Former Australian pacer Brett Lee doesn’t mind the ICC exploring ways to popularise Test cricket but says it’s “ridiculous” to see players wearing names and numbers on their white flannels.
Lee’s critical opinion comes a day after Adam Gilchrist, the 42-year-old’s former teammate, called the latest innovation “rubbish”.
Earlier this year, the International Cricket Council (ICC) allowed Test-playing nations to have the players sport their names and numbers on their jerseys.
While the move found many takers, a few did not seem convinced. “For what it’s worth I’m strongly against the players numbers & names appearing on the back of test cricket shirts! I think it looks ridiculous. @ICC I love the changes you’ve made to cricket in general, but on this occasion you’ve got it wrong,” Lee tweeted.
“In fact, I’ll take my apology back. The names and numbers are rubbish. Enjoy the series everyone,” Gilchrist said on Thursday while wishing the players luck for the Ashes series.
In another tweet, the former wicketkeeper-batsman said, “Outstanding. We are underway. Sorry to sound old fashioned but not liking the names and numbers.”
Out of favour Indian off-spinner R Ashwin also took an indirect dig on the decision.
“Should the sweaters have numbers on them too??#ashes2019,” Ashwin tweeted. The ICC move is aimed at popularising the longest format of the game. England and Australia became the first two cricketing nations to wear names and numbers on their jerseys for the first time in the 142-year history of Test cricket. The English county sides as well as the Australian state sides playing the Sheffield Shield are used to wearing whites with names and numbers on the back. But this will be an altogether new experience for the Indian team, which will play the matches of the World Test Championship against the West Indies wearing white shirts with their names and numbers printed on them.