams from England and Sri Lanka had played in South Africa prior to the West Indians. The English team included top players like batsman Graham Gooch and offspinner John Emburey.
Several members of the West Indies squad had played Tests for the Caribbean team, though some were past their best. Among them were Rowe and Guyanese batsman Alvin Kallicharran, the boy wonders of the early 1970s.
Croft, Murray, fellow Barbadians Collis King and Sylvester Clarke, Jamaicans Horace Chang and Everton Mattis, Bernard Julien of Trinidad and Tobago and the Leeward Islands spinner Derick Parry had also worn West Indies colours.
Stephenson and another Barbadian, fast-bowler Ezra Mosley, were competitive players in the Shell Shield. The players were paid between US$100,000 to $120,000 for the tour.
Rae, who was elected WICBC president in 1981, said there was no indication of a rebel tour when he and secretary Steven Camacho met Croft in early January 1983.
"He had a back injury and he wrote and said, 'look, I've still got cricket left in me, would the Board pay for me to fly down to Jamaica and be treated by professor (John) Golding'. We said certainly, and we put him up in a hotel here."
According to Rae, Camacho took Croft to daily rehabilitation sessions with Golding. During supper with both executives at Rae's St Andrew home, Croft assured them he was determined to play again for the regional team.
"The next morning Steven went for him at the hotel at 6:30 in the morning and the hotel people said he had checked out. The next thing we heard he was on his way to South Africa," Rae said.
He added that it ended his relationship with Croft. "A pen went through his name as far as I was concerned."
The West Indians played two four-day 'Tests' and six one-day internationals, which they won 4-2. They returned for another tour in December 1984.
The WICBC slapped the rebels with life bans, which was lifted in 1989. Stephenson went on to play for Nottinghamshire in the English County Championship with great success, while Mosley made his Test debut against England in 1990.
Kallicharan continued to plunder runs for Warwickshire in county cricket. Mattis migrated to the United States and even played a handful of matches for that country.
Croft became a cricket writer and commentator for Sky Sports and the British Broadcasting Corporation. Rowe moved to the US and while he still retains a cult following in Jamaica, his name nonetheless draws widespread scorn.
Two years ago, the Jamaica Cricket Association (JCA) announced it would name a stand at Sabina Park in his honour. It was withdrawn after vehement protests.
Rae, the former Jamaica and West Indian opening batsman, served as WICBC president until 1988. He died in 2005 at age 82.