Sydney, May 5 (IANS) Amid the ongoing debate of banning usage of saliva and sweat for shining the cricket ball in order to minimise the risk of COVID-19 transmission, Australian ball manufacturer Kookaburra has developed a wax applicator that would allow balls to be shined without using sweat or saliva.
According to a report in Sydney Morning Herald, Kookaburra has been busy working on a compound that would help bowlers avoid becoming disadvantaged in a post-coronavirus context and it will be ready to use within a month.
“The most effective mitigating action to avoid risk would be to introduce a temporary ban on the traditional shining method. This could be immediately introduced, enabling cricket to resume as soon as it is safe,” Kookaburra managing director Brett Elliott said.
“We've been working on a product to replace the traditional methods of polishing a ball that could be controlled and managed by the match umpire; we have developed a unique wax formula for polishing a cricket ball.”
According to Elliot, a pocket-size sponge applicator would enable umpires or players to apply a thin layer of wax which could then be rubbed and polished to enhance the shine on the ball.
He further said that the compound is yet to be tested in match conditions but it could be available in a month and be used as a short to medium term solution for shining the ball.
Cricket, when it gets going again after the COVID-19 pandemic, is supposed to resume with all the necessary precautions in order to save players from getting the virus. And the ICC is said to be pondering over ways to maintain the condition of the ball and keep the bowlers in the game while legalising usage of foreign substances.
According to the existing laws of cricket, use of artificial substances to alter the ball is forbidden.