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IPL and controversies feed off each other

  • Written by News Age Sports Desk
  • Published in Sports
Featured IPL and controversies feed off each other IPL and controversies feed off each other

Controversies and Indian Premier League go hand in hand. There has hardly been a year that the tournament has gone smoothly without some issue or the other.

Close to 60 games, the cream of world cricket and teams owned by billionaires, the league is bound to be under spotlight through out.

While IPL has thrown up some serious controversies over the years and the negativity surrounding it, the tournament has only grown bigger on popularity charts. Why? Because it thrives on not just the game of cricket, but controversies and bring in a lot of entertainment and thus become a talking point for the audience — it is like a soap opera for the sports buffs.

Like any season, the IPL, in its 12th year, has brought couple of controversies. And these have has become the talking point. The two events that became talking point this time are the ‘Mankading’ controversy surrounding Kings XI Punjab captain Ravichandran Ashwin and the more recent case of MS Dhoni ‘crossing the line’.

Hardly had the din surrounding the ‘Mankading’ controversy — involving Ashwin and Rajasthan Royals’ Jos Buttler — died, Dhoni invoked a fresh one which sent shock waves across the cricketing community. On Wednesday, Chennai Super Kings skipper Dhoni, called Captain Cool for his calm demeanor and Zen-like calmness showed that he is a human after all. The most successful Indian captain barged on to the field to question the umpire over a ‘no-ball’, which was overuled. A visibly angry Dhoni argued with the official fervently.

The next day, for breaching the IPL Code of Conduct the former India captain was fined 50 per cent of his match fee — a punishment which was not received well by many as they considered it to be a lighter punishment. Many experts said they expected a heavier fine or even match suspension. Cutting match fee by half is hardly going to make a difference monetarily to these big names, who earn from in millions from their franchisees.

Ashwin ‘Mankading’ Buttler, though well within the rule book, did raise questions over the ethical aspect and was said by many to be against the spirit of the game. The cricketing world was split between those in favour of Ashwin and those against him. Both sides made strong arguments in their favour and Ashwin recently said that if ‘Mankading’ is a problem, then it should be made illegal in the rule book. That should settle the matter for now.

In a country where cricketers enjoy demi-god status, controversies like these have a serious impact on the minds of upcoming players. They are left confused about whether it is okay to ‘Mankad’ a batsman and also break the rules and do a Dhoni when a game is on.

These two issues may appear light-weight compared to a much graver controversy like the spot-fixing case in 2013 that rocked the cricket world. However, these two will be tagged to the cricketer’s name and will be recounted time and again in the future. Especially, when it comes to Dhoni as he has kept his emotions in check all these years. As far as controversies go, these two will not be the last and many more are likely to occur in future. May be some more serious than what we have witnessed all these years.

However, cricketers should also recognise that while they can express themselves, it should not dent the image of sport. Especially, one that is known as the Gentleman’s Game.   

 

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