International Cricket Council guidelines for cricket resumption amid COVID-19 pandemic

The ICC has also published guidelines for the safe resumption of cricket to assist its members in restarting cricket activity in their countries. 

International Cricket Council guidelines for cricket resumption amid COVID-19 pandemic

New Delhi: The International Cricket Council (ICC) on Friday (May 22) issued comprehensive guidelines for the resumption of cricket around the world as governments have decided to started to relax the restrictions in the wake of coronavirus crisis, according to an official statement. 

The ICC has also published guidelines for the safe resumption of cricket to assist its members in restarting cricket activity in their countries. 

The ICC Medical Advisory Committee has developed a comprehensive document “ICC Back to Cricket Guidelines” in consultation with Member Medical Representatives to provide guidance for the safe resumption of community cricket, domestic professional cricket, and international cricket.

It provides a framework with practical suggestions on how members can resume cricket in a manner that protects against the risk of transmission of or infection with the COVID-19 virus.

The ICC also extends advice to its members to use these guidelines as the basis to create their own policies for return to cricket activity in compliance with local and national government regulations (which should always take precedence) and to ensure the cricket community applies the necessary safety measures when resuming cricket.

It has set out specific guidelines for bowlers, considering they run the highest risk of getting injured if proper care is not taken in their return from a lengthy period of inactivity. These guidelines include the suggestion to the cricket boards to involve a larger squad, to achieve the demands of the sport once it resumes.

The ICC also suggests format-specific training periods required for bowlers all over the world. The boards have been asked to allow for a minimum of 5-6 weeks of training, with the last three weeks of it involving bowling at match intensity for T20Is. 

For ODIs, the minimum preparation period is of six weeks, and a similar phase of match intensity practice. For Tests, the ICC recommends about two months of preparation (8 to 12 weeks), and the last 4-5 weeks of match intensity practice.

Notably, ICC recommends the appointment of Chief Medical Officers, 14-day isolation training camps in its guidelines for the resumption of international cricket.

The ICC’s Medical Advisory Committee, established in 2017, provides expert advice in sports medicine issues in international cricket. The four-member committee which is chaired by Dr Peter Harcourt includes representation from different disciplines within sports medicine and from different cricketing regions.