The International Cricket Council (ICC) struck down BCCI’s request for wicketkeeper Mahendra Singh Dhoni to sport the regimental dagger insignia of the Indian Para Special Forces on his ’keeping gloves at the ongoing ICC World Cup in England and Wales.
The BCCI on Friday had sent a request to the game’s world body to make an exception because the insignia was not ‘religious, military, or commercial’ in nature. However, the ICC have refused to budge on the matter.
“The ICC has responded to the BCCI to confirm the logo displayed by MS Dhoni in the previous match is not permitted to be worn on his wicket-keeping gloves at the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2019. The regulations for ICC events do not permit any individual message or logo to be displayed on any items of clothing or equipment. In addition to this, the logo also breaches the regulations in relation to what is permitted on wicketkeeper gloves,” the ICC statement said on Friday.
The rule-book allows for only one sponsor’s logos on the wicket-keeping gloves. In Dhoni’s case, he already sports an SG logo on his gloves.
Appendix 2 of the ICC ‘Clothing and Equipment Regulations’ deals with the disciplinary action that the world body can initiate in case of breach or offences. Since Dhoni’s case falls under the non-commercial logo, charity logo or other breach, the first sanction under this offence is a reprimand.
For a second offence within 12 months, 25 per cent of match fees will be deducted, for the third offence 50 per cent and for the fourth offence 75 per cent.
Earlier in the day, after a day-long meeting in Mumbai on Friday, CoA members came to the decision that a letter asking permission from ICC.
“We are not going against any ICC rules. We are just requesting them to consider the matter since the rules say insignia worn by any player shouldn’t have any religious, military, or commercial significance — which is not there in Dhoni’s case. We have asked the ICC if Dhoni can continue to sport this insignia on his gloves,” CoA member Lt. Gen. (Retd.) Ravi Thodge told CricketNext after the meeting on Friday.
“We took permission from ICC to sport camouflage caps during the India-Australia ODI series. If the rules state that we need to take permission in this case also, we’ll do the same again. We are not demanding anything, it’s just a request to ICC,” Thodge added.
Balidaan is a distinct insignia of the special forces, which form part of the Parachute Regiment. It has a commando dagger pointed downwards, with upward-extending wings extending from the blade and a scroll superimposed on the blade with Balidaan inscribed in Devanagari. Only Paramilitary Commandos are allowed to wear the Balidaan Badge.
As per ICC’s Clothing and Equipment Rules and Regulations, under G1, “Players and team officials shall not be permitted to wear, display or otherwise convey messages through arm bands or other items affixed to clothing or equipment (“Personal Messages”) unless approved in advance by both the player or team official’s Board and the ICC Cricket Operations Department. Approval shall not be granted for messages which relate to political, religious or racial activities or causes. The ICC shall have the final say in determining whether any such message is approved. For the avoidance of doubt, where a message is approved by the player or team official’s Board but subsequently disapproved by the ICC’s Cricket Operations Department, the player or team official shall not be permitted to wear, display or otherwise convey such message in International Matches.”