Australia’s premier fast bowler Pat Cummins while accepting the health risk associated with the usage of saliva urged the game’s custodians to come out with an alternate option to strike a balance between bat and ball. Cummins wants cricket`s lawmakers to approve the use of an artificial substance to shine the ball after a ban on the use of saliva was recommended in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Also Read - Dinesh Karthik Talks About Training Schedule Post COVID-19 Break, Says Need Minimum 4 Weeks to Achieve Match Fitness
The ICC’s Cricket Committee has already recommended a ban on the usage of saliva on the ball due to the risk of COVID-19 spread. Players have long used saliva and sweat to shine one side of the ball, altering the aerodynamics in an attempt to generate movement in the air as it flies towards the batsman. Also Read - Delhi Capitals' Pacer Kagiso Rabada Rues IPL Postponement, Clears Air Around His On-field Aggression
“If we remove saliva, we have to have another option,” the 27-year-old pacer was quoted as saying by cricket.com.au. Also Read - England Captain Joe Root in Doubt For First Test vs West Indies Due to ECB's COVID-19 Self-isolation Rule
“Sweat is not bad, but I think we need something more than that, ideally. Whatever that is, wax or I don’t know what.
“If that’s what that science is telling us, that it’s high risk using saliva … as long as we’re keeping other options open, whether that’s sweat or something artificial.”
Cummins, currently world’s no.1 Test bowler, said sweat is a viable option to keep the ball shinning. “We have to be able to shine the ball somehow so I’m glad they’ve let sweat remain,” he said.
“We’ve just got to make sure at the start of the spell we’re sweating and we’re nice and warm.”
Australian sports gear manufacturer Kookaburra had earlier this month claimed that it had developed a wax applicator which can keep the balls shinning without the usage of saliva or sweat.
Cummins, however, hopes that they can return to the usage of saliva in future as it is the best option to shine the ball.
“Hopefully we’ll get to a stage where saliva is deemed safe. Hopefully, we can go back to that, to how it was,” he said.