May 28, 2013, will go down as one of the saddest days in Indian cricket. By refusing to utter even a single word on the raging IPL spot-fixing controversy, India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni has let the country and its cricket fans down.
Ahead of Team India's departure to England for the Champions Trophy, Dhoni and coach Duncan Fletcher faced the media in Mumbai on Tuesday evening (May 29).
Dhoni, who had skipped two Chennai Super Kings' press conferences due to the same issue, was bound to interact with the media as India skipper ahead of Champions Trophy. But it was turned into a farce with the BCCI official at the event instructing the journalists to pose questions to the captain only related to the tournament in England.
But how can BCCI gag the Fourth Estate just like as they do its contracted players? There were 5 questions at Dhoni on spot-fixing and he refused to play at them (like a batsman leaving the ball) and just smiled back. The BCCI official kept on saying " next question" to every spot-fixing query.
The basic question which needs to be asked to Dhoni is whether he is answerable only to BCCI, Chennai Super Kings and India Cements boss - N Srinivasan. Above all these three, he represents India. Dhoni should know that there is no bigger honour in sport than to lead your country's cricket team - the most followed and loved.
It is known fact that Dhoni enjoys a very close relationship with Srinivasan. The BCCI president saved him from losing India captaincy once. He made the wicketkeeper-batsman vice president of India Cements. But Dhoni has now chosen to hear his "master" and ignore the adoring fans.
Even just a single line on the row would have helped. But by remaining silent Dhoni has insulted the fans. Has Dhoni and BCCI taken the paying public for granted? Do they feel they can do whatever they want and the cricket-watching public will continue to support them?
Former captain Rahul Dravid said it felt like "bereavement" hearing about fixing allegations involving his own Rajasthan Royals' three members. He had the courage to speak out. Neither did he avoid not smile back when faced with adversity.
On many occasions, Dhoni has bailed Team India out of crises. But when the biggest of them has hit the very base of the game in India, he refuses to come out to bat. Why is it so?
Hope you answer in England. Questions will keep coming at you and hope your 'forced' silence/gag ends.
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