MS Dhoni’s ‘Balidaan Badge’ row: ‘I did not know ICC rules’, says COA chief Vinod Rai
The BCCI had written a letter to the ICC seeking permission for Dhoni to wear the gloves sporting the regimental dagger insignia of the Army’s Special Forces.Updated: Sep 22, 2019, 15:15 IST
During the World Cup tournament earlier this year, former India captain MS Dhoni came under controversy for sporting wicketkeeper gloves which appeared to show a badge of his army regiment. As per the ICC guidelines, the players are only allowed to showcase the team’s insignia on all parts of their clothing. The BCCI had written a letter to the ICC seeking permission for Dhoni to wear the gloves sporting the regimental dagger insignia of the Army’s Special Forces. The request was turned down which led to a massive outcry from Indian cricket fans.
COA chief Vinod Rai was questioned over the cricketing body’s decision to make the request. In his reply, Rai said that he was unaware about the rules. Speaking to Indian Express, the COA chief said: “That was a non-issue. What he wore was not the insignia of his regiment. But he wore something… At that point, at least I did not know that the ICC had rules about what you can put on your gloves. I was taken by surprise. I said, look, if he is wearing it, he is free to wear it, and I supported him. Then I was shown 11 pages of ICC norms which say that you can only have your team’s insignia and that of the manufacturers. So we had to withdraw.”
He further added: “It was a genuine oversight by me. Why should I name anybody else? I did not know that there are such instructions.”
Dhoni has been away from cricket at the moment, having not been selected for the West Indies tour and the currently ongoing South Africa home series. Former captain and batting legend Sunil Gavaskar believes that time has come for Indian cricket to “look beyond Mahendra Singh Dhoni” and invest in youth going into next year’s World T20 in Australia.
However, there has been a raging debate on the options available as Rishabh Pant has not been able to grab his opportunities. But he remains Gavaskar’s “top-choice” going into the marquee event next year. Asked if Dhoni should be picked for the Bangladesh tour, Gavaskar replied in the negative. “No, we need to look beyond. Mahendra Singh Dhoni at least doesn’t figure in my team. If you are talking about the T20 World Cup, I will certainly think about Rishabh Pant,” Gavaskar told ‘Aaj Tak’.