MS Dhoni gloves row has hit the headlines even as Indian Cricket team is set to take on five-time world champions Australia in World Cup 2019 on Sunday. The controversy began with former World Cup-winning captain donning wicket-keeping gloves that have a dagger logo embossed, against South Africa in Southampton. This was India’s opening match in the quadrennial tournament. The dagger looks strikingly similar to that of Indian Army insignia.
Though the Chennai Super Kings captain’s move was hailed by his fans on social media, International Cricket Council (ICC) has asked Board of Control for Cricket (BCCI) in India to remove the badge citing that this goes against norms laid down by the apex body. With jury still out on the issue, Financial Express Online talked to a few cricket commentators to seek their opinions on the growing debate.
“It’s a complete non-issue. The logo which was there on MS Dhoni’s gloves could be a registered one by the maker of the gloves as part of its whole new brand. If it is a registered logo then this should not be an issue. MS Dhoni is a seasoned player and he knows the rules and must have taken precautions before sporting this,” Senior sports communication professional G Rajaraman told Financial Express Online. Rajaraman also posted on Twitter saying that while ICC official said “For first breach is no (sanction), just a request to remove”, the ICC Playing Handbook mentions ‘Reprimand’ as a minimum sanction for a first offence.
“He should have taken permission as there are a certain set of rules which every player should abide by. This is an unnecessary controversy which could have been avoided. If ICC were to allow Dhoni to continue wearing these gloves with insignia, tomorrow Pakistan players may also want to wear any signages belonging to their army, then what?” wondered senior sports journalist Harpal Singh Bedi.
Earlier, ICC General Manager— Strategic Communications Claire Furlong said any wicket keeper can sport maximum of two manufacturers’ logos on his/her glove as ICC does not allow other visible logos other than the manufacturers’ ones. Meanwhile, Committee of Administrators (CoA) chief Vinod Rai said that BCCI had sent a formal request to the ICC for clearance on this issue. As per ICC regulations, players can’t sport any commercial, religious or military logo and there was nothing commercial or religious in this regard as we all know, Rai was quoted as saying by PTI. Rai, however, said if the ICC has a set of norms, BCCI would follow the norms.