Jasprit Bumrah explains how the ban of saliva is affecting bowlers

Jasprit Bumrah

Jasprit Bumrah talked about how the ban of saliva usage affects the fielding team in terms of maintaining the ball. In the wake of COVID-19 pandemic, use of saliva to shine the ball has been banned by ICC.

Indian bowlers had to toil hard on the first day of the Chennai Test against England as the visitors finished the day on 263-3. After the day’s play, Jasprit Bumrah talked about how using just sweat isn’t an effective way to shine the ball. He said:

“The ball did become soft after a while, and the wicket is on flatter side with the bounce being less. You are left with limited options (to shine ball). We are trying to figure out what we can do with the limited things on hand, at that time. It becomes difficult when the ball becomes soft and doesn’t shine really well because of new COVID-19 rules; we can’t use saliva, very difficult during that time to maintain the ball.”

Teams often use saliva on one side of the ball to make it heavier, which in turn helps it in reverse swinging. However, we didn’t see much reverse swing on offer during the day’s play, and Bumrah explained why.

“In India, the ball gets scuffed up easily. So to make the ball heavy, you have to shine one side sometimes with sweat and it doesn’t really serve the purpose. You can’t make one side heavy with sweat, and it doesn’t really work that way. But these are the rules, and we have to make do with what we have at the moment,” added Bumrah.

Jasprit Bumrah turned out to be India’s most successful bowler on day 1, picking two of the three England wickets. The right-arm fast bowler trapped Dan Lawrence lbw in the first session for a duck.

After that, the seamer had to be patient throughout the day as the pitch wasn’t offering much. Bowling the final over of the day, Jasprit Bumrah dismissed a well set Dom Sibley for 87 with a well-directed yorker to give Indians some joy at the end of day’s play. Joe Root is still at the crease on 128.

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