International Cricket Council’s (ICC) Cricket Committee chairman Anil Kumble on Wednesday said cricket has an advantage over other sports in the sense that the pitch could be prepared in such a way where bat-ball balance is maintained.
“Our intention was to start cricket. We can’t call it normal but then this is the new normal that all of us need to get used to,” Kumble said during a webinar organised by FICCI. “Safety and security of players is a major concern. With that in mind, and based on medical advice, we believe saliva could be the major contributor to carrying this disease.
“So, we banned the use of saliva although it is the second nature in cricket. That is why players will find it hard to manage. In training, they will have to start slowly. It is not only about coming back and playing but also about coming back after two-and-a-half months of lockdown,” said legendary leg-spinner and former India captain Kumble.
“Especially if you are a bowler, you need to have those overs under your belt before you start competing. So, it is important you slowly and gradually comeback to normalcy as much as you can. The advantage that cricket has over other sports is that there is an element of an adjustable variance in the pitch which many sports don’t have.
“All these years, we have been very stringent on what to use and what not to use on the ball. In cricket, you can manage the pitch in such a way that you bring about a better balance between bat and ball. The idea was to kick-start cricket. There will be challenges and you have to go one game at a time,” added the 49-yearold veteran.
Kumble opined players need to take part in warm-up matches and get themselves loaded before approaching a Test match after such a lengthy break. “Players will have to have some sort of back up to load the body. It is not easy for bowlers to bowl 30 overs and it is also tough for batsmen. So, teams must probably have a few friendly games.”