Gautam Gambhir’s voice matters more today as he’s not just a cricketer but also a Lok Sabha Member of Parliament and the former opener-now politician raised it in favour of MS Dhoni amid the row over the defence forces' insignia on his wicketkeeping gloves. Gambhir, who had played crucial knocks in the finals of both Worlds Cups (2007 World T20 and 2011 Cricket World Cup) India won under Dhoni, came out in support of his former captain. The former opener stated that the ICC should pay importance to issues like providing better pitches for bowlers instead of what logos the players are sporting.
Reacting to the row over Dhoni sporting the ‘Balidaan Badge’, the regimental dagger insignia of the Indian Para Special Forces, Gambhir in an interview with a TV channel said that the ICC’s job is to ensure cricket is run in the right way, and not to pay attention to who is wearing the ‘gallows’ and the logo on it.
The two-time World Cup winner also stated that the cricket body should instead pay attention that there are no 300-400 run totals, to provide the right pitches so that the conditions don’t favour the batsmen alone. Gambhir added there was ‘too much importance’ was given to the issue.
The ICC had requested the BCCI to get the insignia removed off Dhoni’s gloves after the veteran was seen sporting the symbol on his wicketkeeping gloves in their first World Cup match against South Africa on Wednesday.
In 2011, Dhoni was given an honorary rank of Lieutenant Colonel and he has undergone training for a brief period with the para regiment. During the course of his training in Agra, Dhoni is believed to have done five parachute jumps during the training period.
There was a national uproar over the ICC decision and several celebrities like Virender Sehwag Sreesanth, Suresh Raina, Bhaichung Bhutia, Milkha Singh had backed Dhoni to continue carrying the insignia on his gloves.
However, despite national outrage and BCCI writing a consideration letter over the ICC seeking a removal of the ‘Balidaan Badge’ from MS Dhoni’s wicketkeeping gloves, the cricket body stated that the logo will not be permitted because it breaches the regulations on items of clothing or equipment.
Here’s the ICC's full statement:
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.