The Indians looked very casual wearing blue T-shirts with white stripes as they arrived in England for a long tour.
There was nothing 'official' about the Indian cricket team when it arrived in London on Sunday for the long tour of England starting later this week. Mahendra Singh Dhoni and his 17 men preferred to keep their traditional blazers in their suitcases and wear casuals on the long flight from Mumbai to London. Teams usually wear blazers on arrival.
Wearing a blazer is a tradition that most teams follow. So when the richest cricket Board relaxes its rules and allow its best players travel to a foreign country wearing T-shirts and track pants, it surely raises a few eyebrows. But then the BCCI makes its own rules. Later this week, it will have its (Supreme Court) banned president - N. Srinivasan - becoming the No. 1 administrator of world cricket.
Wearing blue T-shirts with white stripes, the Indians looked a very casual unit. Dhoni, of course, knows this casualness will not work when the team gets down to business for the five Test, five ODI and one T20 series that will end on September 7. India play their first tour match versus Leicestershire at Grace Road from June 26.
According to a report in the Indian Express, the BCCI agreed to the players' wish to wear T shirts on long flights.
"The BCCI has accepted the players' request for avoiding blazers on long flights and instead allowing them to wear casuals. It does get very uncomfortable to wear formals, especially when they have to travel for more than 5-6 hours. So we have accepted their request. The players can wear their blazers for official functions or dinners later during the tour," BCCI secretary Sanjay Patel told Express.
The BCCI also flew the team business class. According to Patel, economy class travel was taking a toll on the players, physically. "Players now can fly on business class as far as possible. One should not forget that whatever BCCI has achieved is because of its players," Patel said.
Blazer or no blazer, it will finally boil down to how India bat, bowl and field over the next two months and more. In 2011, when India toured England last, Dhoni's Devils were massacred in all formats of the game.