Stories have abounded about Indian cricketers’ reluctance to abide by the World Anti Doping Agency (WADA) code as their protocols were too stringent. Nothing could be further from the truth.
India’s cricketers understand that they, as elite sportspersons, have little choice when it comes to complying with anti-doping laws, but were more worried about the modalities of the same.
A team source revealed that the International Cricket Council had sent across a communiqué to the effect that players could take till June 1 to submit their “whereabouts” details as per the ADAMS (Anti-Doping Administration and Management System) online system.
The ICC has cited changes to the Indian Premier League schedule as the reason for extending the deadline to June 1, 2009. In reality, the Indian players did not have any problems with the anti-doping regulations but rather had concerns about how they would administer the system online.
A majority of Indian cricketers now carry laptop computers on tour but mostly use them for communication purposes (email, FaceBook, chat etc) or entertainment in terms of listening to music or watching videos online.
“We have been informed that the submission of whereabouts for the Q2 (second quarter) will remain an ‘education’ exercise, giving us an opportunity to familiarise ourselves with the submission process,” a team source revealed. The ICC, working with the BCCI, hopes to ensure that all players “understood the significant consequences of not complying with their obligations.”
In reality, what this does is put further pressure on Nitin Patel, the team doctor and physio, for he is the point man in ensuring the players fulfil their obligations to the BCCI, and therein WADA and the ICC.