India have had issues with players’ conduct both on and off the field of late. While captain Virat Kohli and newcomer Rishabh Pant made headlines during the recent Test series against Australia in which they were seen targeting opponents, all-rounder Hardik Pandya and batsman KL Rahul invited trouble by making a controversial TV appearance. Both Pandya and Rahul faced suspension till the authorities felt of allowing them back to play the game. Now, the International Cricket Council (ICC) too has given a clean chit to the Indian team on matters of behaviour.
On Thursday, ICC CEO Dave Richardson, a former South Africa cricketer, praised Kohli as a great ambassador the game has seen and also called the Indian team a “well-behaved” one after questions were asked on the recent controversy involving Pandya. The 25-year-old cricketer was heard speaking things that seemed to be of low taste on the popular TV show ‘Koffee With Karan’ with filmmaker Karan Johar. Both he and Rahul faced a backlash and were suspended as a result of which they missed the ODI series in Australia.
Richardson, who was in New Delhi for a promotional event related to the World Cup which is due in England and Wales in May-July, was asked about the Pandya episode. He said it was something for the concerned team to worry about but certified India as a “well-behaved team” that abides by umpiring decisions and plays in the right spirit.
“They perform very well and Virat Kohli is the great ambassador for the game. He talks passionately not about T20 cricket but Test cricket and 50-over cricket and I think all the good players want to play all formats of the game.”
He also said that the Pandya issue was not something huge from the global perspective and hoped that India would sort it out quickly. Pandya joined the Indian team in New Zealand after two ODIs and made a decent contribution in the third match by taking two wickets and one brilliant catch.
Richardson also said that India are dominating the game the way Australia did at one point. Which is a great positive for the Indian team’s moral when the ICC Cricket World Cup is just a few months away.