New Delhi: Indian limited overs captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni on Saturday called keep a balance when it comes to intruding the field of play for TV gimmicks.
Speaking after leading India to a consolation win against Australia in Sydney, Dhoni said that "I am quite a traditional guy. I have always felt that… anything that disturbs the game of cricket I don't like it. It all started right from the T20 where people would be like, 'Why don't you wear a mic?', 'Why don't you wear a camera?'
The world cup winning skipper was referring to an incident involving his deputy Virat Kohli while chasing Australia's 330 runs. The first ball that Kohli faced was called a dead ball after it hit the dangling spider cam on its way to the boundary.
India eventually won the match by six wickets with two balls remaining. But in a close game like this, it could have change the end result. And the incident obviously left a bad taste in MS Dhoni's palate.
"I have always felt there is a need for balance. At the end of the day it is a spectator sport, people watching on television, but at the same time four runs can matter, especially when it is a close game. Those four runs can be crucial. Everyone gets penalised, why not have the same system for the spider cam? Say, 'Okay if you get hit, 2000 dollars per hit.' Let's make it interesting," added Dhoni.
The 34-year-old also pointed the unwanted intrusion into the players' sphere and said "People [broadcasters] are striving for more. When you have got out and walking off, the cameraman goes right under your face. The same way the spider cam is right next to you. You have seen players, they are like, 'What is happening?' It makes a lot of noise. At the end of the day it is also about the spectators. If spectators are not there, cricket won't be played. It is a mix and match; 2000 dollars per hit is a good option."
Dhoni's take on the so-called 'exclusive' coverage also reminds of the recent sexism row involving Chris Gayle. The West Indies batsman was widely chastise for inappropriately asking for a date to a TV reporter during a Big Bash League match.
(With Agency inputs)