ICC Cricket Committee led by Anil Kumble recently recommended a ban on the usage of saliva to shine the ball amid COVID-19 threat. In the post Coronavirus era, only sweat can be applied on the ball even as there were calls for the ICC to allow any artificial substance in order to keep the bowlers in the game. However, Kumble has made it clear that ban will be lifted once the virus subsides and the situation is back to normal.
After the committee’s recommendations, the ICC released the guidelines to play cricket post and during the pandemic suggesting the umpires to use gloves to handle the ball. England is likely to be become the first country to resume international cricket as they are hoping to start their home season against West Indies and Pakistan behind the closed doors.
Anil Kumble, while speaking in a Star Sports show Cricket Connected, cleared that if the Coronavirus is controlled in the next few months or a year, then they will lift the ban. “This is only an interim measure and as long as we have hopefully control over COVID in a few months or a year’s time then I think things will go back to as normal as it can be,” he said.
Committee also discussed the usage of external substance
The former India cricketer also informed that the committee discussed the usage of external substances like wax on the ball. But then he recalled the 2018 Newlands controversy when a sandpaper was found in Australia player Cameron Bancroft’s pocket on the field of play. It had created a massive furore and the Cricket Australia (CA), more than ICC, had taken a strict action banning the three players for nine months and one year.
Anil Kumble informed that they considered this incident and its repercussions before finally deciding not to allow any external substance to shine the ball as of now. “If you look back at the history of the game, I mean we have been very critical and we have been very focused on eliminating any external substances coming into the game.
“Whether you are literally legalising, if you are looking to do that now which obviously has had a great impact over the last couple of years. ICC took a decision but then cricket Australia took, even a more tougher stance on what happened during that series between South Africa and Australia, so we did consider that,” he added.
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