23 February 2019 05:52 AM

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SANDIPAN BANERJEE | 15 JANUARY, 2019

Time for BCCI to Impose Strict Off Field Protocol for the Players

Indian cricketers are like ambassadors, every move is under scrutiny


The entire controversy surrounding the misogynistic comments of Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul during their appearance at the “Koffee With Karan” chat show is nothing but a huge PR disaster for the BCCI and Indian cricket.

Though the board and the team management have already distanced themselves from the sexist remarks both Pandya and Rahul made on that show, the mega storm triggered due to those comments is bound to affect the overall image of the Indian dressing room.

Nevertheless, in recent times, this is not the only occasion when a remark by an Indian cricketer on a public platform, has drawn widespread criticism from the fans.

Remember, a few weeks back a video surfaced on the social media, in which Indian captain Virat Kohli was seen advising a fan to leave the country for admiring the skills of foreign players. The entire Indian cricket establishment was deeply upset by the immature comments of the skipper. And according to some media reports subsequently a member of the Supreme Court appointed CoA, unofficially asked Kohli to “be humble.

Well, not only the players, even the support staff (read that support staff as one particular individual is making all the noise) of the Indian team i, seem to be making a habit of triggering unnecessary controversies time and again.

During a recent Test match at Adelaide, India’s head-coach Ravi Shastri was trolled severely on the social media for using unparliamentary language (goti muh me aa gya tha) in the middle of an interview with the official broadcasters. In fact, these days Shastri is making a habit of coming out with some lame remarks about past Indians teams whenever he talks with the media. Perhaps, taking a dig at past teams and some former legends of Indian cricket satisfy his ego, but it certainly harms the credibility of the Indian dressing room.

Cricket is not just a game in India. It’s a religion, if not more. Millions look up to the national players as their role models. The aspiring youngsters, look to follow their success path, emulate them in every way.

Hence, the hounour of representing India at the highest level comes with a certain responsibilities.

In this era of social media each and every move of a cricketer draws huge public attention both on and off the field. So, it is high time for the BCCI, to take proper steps to educate its players as well as the support staff about the importance of maintaining proper etiquette even when they are not on the field.

Yes, everyone has their personal life and one needs to respect their privacy, but whenever these centrally contracted cricketers or any other member of the dressing room are on a public platform, they should behave according to a proper BCCI Code of Conduct.

There should not be any communication gap between the players and the board regarding this. And utmost importance should be given to the implementation of these rules, which hasn’t been the case in the current scenario.

It is the responsibility of the Board to monitor whether its players are obeying the protocols are not. In case of any dispute, there should be a heavy penalty, irrespective of the stature of the concerned person. In many ways, the Indian cricketers are the ambassadors of our nations and it is high time they realise that.
 

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