Accusing the International Cricket Council (ICC) of discrimination against Pakistan cricketers, Saeed Ajmal said that he should have taken legal action against the world body for banning him from bowling. (More Cricket News)
Ajmal, 42, was once ranked world’s number one bowler in ODIs and T20 International cricket. But his career was mired in controversy after being reported for suspect action, first in 2009 during an ODI match against Australia in the UAE. Then, the off-spinner was forced to change his bowling action in 2014, and eventually retired in 2017.
In a hard-hitting interview with PakPassion.net, Ajmal said that he "should have taken legal action against the ICC for banning" him from bowling" and claimed that he "would have won that case."
And he explained why:
"From what I understand, the location of the computer chip which is installed on the body of the bowler can determine if the player passes or fails his bowling action test. The location of the chip on the bowler’s body can mean a difference of 5 or 6 degrees in terms of permissible straightening of the elbow joint which places a big question mark on the whole process," Ajmal said.
Further blaming the ICC for adopting a half-cooked procedure, Ajmal said that "the results of all those measurements are pushed through a ‘black box’ to determine the legality of an action." He added that the procedure is "a complete mystery" and "there is nothing which can be said with 100 percent certainty".
"How can a bowler’s action be deemed illegal based on this testing procedure? You can only have that level of confidence when the ICC can clearly explain how the procedure works," he pressed.
To drive home his claim for ICC's discrimination, Ajmal mentioned the example of fellow Mohammad Hafeez.
"Look at what has been done to Mohammad Hafeez who had been bowling so well [in] international cricket. The poor guy cannot bowl properly due to all these restrictions. Yet we have others, non-Pakistanis, who are bowling freely whilst our guys are being banned for illegal actions," Ajmal said.
Ajmal made his international debut in 2008 and played 35 Tests, 113 ODIs and 64 matches, taking 178, 184 and 85 wickets respectively.
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