Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul have been ruled out of the first ODI of the series against Australia, which is scheduled to be played in Sydney on Saturday. Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is yet to officially announce the punishment for the young duo, who made some distasteful and absurd remarks about women in a popular chat show -Koffee with Karan, aired last Sunday.
A report in PTI suggests that both Pandya and Rahul will not be playing the first ODI versus Australia. While Pandya has been dropped from the team (he was set to make his comeback into playing XI), Rahul was not in contention of playing this ODI. The two players were issued show cause notices over their comments on national television which created a huge stir on social media.
“The team management has told Pandya that he is not playing tomorrow as they are yet to get a final directive. Rahul, in any case, wasn’t in contention for a first XI berth. The team management is waiting for an official communication on whether there is a provisional suspension and if they will be sent back,” a source was quoted as saying by PTI.
It was believed that the top bosses of BCCI have already made up their mind and decided on the action, with the quantum of punishment yet to be fixed. Pandya and Rahul appeared on the talk show on Sunday where their comments – Pandya’s in particular – came in for widespread criticism and raised concerns over the team culture.
As per the reports of ESPNcricinfo – Vinod Rai, one of the members of the Committee of Administrators is in favour of a two-match ban. While BCCI treasurer Anirudh Chaudhry has pushed for a stronger penalty should the players be found guilty of bringing game and Indian cricket into disrepute. There is even a view that the punishments for the two differ according to what each of them said on the show.
“I have seen the remarks made by these two players on the show in print today,” Rai wrote on Thursday. “Very crass. No apology can cover it. I had asked Diana [Edulji] to suggest penalty because I had not seen the clip. I think we need to give both of them a two-match suspension.”