Akhtar, popularly known as the Rawalpindi Express, said that unless and until it is known as to how many people are infected with the virus, no kind of sport can be played.
“If you ask me honestly, I do not know for how long the coronavirus outbreak will last, until and unless it is not known that how many people are infected, one cannot go ahead with any kind of cricket anywhere,” Akhtar said in a video posted on his YouTube channel.
“I do not see cricket being played for at least a year due to the coronavirus. I see the virus troubling us for one year, these are troublesome times, I just hope we come out of this stronger,” he added.
The 44-year-old also said that he does not think that bowlers will now be able to apply saliva on the cricket ball to make it shinier during cricket matches.
“I do not think that one can apply saliva on the ball now, we as bowlers apply saliva on the ball to make the ball shinier, the ball goes in the hands of everyone on the park, I saw a report of the ICC which said bowlers would not be able to apply saliva on the ball, Akhtar said.
“Cricket is a game which requires contact, if ICC is thinking about passing the law related to applying saliva on the ball, then I welcome the decision keeping coronavirus in mind,” he added.
Shining the ball is a major thing for bowlers in trying to extract some swing from the match. As the game starts swaying in favour of batsmen by each passing day, bowlers have to try everything they can in trying to trouble the batsmen.
The World Health Organisation had termed coronavirus as a ‘pandemic’ on March 11.