Spit banned but sweat okay to polish balls amid virus: ICC

Updated May 19, 2020

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Local match officials to be chosen to work around travel bans. — AFP/File
Local match officials to be chosen to work around travel bans. — AFP/File

DUBAI: The use of saliva to polish cricket balls is set to be prohibited as part of changes to regulations recommended by the sports world governing body during the coronavirus pandemic.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) said, however, that sweat can still be used to polish the ball because medical advice shows it is highly unlikely that the virus can be transmitted that way.

An ICC committee also recommended that local match officials be appointed in the short term given the challenges of international travel with borders being closed, limited commercial flights and mandatory quarantine periods.

If there are no local match officials available from the elite panel, the best local officials from the international panel will be chosen.

Officials appointed by the ICC havent come from the same country as the participating teams since 2002.

An additional DRS review per team per innings is also set to be introduced in each of crickets formats as an interim measure.

The recommendations of the committee will be presented to the ICC chief executives committee in June for approval.

“We are living through extraordinary times,” committee chair Anil Kumble said. “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.”

Published in Dawn, May 19th, 2020