Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni on Wednesday emerged out fighting once again in the James Anderson–Ravindra Jadeja case. He firmly stated that he stands by what he said during the whole saga and that they brought forward “something that was unacceptable”. Ahead of the fourth Test against England, starting at Manchester on Thursday, all the talk continued to be about the incident that has marred the five-match series.
Both Anderson and Jadeja were pronounced non-guilty by the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) judicial commission last Friday and the game’s world governing body has decided not to appeal against the verdict despite a request from Board of Control for Cricket India (BCCI). Dhoni in support for the all-rounder said that I did something that was right and I stand for what’s right and what’s wrong.
Dhoni added, if something wrong is happening, he will always go against it irrespective of who is doing it. If one of his players gets fined and if he’s within the boundary lines, he will definitely go and defend him. But if he crosses that line, I won’t come and he will go alone and face the consequences. When he was asked if the ICC verdict was personal humiliation for him since he was so vocal about the issue, Dhoni denied the same and said that it was physical contact that they reported about. They never said anything about sledging. Quite a few harsh words were spoken but they didn’t report that.
What is more important is that they brought forward something that they thought was unacceptable. What happens beyond that, it is not in his jurisdiction to penalise someone. Every member of the team thought this incident was bad for the game so they brought it forward. It’s up to the ICC and others to see what needs to be done this were the exact word from Dhoni.
Talking specifically about the verdict given out, the Indian skipper said that in our society we have something called evidence and something called lack of evidence. So the verdict is mostly on those lines and it is time for us to move ahead. What is however very interesting is that Jadeja was fined and as he has said previously that there’s not even a single mistake committed from his side. So it is good for us that all allegations against him were dropped based on the evidence available. However it is really interesting what David Boon found out on the basis of which he fined 50 percent of Jadeja’s match fees, Dhoni further added.
The intricacies of the matter will be debated long after the series but is over for now. But as far as Dhoni is concerned, this wasn’t personal agenda against Anderson and only that the ‘Spirit of the Game’ needs to be kept up. Dhoni thinks Anderson as a terrific bowler. He works out the batsmen and is an aggressive bowler, and that’s the kind of bowler the crowd wants to watch. But Dhoni wouldn’t want to make a comment on whether he needs to change because strong characters are needed in the game. And it doesn’t matter whether it is him or a player from any other side, it can be someone from my side, the umpires need to step in when the individual crosses the limit and take the required action. What matters is that they stay within the guidelines and that’s important for the game and spectators, stated Dhoni.
With the series intriguingly poised at 1-1, and we are left with two important matches, but still talk’s about the Jadeja-Anderson issue leaves strong undertones as to what lies ahead if there is yet another altercation on the field. There is no need to control Anderson (or any other player) really. A player only needs to be controlled if something wrong is happening. Nobody wants everyone to play the same way because individuals bring character to the side. It’s because of the 18-19 players that character of the side is made. Everybody is different in their own way. But there are certain guidelines that need to be followed and as long as they are following that it is fine for everybody said the Indian skipper.
India will be looking to turn around their fortunes after a heavy 266-run loss at Southampton which was England’s first Test win in 11 matches. It made us forget all the good work done by the team in the second Test at Lord’s where they won by 95 runs. Taking 20 wickets is very important to win Test matches but we cannot forget that it is important to score runs as well. If you get 500-550 runs on the board, the opposition batsmen will be under pressure unless they bat well for 2-3 sessions continuously. Dhoni thinks this as very much important.
Dhoni thinks they have dropped a few catches in the last match and it didn’t look like they will take 20 wickets on that pitch. So they will see how the wicket at Old Trafford is and then they will see who their best 4-5 bowlers are and then they will decide the team composition.