Indian pacer Mohammed Shami on Tuesday said he can still get reverse swing going even after the proposed ban of use of saliva, provided the shine is properly maintained.

The International Cricket Council is set to implement a ban on the use of saliva to shine the ball due to the risk attached to the spread of Covid-19.

“There will be difficulties,” Shami said in an Instagram chat with Rohit Juglan.

“We have been accustomed to using saliva since childhood. It’s deeply ingrained ... If you are a fast bowler, instinctively you apply saliva to shine the ball. But yes, if you can maintain the shine of the dry ball, it will definitely reverse.”

The ICC Cricket Committee headed by Anil Kumble, however, has said players can use sweat to polish the ball. Shami thinks that will not help a fast bowler.

“Sweat and saliva work differently. I don’t think it [sweat] will help. I never tried bowling without saliva. Now because of Covid-19 pandemic, it’s very important to stop using saliva,” said Shami.

Also read: Shami recounts making Dhoni angry over a poor delivery

Shami said his teammates have missed the presence of former captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni on and off the field.

“I played in all the formats under him barring the IPL. With regard to guidance, he will always treat his teammates in such a way that you won’t even feel that he is such a superstar.

“He is such a big player. I have a lot of memories with him. Even now, we think ‘Mahi Bhai will come and it will be fun playing,’” he said.

Dhoni has been on a sabbatical since India’s World Cup semifinal exit in July last year and he was slated for a comeback in IPL, which has now been postponed indefinitely due to COVID-19 pandemic.

“One thing I like is he [Dhoni] likes to sit with everyone and have dinner. There are always two-four people with him. We chat till late night, and these are the things that one misses.”

With the fate of T20 World Cup in Australia still undecided, Shami said the players would look to play a tournament before landing there directly.

“We are not machines; can’t just switch on and off. As a sportsman, your body needs to get into rhythm. No one has touched bat and ball in this period. So a 10-15 days camp or a couple of series before the World Cup will be helpful to get back the momentum.”

Shami said he’s looking forward to the upcoming four-match Test series Down Under later this year having played a key role in India’s historic triumph in 2018-’19.

“We had partied long with team and family members on the top floor. We remember that in that series, no one played selfishly. We want to take challenge anywhere. It will be one to watch and play for,” he said.

Shami rated his hat-trick in India’s match against Afghanistan in the World Cup last year as the best moment of his career.

The 30-year-old, who has had a few injury setbacks in his career, explained how he perfected the art of bowling with seam upright by throwing a kookaburra seam up to the ceiling fan when he had a fractured knee.

“I took a Kookaburra and threw it at ceiling fan so that it comes back with seam kissing the fan. I kept doing that for six-seven months lying in my bed with fractured knee,” he said.