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February 23, 2005
Pakistan, who will be hampered by the absence of Shoaib Akhtar during the forthcoming Indian tour, received another major blow when the board announced that Shoaib Malik was unlikely to bowl in the series, as he didn't meet the ICC's bowling requirements. Shaharyar Khan, the chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board, wasn't optimistic about the chances of Malik's action being cleared.
Footages of Malik's bowling action and his medical reports have been sent to the ICC for analysis, Shaharyar confirmed while speaking to the Press Trust of India. "We are hoping against hope that he will be available for us as a spinner in India," he said. "We have asked the ICC to permit him to bowl again on medical grounds but I don't think he will get the reprieve."
The Pakistan board had had attributed the problem to a road accident that he was involved in two years ago, which resulted in the loss of control of his tendon in his bowling arm. But it appears as though Malik will mainly play as a batsman on the Indian tour.
Malik was reported to the ICC in October last year by Simon Taufel and Aleem Dar for a suspect bowling action. The ICC recently modified the elbow restrictions - which come into effect from March 1 - to 15 degrees. The previous limit was five degrees for spinners. However, according to the reports sent by the University of Western Australia to the PCB, Malik bent his elbow at 20.8 degrees for his offbreaks and 33.4 degrees for his doosra, the delivery that left the right-handed batsmen.
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