Dubai: The International Cricket Council’s (ICC) Cricket Committee chaired by Anil Kumble recommended banning the usage of saliva to polish the match ball. It however noted that the risk of spread of the virus through sweat is “highly unlikely” and “saw no need to prohibit” the practice.
“The ICC Cricket Committee heard from the Chair of the ICC Medical Advisory Committee Dr Peter Harcourt regarding the elevated risk of the transmission of the virus through saliva, and unanimously agreed to recommend that the use of saliva to polish the ball be prohibited,” said the ICC in its statement.
“The committee also noted the medical advice that it is highly unlikely that the virus can be transmitted through sweat and saw no need to prohibit the use of sweat to polish the ball whilst recommending that enhanced hygiene measures are implemented on and around the playing field.”
The committee also recommended the appointment of local match officials in the short term due to the restrictions on travel around the world due to the pandemic. It also recommended the provision of an extra DRS appeal for a team in each format as an interim measure.
“Given the challenges of international travel with borders being closed, limited commercial flights and mandatory quarantine periods, the committee recommended that local match officials be appointed in the short-term.
“The appointments will continue to be made via the ICC from local Elite and International Panel referees and umpires. Where there are no Elite Panel match officials in the country, the best local International Panel match officials will be appointed.
“The committee also recommended that the use of technology is increased to support the appointments of a wider pool of umpires from around the world and has proposed an additional DRS review per team per innings is introduced in each format as an interim measure.”
“We are living through extraordinary times and the recommendations the committee have made today are interim measures to enable us to safely resume cricket in a way that preserves the essence of our game whilst protecting everyone involved,” said Kumble.
The recommendations will now be presented to the ICC Chief Executives’ Committee in early June for approval.