Generally speaking, whenever a luminary of the game speaks, you listen. You do not argue. You don’t also counter a view not because it’s coming from the horse’s mouth in a sense. But you do not resent a perspective unless and until it’s way off the mark.
The same can be attributed to timeless names of the sport such as Sachin, Waugh, Warne, Lara, Murali, Sir Gavaskar, Sir Ian Chappell, Harsha and the likes.
But when someone like Anil Kumble speaks, which isn’t all that often, you can’t help but sit back and listen with all due attention. Isn’t that right?
So recently when the legendary leg-spinner from India, the man responsible for 956 wickets in the game shared his views about the news of the saliva ban, a decision taken officially by the respected ICC, you didn’t counter it; you paid it a listen.
More so for the fact that today when Anil Kumble– an all-time legend of the game speaks- he does so from a position of authority. Lest it is forgotten by us that he is today the ICC Cricket Committee Chairman.
That being told, what was Anil Kumble’s view on the issue of the saliva ban?
For starters, it doesn’t seem like Kumble enjoyed view that’s currently the future of the use of saliva on the cricket ball. Not because he thinks the view is wrong or the step is toward a fundamental misdirection.
Rather, it’s got to do with a certain longevity of the idea, which from Anil Kumble’s point of discretion may not be the ideal choice.
So the respected leg spinner feels that the saliva ban is only as good an option as a temporary situation. A long-term solution is key to the issue toward finding a solution to the ball-shining matter.
Therefore, Anil Kumble has regarded the recent step taken by the ICC as an interim solution.
Speaking to the media on the matter, here’s what Anil Kumble had to say:
We did discuss that, but if you look back at the history of the game, I mean we have been very critical and we have been very focused on eliminating any external substances coming into the game whether you are literally legalising if you are looking to do that now which obviously has had a great impact over the last couple of years.
“ICC took a decision, but then cricket Australia took even a more tougher stance on what happened during that series between South Africa and Australia, so we did consider that but then this is only an interim measure and as long as we have hopefully control over COVID in a few months or a year’s time then I think things will go back to as normal as it can be.”
Nonetheless, what’s also important and must be given due significance- is that under no circumstance can the idea of applying saliva to the cricket ball be considered safe, especially in lines with the rather difficult situation the world is witnessing right now.
Isn’t it? Safety is the key priority right now. Cricket, therefore, needs to act vigilantly which it has.