DUBAI: Former Pakistan captain M Hafeez was Thursday suspended from bowling in international matches with immediate effect due to illegal action. The International Cricket Council (ICC) announced that an independent assessment has found Hafeez ‘ bowling action to be illegal.
According to an ICC press release, majority of Hafeez ‘ deliveries exceeded the 15 degrees level of tolerance permitted under the regulations. In accordance with article 11.1 of the ICC illegal bowling regulations, Hafeez ‘ international suspension will be recognised and enforced by all National Cricket Federations for domestic cricket events played in their own jurisdiction. However, pursuant to article 11.5 of the regulations and with the consent of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), Hafeez may be able to bowl in domestic cricket events played under the auspices of the PCB.
Hafeez and Pakistan are lucky that there isn’t much cricket planned for Pakistan in the next 6 months. Hafeez won’t be able to bowl in the tour of New Zealand but he might be allowed to bowl in the Pakistan Super League (PSL) subject to permission from Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB). Earlier, Saeed Ajmal had been banned, however when he returned to the fore he was not the Ajmal of old. He announced his retirement last week from all forms of cricket
Hafeez came under the radar during the third One-Day International against Sri Lanka on October 18 and had undergone an independent assessment of his bowling action on November 1 at Loughborough University. With the suspension in place, the 37-year-old can apply for a re-assessment after modifying his bowling action in accordance with clause 4.5 of the regulations.
Prior to this, the right-arm bowler was first suspended from bowling in December 2014. Following which he was suspended the second time for his illegal action in the Galle Test against Pakistan in June 2015. Due to his two-time suspension within 24 months, he was suspended from bowling in international cricket for 12 months from July 2015. Hafeez has played 50 Tests, 195 ODIs and 81 T20Is for Pakistan and has picked 52, 136 and 49 wickets respectively.
Veteran all-rounder Hafeez has promised to be back with a remodeled bowling action soon. He posted a big update on Twitter wherein he vowed to be back with a remodeled action yet again. He even used the hashtag #no1allrounder, indicating his rankings in the all-rounders’ department in the shortest format of the game.
He expressed that he is saddened to know about the ban but it will not pull him down. Hafeez stressed that he will not give up. He had worked hard for his new action and will work harder to remodel it yet again. He aspires to serve his nation more and achieve greater heights.
“Saddened to know the result of my bowling action from ICC , it would never pull me down , wil never give up , worked so hard to remodelled it & wil work again twice harder to get better to serve my beloved country Pakistan & Achieve MORE #NO1allrounder,” tweeted Hafeez .
Meanwhile, Hafeez has withdrawn himself from the ongoing Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) after being suspended from bowling following an independent assessment of his bowling action found his action to be illegal. Hafeez said that he has decided against going to Dhaka and joining his BPL team Comilla Victorians for the remainder of the league. “I will stay here and work on my bowling action,” he said.