The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has brought worldwide cricketing activities to a standstill. Due to the contagious nature of the disease, the International Cricket Council (ICC) are reportedly contemplating to legalise ball-tampering in order to prohibit bowlers from using sweat and saliva on the cricket ball. The discussion has drawn mixed reactions from former and active cricketers alike with Indian cricketer Harbhajan Singh stating that the use of saliva is a must and Vaseline is not an ideal replacement.
After the likes of David Warner, Michael Holding, Shoaib Akhtar and Yuzvendra Chahal, Indian pacer Jaydev Unadkat became the latest cricketer to voice his opinion on the issue.
India and Rajasthan Royals star Jaydev Unadkat believes that using saliva on the ball during limited-overs matches is not necessary as the reverse swing has never been a big factor in white-ball cricket. In an interview with PTI, Unadkat added the fact that there are two new balls in ODIs for 25 overs each. He said that the lacquer in white-ball can remain shiny even by rubbing it on trousers but the same cannot be done with the red-ball, i.e. during Test matches.
Jaydev Unadkat said that the red ball demands more saliva and this is why Test matches could be more at risk than limited-overs cricket once the game resumes. He emphasised on the importance of the use of sweat and saliva on red-ball in order to maintain its shine as it is being used for 80 overs in a day. Therefore, Unadkat feels that precautions must be implemented in Tests by the ICC.
On April 23, Jaydev Unadkat took to Twitter and uploaded an image of himself with his Saurashtra colleagues Ravindra Jadeja and Cheteshwar Pujara. In the caption, the left-arm pacer described Ravindra Jadeja as one of the “greatest all-rounders” of all time. The cricketer is currently home-bound as the coronavirus-induced India lockdown continues to be in effect.
Jaydev Unadkat is expected to reprise his role for Rajasthan Royals in the now-postponed Indian Premier League (IPL 2020) season. The left-arm pacer was re-purchased by the Royals at the auction after they released him during the trading window. Rajasthan Royals acquired the cricketer for US$396,537 (₹3 crore).