Camouflage caps a great move

first_imgAs Team India heads closer to the ICC World Cup this summer, one thing is for sure, team bonding and team spirit is at an all-time high.Forget for a moment the loss to Australia in the third ODI on Friday, scenes from before the match caught the eye. As honorary Lieutenant Colonel MS Dhoni presented the camouflage caps to skipper Virat Kohli and other teammates, scenes one saw were incredible.As an honorary officer in the Territorial Army, Dhoni has taken his role quite seriously. Perhaps, he has been one of the best brand ambassadors for the Territorial Army and his plan to make the team wear a different cap was a huge hit.The sight of Dhoni presenting a different cap, designed apparently by the clothes sponsor of the team, looked good. When one talks of playing from the heart and doing it for the country, this move to sport a different cap could well be seen as an exercise in stressing the importance of building camaraderie.One could well argue there has never been any dearth of camaraderie in this Indian side, but in times like these, when we like to wear patriotism on our sleeves, Team India has paid the right respect which the Pulwama victims deserve. Before this, the team had also worn black armbands during a T20 match against Australia.For the few critics questioning the motive or rationale behind the camouflage caps, be sure this had the approval from the guardian of the game – the International Cricket Council, with no objection raised by match referee Ranjan Madugalle.advertisementOne is not sure whether it was the camouflage cap effect or a signal that Virat Kohli needed to be on attack mode, his 41st ODI century against the Aussies again had cricket fans in raptures.The more one watches Kohli score centuries these days, which is so frequent, you could be sure cricket statisticians are having a busy time. Given his rich vein of form and penchant for playing briskly, comparisons with the previous legend, who people also called the God of Cricket, Sachin Tendulkar, have become a must.In each sport, the definition of “greatest” has been an intense debate. If you take football, Pele vs Maradona was a pet topic for the old-timers. For this generation of football fans, which are in billions around the globe, the ultimate hero need not be Pele or Maradona but a Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi.If you take tennis, ‘who is the greatest’ becomes an intense debate around the time of the four Grand Slams each year. To compare artists from the wooden racquet age to modern athletes who wield the graphite racquet would be incorrect. Someone like Rod Laver, who himself is a Roger Federer fan, was at one time the greatest.Till 2000 or so, Pete Sampras was the greatest. With Federer taking over tennis and then Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic also winning big titles, the debate has been stirred again. More so, as Djokovic has returned to form in a big way and has been described by pundits as someone who can break even Federer’s record.Back to Kohli, even though he plays in a team sport, his contribution with the bat has been nothing short of magic. Whatever be the conditions and wherever be the venue around the globe, his batting has been like a monk in meditation. Nothing can disturb him other than perhaps an own error on his batting.There is no doubting since the time the Pulwama terror attack took place on February 14 and 40 lives were lost, it has churned the collective consciousness of the whole nation. What followed was even more disturbing when Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman was captured by Pakistan before being released.Incidents like these definitely affect the common man. Lovers of sport definitely forget their woes for a few hours when they watch Kohli hammer hundreds. The grammar of his batting has become a topic of debate even for the wizards like Shane Warne.Warne has said on social media that it will take him time to decide on the best batsman, though personally for him Don Bradman would be a first choice.Irrespective of the greatest tag and when Kohli scores his 50th ODI ton, what remains important is the Indian captain is fit as a fiddle. As someone who pays huge importance to fitness and diet, his running between the wickets has been exemplary.If there is one area where Kohli continues to learn from Dhoni, it’s in leadership skills and cricket acumen. Surely, the camouflage cap will contribute even at a later date when India face Pakistan in the World Cup.advertisementlast_img read more