It’s not just the pacers who will be at a disadvantage due to the ban on use of saliva but spinners too will suffer as they won’t get the required drift during middle overs, feels India’s top wrist spinner Yuzvendra Chahal. The ICC has banned the use of saliva on ball as an interim health safety measure in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic — a move that has raised concerns about the game becoming even more batting friendly. “When you use a natural element like saliva, it helps pacers with swing and spinners with the drift,” Chahal said on ‘ESPNCricinfo’, specifically talking about white ball cricket.
Drift in cricketing terminology is the sideways movement in the air when a slow bowler tries to impart spin.
“If as a spinner, I cannot get drift in the middle overs, the batsmen will have it easy. This is something that will affect every bowler in the world. I will have to figure out a solution once I start bowling in the nets,” Chahal, who will be turning 30 next month, said.
The spinners also complement the pacers in shining the ball, said Chahal, who has 146 wickets in 94 games.
“Spinners use saliva too to maintain the shine of the ball because we are aware that pacers will bowl after us or are bowling from the other end,” he added.
“And I would like to maintain the condition of the ball in a way that it helps pacers whenever they come. Pacers also think the same way. When they see spinners coming, they refrain from shining the ball too much. This is how we plan things.”
On to his own game and the wiry leg-spinner said one advice from Harbhajan Singh during his first IPL stint at the Mumbai Indians has stayed with him forever.
“…Harbhajan Singh once told me – back your skills as a bowler. My strengths are varying my pace and beating the batsman in flight.
“I have seen a lot of spinners change their actions while bowling at the Chinnaswamy. I can sense their fear, I then tell this to the batsmen in my team so that they can attack him,” Chahal said.
He feels that his attacking instincts are considered beneficial by both Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma.
“Virat Kohli or Rohit Sharma, whoever the captain is, they want us to pick up wickets. Even if I concede 70 runs in my 10 overs but pick up three wickets in the middle overs, it will benefit the team,” said Chahal.
“The pace of the game also quickens when spinners are operating from both ends. If there is turn on offer, it becomes difficult to play spinners in the middle overs. We have always believed in going for wickets in the middle overs,” Chahal added.
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