The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has officially registered a complaint with the ICC regarding the crowd’s behavior towards the Pakistan players during their match against India at Ahmedabad’s Narendra Modi Stadium over the weekend.
In a game where Pakistan suffered a resounding defeat against India, their team director, Mickey Arthur, later compared the atmosphere to that of a bilateral match rather than an ICC event. The massive crowd, estimated at over 100,000, included only a few Pakistan fans, as visa issues prevented more from crossing the border. Arthur also questioned the absence of Pakistani music on the stadium playlist, specifically mentioning the omission of “Dil, Dil Pakistan,” a common fixture at Pakistan games during ICC events.
However, the PCB’s complaints revolve around more specific incidents captured in videos circulating on social media. During the toss, Pakistan captain Babar Azam was loudly booed, and “Jai Shri Ram” chants were directed at Mohammad Rizwan as he walked back after being dismissed. Additionally, the PCB has cited instances of Hasan Ali being taunted with similar chants while fielding during India’s innings.
The complaint, sent to the ICC management, invokes section 11 of the ICC’s anti-discrimination policy for international cricket. This section focuses on addressing inappropriate conduct by spectators: “The ICC and each of its Members should take such steps as it considers necessary to prevent the occurrence at International Matches played within its jurisdiction or those played as part of an ICC Event of Inappropriate Conduct by spectators and to ensure that any such conduct is dealt with in a timely manner by the Member or ICC (as applicable) or others before, during and/or after the International Match (as may be appropriate).”
According to the policy, any such incident should be recorded by an anti-discrimination administrator (appointed by the host board) in a specific form and submitted to the ICC’s representative in the anti-discrimination department within two weeks.
In the same complaint, the PCB also reiterated the issue of visas not being granted to Pakistani fans and only a limited number of journalists for the ongoing World Cup 2023.
“The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has filed another formal protest with the ICC regarding visa delays for Pakistani journalists and the absence of a visa policy for Pakistan fans during the ongoing World Cup 2023,” the PCB stated.