By Amlan Chakraborty
BIRMINGHAM, England (Reuters) – India captain Virat Kohli, a fashionista off the field, gave a resounding thumbs-up to his team’s new orange jersey which they will be wearing in Sunday’s World Cup group match against England at Edgbaston.
The ‘Men in Blue’ will be wearing an orange-blue jersey to distinguish themselves from hosts England who wear a lighter version of blue.
The choice of orange has sparked debates back home with some opposition politicians accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s right-wing Hindu nationalist party of pushing its trademark saffron hue on the team.
“I quite like it, I think it’s right up there. For me it would be eight,” Kohli told reporters after being asked to rate the jersey from one to 10.
“Honestly, I’m not saying it for the sake of it. I really like it. The contrast is very nice.”
Four other teams in the tournament have had to wear a different colours to avoid looking like their opposition.
Accordingly, blue-shirted Afghanistan opted for red in three of their matches.
South Africa, who usually wear green, chose gold for two matches while Sri Lanka swapped their blue for yellow for a couple of games.
Bangladesh, who were green, will don red in their July 5 match against Pakistan at the Lord’s.
A stylish batsman on the field and a fashion-conscious celebrity off it, Kohli has designed sneakers in collaboration with sportswear giant Puma.
The 30-year-old satisfied with the fit and welcomed the break from usual blue.
“The fit is great, it’s a nice change,” he said.
“For one game, it’s fine. I don’t think permanently we’d be heading in that direction because blue has always been our colour, very proud to wear that. For a change and looking at the occasion, it’s a very smart kit.”
(Reporting by Amlan Chakraborty in Birmingham; editing by Christian Radnedge)