Pakistan's Mohammad Hafeez suspended from bowling in ECB tournaments due to illegal action

Hafeez last played for Pakistan in the ICC World Cup in July and featured in the T10 League recently in Doha.

Mohammad Hafeez
Mohammad Hafeez. (Photo Source: Twitter)

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Veteran Pakistan batting all-rounder Mohammad Hafeez was suspended from bowling in England’s domestic competition on Tuesday after his action was found illegal following an assessment done independently. According to a report that came out in ESPNcricinfo, the 39-year-old off-spinner’s action was found to be suspicious during a Vitality Blast (T20) match between his county Middlesex against Somerset on August 30. The on-field umpires gave a report on the action.

Hafeez, who last played for Pakistan in the ICC World Cup in July and featured in the T10 League recently in Doha, contested the findings of the assessment that observed that his elbow extension while bowling off-break to be exceeding the 15-degree tolerance limit.

A review group which heard his appeal at the Lord’s on Tuesday suspended him from bowling in England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) competitions and asked him to rectify his action, the report added. Hafeez, who played four games for Middlesex to score 115 runs at a strike rate of 112 plus and take two wickets while giving 8.64 runs per over after being roped in as a mid-season replacement for South African AB de Villiers, may seek a re-examination.

“I have received the ECB Bowling Review Group report on my bowling action,” the senior cricketer, who has scored over 12,000 international runs and taken nearly 250 wickets, said in a statement.

Mohammad Hafeez to try to become eligible to play in ECB events

“Despite identifying procedural testing flaws, which have been accepted by the review committee, as well as realising the findings will potentially affect my reputation as a world-proven all-rounder, I accept the Bowling Review Group findings. As per ECB regulations, I am ready to appear for independent analysis at an ICC-accredited centre, so that I become eligible to play in ECB-organised events,” he said.

Hafeez, who was first reported in 2005 and a number of times since then, was cleared to bowl in international cricket in May last year. However, senior New Zealand batsman Ross Taylor questioned the legality of Hafeez’s action during an ODI in Abu Dhabi in November last year.

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