London: The controversy over Mahendra Singh Dhoni being asked to remove the military insignia lost its steam with the Indian Army on Saturday distancing itself from the controversy surrounding the dagger insignia, saying it had nothing to do with it.
Late on Friday, the International Cricket Council (ICC) refused to agree to the Indian cricket board’s appeal to let the former Indian skipper wear the logo on his gloves.
Lt. Gen. Cherish Mathson, GOC-in-C South Western Command, on Saturday, during a Passing out Parade has stated that using the insignia was Dhoni’s personal decision and that Army should not be dragged into the controversy.
“This is a personal decision of Dhoni. This is between Dhoni and the ICC,” Lt. Gen. Mathson told the media.
He also indicated that the Army should not be dragged into the controversy. “Whatever you are saying is Dhoni’s personal decision. The ICC will take a decision (on the matter).”
The ‘Balidaan Badge’ was spotted on Dhoni’s gloves as television replays showed him stumping Andile Phehlukwayo in the 40th over of the innings bowled by Yuzvendra Chahal during India’s first World Cup match on June 5.
According to information from the Indian camp, Dhoni himself did not realise that sporting the insignia on his glove would snowball into such a major controversy.
Many are of the opinion that the whole issue was handled very unprofessionally by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) as they too tried to push for Dhoni wearing the glove with the insignia — being fully aware that they have signed the terms and conditions of the ICC with regard to the dress & clothing code for the World Cup.
Meanwhile, Gautam Gambhir — a retired teammate of Dhoni and a member of his 2011 World Cup-winning team — has come out in support of Dhoni in the gloves controversy, saying ICC’s job is not to look at who is wearing what.
“The ICC’s job is to run cricket in the right way, not to see who is wearing the gloves and the logo on it,” the cricketer-turned-politician said during an interaction.
Since Dhoni played the match against South Africa wearing the glove, hereafter umpires will check for any logo on cricketers’ attire.
Interestingly, like in boxing where referees check the gloves, in cricket too, umpires may been seen doing the same! It is understood that sports goods companies in India are already planning to make wicket keeping gloves with the Indian Army insignia on it!
— With inputs from agencies