x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

UAE coach Kabir confident Nasir Aziz action will be cleared

Kabir has invited Aziz to bowl in the nets today and will be recording his action for analysis, he says he has not noticed anything untoward about the bowler's action.

Nasir Aziz, the UAE off-spinner, took three wickets in a recent game against Namibia.
Nasir Aziz, the UAE off-spinner, took three wickets in a recent game against Namibia.

DUBAI // Kabir Khan, the UAE cricket coach, is confident Nasir Aziz will be cleared after being reported for a suspect bowling action.

The off-spinner, 24, was reported by the two on-field umpires, Sarika Prasad and Buddhi Pradhan, along with Gary Baxter, the third umpire, following the UAE's win over Namibia in the final of the International Cricket Council's (ICC) World Cricket League Division Two.

Aziz took three wickets in the game, but he will now have to undergo an assessment of his bowling action. The Emirates Cricket Board (ECB) have to make arrangements for this within 21 days of him being reported on Sunday.

Once the assessment is complete, the ECB must formally report back to the ICC, the sports world governing body, with the results. Aziz is free to bowl in the meantime.

Kabir has invited Aziz to bowl in the nets today and will be recording his action for analysis, but the former Pakistan player said he has not noticed anything untoward about the bowler's action.

"It is disappointing but, to be honest, it is nothing final," Kabir said.

"He has just been reported for suspect action. It's not that he has been called for a no ball.

"I had a look at his action and I have invited him [today] to have a look at it again. I will record a few deliveries of him and just look at them in slow motion. I hope there won't be anything which would stop him from bowling or suspending him.

"We will go through the normal ICC procedure, which is to perform a bowling assessment by the Emirates Cricket Board. It gives us 21 days.

"The independent bowling analysts, whoever they are, will prepare a report. If the report is clear, he is cleared."

ICC bowling regulations set a limit of 15 degrees of permissible straightening of the elbow joint. This refers between the point at which the bowling arm passes above shoulder height and also the point at which the ball is released. Kabir is confident Aziz's bowling action is well within the laws.

"Whatever the umpires picked, or the match referee picked, it [the match] wasn't televised," Kabir said. "So nobody can say what angle he was bowling. We have to record his bowling and watch it in slow motion.

"If there is any angle, the ICC obviously allows a certain degree, if he is under that, then obviously he should be OK.

"I personally think that so far, from what I have seen of him, bowling his normal off-spinners and the doosra, I never saw any jerk or anything of that sort to suggest he was throwing the ball.

"The umpires, however, have noticed something; they reported it to the match referee and the match referee reported it to the ICC. It's just a normal thing. They suspected it and they reported it.

"He is not the first person to be reported. Lots of Test cricketers from Pakistan, India and Sri Lanka have been reported. They have been checked and obviously cleared as well. They have played a lot of cricket for their countries.

"I personally believe there is not a lot of suspicion about his action and I think he will be cleared."

Bowlers who ICC looked at

Players who have been reported to the ICC because of official concerns about their bowling actions but never called in a match. They were all cleared to continue bowling without sanction

• Harbhajan Singh (IND)
• Saeed Ajmal (PAK)
• Kumar Dharmasena (SL)
• Mohammad Hafeez (PAK)
• Jermaine Lawson (WI)
• Brett Lee (AUS)
• Shoaib Malik (PAK)
• Saqlain Mushtaq (PAK)


Players who have been reported to the ICC because of official concerns about their bowling actions and subsequently sanctioned

• Shoaib Akhtar (PAK) – in December 1999 but overturned almost immediately
• Shabbir Ahmed (PAK) – in December 2005 for 12 months
• James Kirtley (ENG) – in October 2005 by England and Wales Cricket Board
• Johan Botha (RSA) – in February 2006 by ICC until passing a subsequent test to prove that action has been rectified. In November 2006, he was cleared to resume bowling at international level. He was again reported in April 2009, and his doosra was banned
• Abdur Razzak (BAN) – December 2008 but lifted in March 2009

arizvi@thenational.ae