Former India fast bowler Manoj Prabhakar is heavily in favour of ICC’s mulling use of foreign substances than saliva to maintain shine on the ball. The parent body is seriously contemplating legalised methods of tampering the ball instead of saliva or sweat once cricket resumes after the COVID-19 pandemic with Prabhakar believing the move will help the quicks stay impactful in the game. Also Read - ICC Bans Qadeer Khan For 5 Years For Corruption, Charges Mehardeep on Six Counts
“If one can’t shine the ball, what would bowlers like me do? If you can’t use saliva or sweat on the ball because it is dangerous, some other way has to be worked out. Without shine on the ball, bowlers will end up surrendering,” Prabhakar told Times of India. Also Read - Heath Streak banned for Eight Years for Breaching ICC's Anti-Corruption code
“There has to be a way out to help the bowlers. The ICC can decide on a substance or two and then look to implement it. Otherwise, medium-pacers in particular will have no future. All the developments in the game are always in favour of the batsmen.” Also Read - Bhuvneshwar Kumar Pips Rashid Khan And Sean Williams to Claim ICC Player of The Month Award
A fine exponent of swing bowling during his playing days, Prabhakar feels there’s a different type of oil which could be one of the options to be looked at. “Non-greasy oil can perhaps be used. Things like Vaseline and mint have been used in the past but that is not necessarily ideal,” he explained.
“The art of reverse swing and conventional swing is not appreciated. Even if external substances are allowed, everyone will not be able to swing the ball. There is a lot of skill involved. ”
While Prabhakar is confident that this is indeed the way forward for cricket, another former India pacer, TS Sekhar, now a renowned coach feels banning the use of saliva or sweat will make it tough of the bowlers are adhering to the new rules, if and when approved.
“I don’t think cricket will resume anytime soon. As for not using saliva or sweat on the ball is concerned, it is difficult to monitor. It is so natural for cricketers to do it. What if somebody uses saliva on the ball by mistake? Will you then change the ball every time? It can also lead to a dangerous situation where players are affected,” Sekhar told TOI.