The ICC Cricket Committee, chaired by former India leg-spinner Anil Kumble, also proposed appointment of non-neutral match officials for all international matches.
The International Cricket Council Cricket Committee, chaired by former India leg-spinner Anil Kumble, recommended a ban on the use of saliva to shine the ball, to mitigate the risk posed by the coronavirus. The ICC said in a press release part from recommending a ban on saliva, the committee also proposed the appointment of non-neutral match officials for all international matches. “The ICC Cricket Committee today recommended changes to ICC regulations to mitigate the risks posed by the COVID-19 virus, and protect the safety of players and match officials,” read a press release from the ICC.
“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,” it added.
However, while proposing a ban on the use of saliva, the committee stated that it is highly unlikely for the coronavirus to transmit from one person to another through sweat, hence it didn’t recommend a ban on the use of sweat to shine the ball.
“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 release added.
With international travels taking a hit due to the coronavirus pandemic, the committee proposed that the ICC should consider appointing non-neutral umpires and referees for all international matches.
“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 release added.
Another major change the committee proposed was providing teams with an additional DRS per innings in all three formats.
“The Committee also proposed an additional DRS review per team per innings is introduced in each format as an interim measure.”
The committee made these recommendations after the conference call on Monday during which it discussed various issues related to COVID-19.
These recommendations will now be presented before the ICC Chief Executives’ Committee in early June for approval.
“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, who chaired the virtual meeting.