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Thu Mar 30 22:23:31 SAST 2017

England demand answers after mint scandal

©The Daily Telegraph | 2016-11-28 08:01:15.0
Chris Woakes, who returns for the third Test after a slight knee injury, admitted that England players ate sweets while fielding to keep up energy levels. File photo
Image by: IAN KINGTON / AFP

England's cricketers will continue to eat sweets while fielding and have called for clarity from the International Cricket Council regarding the laws governing shining of the ball.

India were dragged into the ball-tampering furore this week when footage emerged of Virat Kohli using saliva to shine the ball while having what looked like a sweet in his mouth during the first Test in Rajkot.

He escaped punishment from the ICC. The incident would have gone unnoticed but for the punishment of South Africa captain Faf du Plessis for using a mint to shine one side of the ball during a Test match in Perth.

Players are allowed to use saliva to polish the ball under Law 42.3 provided no artificial substance is used.

Saliva is fine as long as it is not mixed with sugar. It is a grey area and Du Plessis could challenge his conviction legally.

Chris Woakes, who returns for the third Test after a slight knee injury, admitted that England players ate sweets while fielding to keep up energy levels. England carefully monitor the ball's condition, particularly in India where obtaining reverse swing is a huge advantage, and are meticulous over shining it with sweat and saliva.

Du Plessis scored a century at the Adelaide Oval after losing his match fee for the previous Test for the sweet incident.

"Everyone's said that everyone tries to shine the ball in a similar fashion. The fact that Faf du Plessis has been fined, the ICC are trying to make a stance on it. But I suppose there is quite a grey area there," said Woakes. "Hashim Amla said about him having chewing gum pretty much all day, is that deemed as wrong, as cheating? I'm not sure; I think it needs to be clarified.

"We won't be changing anything when we go out there this week. There's cameras always on you . there's nothing we need to change."

The nutritionists urge players to eat sweets or consume energy drinks, particularly in hot conditions.

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