July 24, 2024

Pakistan’s Azam Khan Displays Palestine Flag On Bat, PCB Slaps Fine Of 50 Percent Match Fees As He Breaches ICC Code Of Conduct

Pakistan’s Azam Khan Displays Palestine Flag On Bat, PCB Slaps Fine Of 50 Percent Match Fees As He Breaches ICC Code Of Conduct
Azam Khan is not the first cricketer to show his solidarity with Palestine during a cricket match.

Earlier, England cricketer Moeen Ali had wore ‘Save Gaza’ wristbands while playing in an international match.

Pakistan cricketer Azam Khan was slapped with 50 percent of his match fee for breaching the clothing and equipment regulations of ICC on Sunday when he played National T20 tournament in Karachi.

Playing for Karachi Whites, Azam came out to bat with his willow displaying the flag of Palestine. That was an attempt by Azam to back the Palestine cause and stand with the victims in the war-torn nation.

However, ICC’s rules and regulations do not allow the cricketer to put any logo or message on their clothes or equipment such as bats, gloves which carries a political , religious, statement.

This ICC Code Of Conduct has to be followed in even the domestic matches by all the member boards.

Azam was subsequently fined 50 percent of his match fee.

A report in Geo News said that Azam had carried the flag on the bat in the past two matches of the same tournament but never received a warning from anyone.

In October, almost all the members of the Pakistan men’s cricket team had shown their support for Palestine on social media. Wicketkeeper and batter Mohammad Rizwan had, in fact, dedicated his match-winning hundred vs Sri Lanka in the World Cup to the victims of war in Gaza.

However, that was not a breach of ICC’s code. PCB had then stated that “the team’s expression of solidarity was a personal decision.”

In 2019, MS Dhoni was stopped from wearing gloves during the World Cup which has the insignia of India’s Para Special Forces. Dhoni had breached the ICC Code of Conduct but there was no fine imposed on Dhoni by ICC.

According to ICC’s official guidelines on clothing and equipment, which is available on their website, “players and team officials shall not be permitted to wear,display or otherwise convey messages through arm bands or other items affixed to clothing OR equipment.”

In 2014, England cricketer Moeen Ali had wore the ‘Save Gaza’ wristbands during an international match and was reprimanded by ICC to not show any political message on the field. He was later banned by ICC to wear the same wristband.

There is a grey area in cricket between free speech and political statements. Many cricketers across the world supported the ‘Black Lives Matter’ movement by sitting on one knee, and Henry Oolnga, Andy Flower were hailed for their black armband demonstration during the 2003 World Cup, ICC took no action in these instances. ZN



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