Indian speedster Umesh Yadav has spoken about the ban on the usage of saliva to shine the ball and said that it would be difficult to reverse-swing the ball, a craft he is considered master of on placid Indian wickets. However, he further stated that he was not worried much and would only look into it after hitting the training grounds.
“Yes, it will be difficult to suddenly start playing without the saliva. We haven’t started practising yet, once I get on the ground and practice playing without the use of saliva only then I will know how effective it is. With the old ball it’s still okay, but with the new ball, I don’t know how much it will shine minus the saliva,” Umesh said as quoted by IANS.
“As the white ball swings for a less time, so for T20s it’s okay. But the main problem will be when we will play Test matches. If we can’t use saliva then we will have to think of new techniques to make the ball swing. Once practice starts only then we will know how to tackle it,” he pointed.
The ICC Cricket Committee, led by former Indian captain Anil Kumble, had suggested the international governing body of cricket to temporarily ban the use of saliva on the ball to avoid the risk of a COVID-19 outbreak. The interim change was approved earlier last week week.
According to new ICC rules, players will not be permitted to use saliva to shine the ball and if a player does apply saliva to the ball, the umpires will manage the situation with some leniency during an initial period of adjustment for the players, but subsequent instances will result in the team receiving a warning.
The fielding team can be issued two warnings per innings and breaching them can award the batting team a penalty of 5 runs. For every time a bowler mistakenly applies saliva on the ball the umpires will be instructed to not continue the play without cleaning the ball.
International cricket, which has been on a halt since March following the outbreak of coronavirus, will resume with the three-Test series between England and West Indies, where all the matches will be played behind closed doors in “bio-secure environment”. The first Test is slated to be played at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton (July 8-12) with the second and third matches at Old Trafford in Manchester from July 16-20 and then July 24-28.