Guwahati, Tuesday, June 2, 2020
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‘We need an alternative to saliva’


 
 NEW DELHI, June 1: Premier India pacer Jasprit Bumrah won’t miss the hugs and high-fives as part of a wicket celebration but he will certainly miss applying saliva on the ball and feels an alternative should be provided to maintain the red cherry.

The ICC Cricket Committee, led by former India captain Anil Kumble, recommended a ban on using saliva on the ball as an interim measure to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the Committee did not allow the use of artificial substances as a substitute move.

The new rule makes life tougher for the bowlers and Bumrah, like many former and current fast bowlers, feels there ought to be an alternative.

“I was not much of a hugger anyway and not a high-five person as well, so that doesn’t trouble me a lot. The only thing that interests me is the saliva bit,” said Bumrah in a chat with Ian Bishop and Shaun Pollock on ICC’s video series ‘Inside Out’.

“I don’t know what guidelines we’ll have to follow when we come back, but I feel there should be an alternative,” he added.

Bumrah said not being able to use saliva makes the game more batsman-friendly.

“If the ball is not well maintained, it’s difficult for the bowlers. The grounds are getting shorter and shorter, the wickets are becoming flatter and flatter.

“So we need something, some alternative for the bowlers to maintain the ball so that it can do something – maybe reverse in the end or conventional swing.” – PTI

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