Strange are the ways of the Indian cricket board. First they removed the fair play points table from the official website of the Indian T20 League. Then they shocked everyone by giving the fair play award to the Chennai Super Kings after they had lost miserably in the final.
CSK, however, weren’t complaining. They were leading the table at the time it was removed from the website. CSK coach Stephen Fleming too felt they deserved the honour. "We are obviously proud of the way we play on the field," said Fleming. "It’s one of the key components of the side. We want to play the game hard and but we want to be very fair. Like we pride ourselves on being top of table for points, we also pride ourselves on being top for fair play. You can’t take that away from us."
But that wasn’t the only thing strange about Sunday. If the absence of the two skippers at the joint pre-match media conference wasn’t conspicuous enough, MS Dhoni’s failure to show up at the post-final interaction didn’t help quell notions that it was a deliberate attempt at shielding him from possible barbed questions regarding the off-field affairs troubling his team.
Unlike ICC events, it isn’t mandatory that captains are present at the media interaction before or after the final. And Dhoni has a reputation of not turning up at the media interaction even after winning the T20 League previously.
But if this league is indeed an international product, as claim-ed by the BCCI president N Sri-nivasan, is it too much to expect a captain to appear at least once, before or after the final?
Fleming however had his defence ready. "He (Dhoni) doesn’t do a lot of media you know that," he said. "That’s just his style. You probably will get a chance to talk to Dhoni in the next couple of days (before India leave for the Champions Trophy in England on Wednesday). His commitments are high. That’s all I can say."
Right. But would questions on CSK be allowed on Wednesday?