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Ian Chappell urges to allow ball-tampering in cricket! Excuse me?

Ex Australian Cricket legend, Ian Chappell, says ball-tampering should be allowed in cricket. There has been numerous penalties on ball-tampering & a claim to allow them in cricket from such a legend raises many eyebrows. What kind of ball-tampering is he talking about? Will the penalties levied against bowlers for tampering be revoked? Interesting read!

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Former Australia captain Ian Chappell says some form of ball-tampering could be allowed in cricket, with saliva and sweat considered health risks due to the coronavirus crisis.

Bowlers regularly shine one side of the leather-clad ball to make the ball swing sideways in mid-flight and deceive the batsman.

But rubbing spit or sweat into the ball’s surface is expressly forbidden under new Australian Institute of Sport guidelines that set out the conditions for the game to resume.

Chappell has previously suggested that international captains be asked to come up with a list of natural substances bowlers feel would help them swing the ball.

Read more: Ball-tampering: Why it cut Australian cricket so deep

And, writing on the Cricinfo website, he said fans craved a genuine contest between bat and ball.

“From this list, the administrators should deem one method to be legal with all others being punishable as illegal,” he wrote.

“With cricket on hold, this is the ideal time to conduct the exercise. Using saliva and perspiration are now seen as a health hazard, so bowlers require something to replace the traditional methods of shining the ball.”

Australian ball manufacturer Kookaburra is developing a wax applicator that would allow bowlers to shine the ball.

The innovation involves using a sponge to apply small amounts of wax to the ball.

Current laws forbid the use of artificial substances to alter the ball, but there is a long history of tampering that goes well beyond bowlers spitting on the ball and rubbing it on their clothing.

Test players have been accused of using lozenges, petroleum jelly and resin to shine the ball, and also scuffing it with bottle tops, trouser zippers and grit.

The most notorious recent case was in 2018, when some Australian players attempted to alter the ball with sandpaper during a Test against South Africa in Cape Town, resulting in lengthy bans for those involved.

Changes in the leg-before-wicket (LBW) law

Chappell also said administrators should make a change to the leg-before-wicket (LBW) law in favour of bowlers.

Read more: South Africa pledge not to taunt Australia over tampering

“The new lbw law should simply say ‘any delivery that strikes the pad without first hitting the bat and, in the umpire’s opinion, would go on to hit the stumps is out regardless of whether or not a shot is attempted’,” the former batsman wrote.

There will be some noticeable changes to the game when cricket resumes from its Covid-19 hiatus with one of the major differences being the way the ball is polished.

t’s critical administrators produce the right response to the health challenges as swing bowling, along with wristspin, is a crucial part of attacking cricket.

Both skills place a high priority on wicket-taking and need to be encouraged at every opportunity.

An outswing bowler is seeking the edge to provide a catch behind the wicket. The inswinger is delivered in search of a bowled or an lbw decision.

In both cases, the bowler, in seeking the perfect ambush, is also providing the batsman with a driving opportunity as the ball needs to be pitched full to achieve the desired outcome.

He added: “These law changes would help redress any imbalance and make the game, particularly Test cricket, a far more entertaining spectacle.”

AFP with additional input by GVS News Desk