India’s fast bowler Umesh Yadav has stated that he would tackle the saliva issue when he gets back to practice. Yadav feels that the saliva ban will not make an impact in the T20I or ODI matches as the white ball stops swinging after some overs. However, the Vidharbha pacer believes the saliva ban will make the bowlers’ job difficult in the Test matches.
The fast bowlers rely heavily on the use of the saliva to maintain the shine on the ball. The shine helps the bowler in the conventional swing. Yadav is confident that he would be able to get reverse swing with the old ball and he has slingy action which helps him.
Meanwhile, saliva ban has drawn mixed reactions from the cricket pundits. Many former and current players reckon that the ICC should come up with an alternative to help the bowlers. ICC Cricket Committee headed by Anil Kumble had suggested the ban of saliva after consulting with the medical experts. Kumble has also mentioned that the pitches can be made bowlers friendly during the Covid-19 era.
Umesh Yadav said while talking to IANS, “Yes, it will be difficult to suddenly start playing without the saliva. We haven’t started practising yet, once I get on the ground and practice playing without the use of saliva only then I will know how effective it is. With the old ball it’s still okay, but with the new ball, I don’t know how much it will shine minus the saliva.
“As the white ball swings for a less time, so for T20s it’s okay. But the main problem will be when we will play Test matches. If we can’t use saliva then we will have to think of new techniques to make the ball swing. Once practice starts only then we will know how to tackle it,” he pointed.
Meanwhile, Umesh Yadav has done well in the home conditions whereas his record overseas hasn’t been that impressive. The right-arm has impressed with his pace but he needs to work on his consistency. The Indian pacer recently completed 10 years of International cricket and thus he has all the experience under his belt.
It would be interesting to note how the fast bowlers will adjust to the saliva ban once they get back into action. Umesh Yadav would like to take his time when he returns back to practice. Indian bowling coach Bharat Arun has predicted that fast bowlers will take six to eight weeks to be ready for action.
The 32-year old pacer has scalped 144 wickets in 46 Test matches at an average of 30.47.