If players were taking no notice of the International Cricket Council’s player rankings for Tests and ODIs they will now be forced to sit up and take notice. The top ranked Indian bowler, batsman and all-rounder in the two lists will automatically be a part of the ICC's International Registered Testing Pool (IRTP) under the strengthened anti-doping code that the ICC has accepted.
What this means is that the players in this pool have to be available for out of competition testing throughout the year.
To this end, each player will have to maintain a confidential online profile that will allow the ICC to keep track of their movements 365 days a year. The online profile, called the Agencywide Documents Access and Management System (ADAMS profile) will then serve as a unique document that will contain all relevant medical details for a player.
At the moment the Indian players in this list are Harbhajan Singh, Gautam Gambhir, Irfan Pathan, Zaheer Khan, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Yuvraj Singh, Munaf Patel, Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag. Women cricketers Jhulan Goswami and Mithali Raj are also part of the same program. Membership of the IRTP comes into full force on April 1, 2009 and will be reviewed on a yearly basis.
A total of 72 cricketers (9 from each of the 8 Test playing nations) will be part of the IRTP at any given time. The first group of players have been asked to make themselves available for an orientation session that will familiarise them with their obligations to the ICC and the World Anti Doping Agency in this regard. What's more, the players are expected to keep national team physio Nitin Patel in the loop in this regard.
The ICC has also notified various boards that even players outside the IRTP are liable to be subjected to “out of competition” or “no advance” testing as this is “at the core of effective doping control in sport.” However, only those in the IRTP have to keep the ICC posted about their whereabouts through the year.