The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is not happy with the England debacle. In fact, they are so angry, that rumour has it they are coming out with the big gun – the dreaded chastity belt.
According to reports in a newspaper and TV channels, the board is mulling over banning wives and girlfriends (or the marginally disturbing term WAGs) of the players from touring with the team. BCCI has since, apparently denied the move but it did get us thinking.
It has been tradition to have the WAGs tag along, with prime seats in the galleries reserved for their viewing pleasure. But the move would have stopped all that.
We do see the logic: with only so much blood to go around the body, it would be easier for the players to concentrate on the bats and balls without all the... let’s say distraction.
And with the likes of Anushka Sharma, Sakshi Dhoni and Dipika Pallikal in WAGs ranks, it does feel slightly hypocritical to blame the boys.
Would it have been a good move? While precedents of such action taken against players are not available in the annals of cricket, it has been tried in football. The statistics do not stack up well for the teams who did take the step though.
A look at the 2014 Fifa World Cup seems to suggest that a little romp off the field does boost performance on it. None of the four teams who completely banned sexual activities during the tournaments – Russia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Chile and Mexico – made it past the group of 16.
On the other hand, teams like Brazil, who allowed “normal sex” (trust us; we do not know what that means. We are just quoting Luiz Felipe Scolari) seemed to fare much better.
And the ones who took the laissez faire attitude – well to put it in perspective, both winners Germany and third placed Holland fall in this category.
There was another approach as well. Costa Rica boss Jorge Luis Pinto promised his players they could “enjoy themselves” once they qualified for the next round. The meteoric rise of these underdogs seems less surprising now?
Well we do not know for sure where BCCI stands on the issue of off field undercover activities, but with the team down in the dumps, a little bit of creative problem solving, a la Pinto, may not be unwelcome.