Pakistan fast bowling legend Wasim Akram feels it won’t be a good idea to have ICC Men’s T20 World Cup without spectators as it robs a global event of the atmosphere it deserves.Also Read - Saudi Plans to Impose Penalties, Travel Ban on Its Citizens For Visiting ‘Red List’ Countries
There were reports of ICC agreeing to reschedule this year’s showpiece event in wake of the coronavirus pandemic before it released a statement to deny the same. A decision in this regard was to be taken last month but ICC deferred it to June 10 when it’s to meet again. Also Read - Centre Writes To States, Seeks Report On Number of Deaths Due to Oxygen Shortage During 2nd Wave
“Personally, I don’t think it’s a good idea. I mean, how could you have a cricket World Cup without spectators,” Akram told The News on Thursday. “A World Cup is all about big crowds, spectators coming from all parts of the globe to support their teams. It’s all about atmosphere and you cannot get it behind closed doors.” Also Read - IMF Projects India’s Growth Rate At 8.5% For 2022, Says Economy Downgraded Due to COVID 2nd Wave
The logistics and potential health risk that the event of such a scale could entail are among the factors being considered before making the final call.
Akram wants ICC to wait for a more suitable time to host the event.
“So I believe that they (ICC) should wait for a more suitable time and once this pandemic subsides and restrictions are eased then we can have a proper World Cup,” he said.
Akram, one of the greatest fast bowlers to have played the game, also weighed in on the ongoing debate over banning saliva to shine the ball as part of strict health measures.
However, there are concerns that unless a suitable alternative isn’t found, the bowlers will be find themselves at a great disadvantage.
“I’m sure fast bowlers won’t like it if they are stopped from using saliva to shine the ball. They are allowing sweat but I can say for sure that it isn’t the same,” he said. You shine the ball with saliva and sweat is just something of an add-on, a top-up. Too much use of sweat will leave the cricket ball too wet.”
“I believe that they will need to find a reasonable solution. But I would say that they will need to find a quick fix to this problem,” he added.