BCCI must pull up Raina

Oct 06, 2012, 07:52 IST | MiD DAY Correspondent

Young India cricketer Suresh Raina's Twitter account gave sportsmanship a poor name on Thursday night when the Pakistan team, which had just lost their ICC World Twenty20 semi-final to hosts Sri Lanka, were called besharam (shameless).

Cricket fans had reason to believe that Raina had shown great disrespect to his across-the-border cricketers.

However, Raina, who was part of Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s team which failed to reach the semi-finals of the tournament, clarified the following morning that it was his young nephew, who had played a prank on his Twitter account.

Cricket lovers are expected to believe this, but everyone knows about cover-up jobs. Some of our fellow Indians — especially in the political circles — have become masters of the craft.

Even though Raina maintains it is his nephew, who keyed in those words, he shouldn’t escape censure from the Board of Control for Cricket in India.

That will send out the right kind of message to other cricketers. In December, the Pakistani team will be visiting India for a limited overs series and this Twitter disgrace should be a closed chapter by then.

The BCCI have shown great support to their players in the recent past, but there comes a time when the whip must be used on those who contribute to anything which may be called ‘just not cricket.’

Banning tweeting completely would be an extreme step, but players must be barred from expressing sentiments, which are offensive to teammates and the opposition. The case of England batting stalwart Kevin Pietersen is too recent to ignore and his cricketing career nearly ended after he spoke about his teammates to certain players from the South African team via text messages.

A zero-tolerance policy to offensive remarks must be drafted ASAP for the BCCI to gain respect from even their sharpest critics. 

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