'If you need a slip during the game, would you not employ it?' - Irfan Pathan questions ICC's new guidelines

‘If you need a slip during the game, would you not employ it?’ – Irfan Pathan questions ICC’s new guidelines

Safety cannot be compromised but regularly sanitising hands during the game will be too much to ask from the players, according to Irfan.

Irfan Pathan
Irfan Pathan. (Photo Source: CricTracker)

Cricket in the post-coronavirus world is anticipated to be a completely different picture once the sport resumes. To curb the outbreak of COVID-19, ICC recently issued a few guidelines to be followed by the players once cricket restarts in the near future.

According to ICC’s ‘back to cricket’ guidelines, it would be necessary for players to follow a 14-day pre-match isolation training camps to ensure the safety of players. The sport is expected to undergo a huge makeover as ICC has issued a string of guidelines, leaving the cricketing fraternity to ponder over the practicality of these rules.

Some of the guidelines issued by ICC mention rules like hand sanitising when in contact with the ball, no loo or shower breaks while training, minimising time spent in the changing room before and after a game, no use of saliva on the ball and no handing over of personal items during a game.

While some members of the cricketing fraternity have lauded these guidelines for inducing hygiene into the game, some members have questioned the applicability of these rules.

Social distancing difficult to follow in team sport: Irfan Pathan

Former India international Irfan Pathan, while raising his concern over the guidelines, said that following social distancing in a team sport like cricket will be a tedious task for all the players.

“Social distancing is very doable in an individual sport but very tough in a team sport like cricket and football. If you need a slip during the game, would you not employ it?

“If the team is going through a 14-day quarantine and is being tested for COVID-19, I am fine with that process. Now, after that, if we have more guidelines for the players during the game, then you are making things complicated. Then there is no point of a quarantine period,” said Irfan as quoted by India Today.

Irfan backed the idea of 14-day quarantine for the safety of players. However, according to the bowling all-rounder, things might get a bit complicated if too many rules are induced into the game.

Safety cannot be compromised but regularly sanitising hands during the game will be too much to ask from the players, according to Pathan. He suggested that ICC can shorten the process of giving the ball to the bowler.

“You can shorten the process of giving the ball to the bowler. Instead of the usual chain (wicket-keeper to cover fielder to bowler), the keeper can straight away give the ball to the bowler but even then the bowler will have to sanitise hands six times in an over,” said Irfan.