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ICC Unlikely to take Action on PCB's Complaint on Ahmedabad Crowd Behaviour

The International Cricket Council (ICC) is unlikely to take action on the Pakistan Cricket Board's (PCB) complaint regarding the crowd behavior during the match in Ahmedabad. Find out more about the potential outcome.

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ODI World Cup 2023 India vs Pakistan 12th Match at Narendra Modi Stadium, Ahmedabad

The recently concluded World Cup game between India and Pakistan in Ahmedabad on October 14 witnessed an intense match on the field but also raised concerns about the behavior of the crowd. The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) lodged a formal complaint against the Ahmedabad crowd, alleging improper behavior. However, it seems that the International Cricket Council (ICC) is unlikely to take any action on the matter. In this article, we will explore the reasons behind the ICC's response and the limitations of its anti-discrimination code.

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Also Read ICC World Cup 2023 India vs Pakistan 12th Match Highlights


The PCB's Complaint and the ICC's Stance

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The PCB filed a complaint with the ICC, accusing the Ahmedabad crowd of boorish behavior during the India vs Pakistan World Cup game. The board highlighted a specific incident where Mohammed Rizwan, the Pakistani wicket-keeper batter, was heckled with religious chants by a section of fans as he walked back to the pavilion after his dismissal. The PCB's complaint raises concerns about the conduct of the crowd and seeks appropriate action from the game's governing body.

However, it appears that the ICC is unlikely to take any tangible action in response to the PCB's complaint. According to a veteran official, the ICC's anti-discrimination code is limited to addressing individual cases and does not cover group behavior. While the ICC takes every complaint seriously, it is challenging to take any substantial action when dealing with collective chants or slogans by a large crowd.


Anti-Discrimination Code and Its Limitations

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The anti-discrimination code enforced by the ICC primarily focuses on addressing individual cases of discrimination and racism. It allows the governing body to identify and take action against individuals involved in such incidents. However, it becomes more complicated when dealing with collective behavior, such as a large crowd chanting slogans.

In instances where thousands of people are shouting a slogan, it becomes challenging to hold anyone accountable individually. The ICC's code is not designed to handle such scenarios where the behavior is not directly attributed to a specific person. Moreover, as long as no player was injured by any objects thrown from the gallery, the ICC might not view the incident as a severe violation deserving disciplinary action.


Collective Racism in Sports and Its Consequences

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Instances of collective racism in sports are not unheard of, and governing bodies have dealt with them differently. One such example is the case of Brazilian football international Vinicius Junior, who faced racist slurs during a La Liga match between Real Madrid and Valencia. In response, the governing body of football in Spain sanctioned partial closure of a stand at Valencia's home ground and imposed a fine on the club.

However, it is crucial to note that the response to collective racism varies across sports and countries. While football authorities took action against the club and identified individuals responsible for the slurs, cricket's anti-discrimination code does not provide the same level of enforcement when dealing with group behavior.


The Nature of Partisan Crowds in Elite Sport

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It is essential to understand that a partisan crowd is often expected in elite sports, especially during high-stakes games between rival teams. The pressure exerted by the crowd can significantly impact the players on the field. In the case of the India vs Pakistan World Cup game, more than one lakh fans packed the Narendra Modi Stadium, creating a charged atmosphere.

The Director of Cricket for Pakistan, Mickey Arthur, admitted that his players were overawed by the vociferous crowd during their seven-wicket loss to India. While the behavior of the crowd might be seen as inappropriate, it is crucial to acknowledge the intense emotions and passion that can arise in such rivalries. Elite sports require players to perform under immense pressure, and the support or taunting from the crowd is an integral part of the game.


ICC's Stand on Racism and Zero Tolerance Policy

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The ICC, like other sporting bodies, has a stand against racism and maintains a zero tolerance policy for such behavior. During its events, the ICC often displays billboards and promotes messages denouncing racism. These measures aim to create an inclusive and respectful environment for players and spectators alike.

While the ICC's commitment to combating racism is commendable, its anti-discrimination code's limitations restrict its ability to address collective behavior by a large crowd. As long as the actions of the crowd do not cross the line into direct physical harm or individual targeting, the ICC may find it challenging to take disciplinary action.


Conclusion

In conclusion, the ICC's response to the PCB's complaint regarding the crowd behavior during the India vs Pakistan World Cup game in Ahmedabad is unlikely to result in any tangible action. The ICC's anti-discrimination code is primarily focused on addressing individual cases of discrimination and racism, making it difficult to hold a large crowd accountable for collective behavior. While the behavior of the crowd might be seen as inappropriate, the intense emotions and partisan nature of such high-stakes games are inherent to elite sports. The ICC's commitment to combating racism remains steadfast, but it faces limitations in dealing with incidents involving group behavior.

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