ICC confirms bowling action October 18, 2005

Shabbir set to return to cricket

Cricinfo staff

Doubts on Shabbir Ahmed's suspect action have been chucked © Getty Images

Shabbir Ahmed, the Pakistan fast bowler repeatedly called for a suspect action, has been permitted by the ICC to resume bowling, in a written report to the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB).

David Richardson, ICC general manager for cricket, said that "The findings of the report mean that Shabbir can resume bowling in international cricket". "However, everyone needs to be aware that no bowler is ever "cleared" as they could simply revert to bad habits. All bowlers are subject to further reporting if the match officials are of the view that they have concerns about whether a delivery or deliveries conform to the Laws of Cricket when observed with the naked eye."

After being reported during the Barbados Test match against the West Indies in May 2005, Shabbir found himself banned from bowling in Tests or one-day matches. The PCB then arranged for Shabbir to undergo corrective work with Bob Woolmer and other coaches, and a biomedical analysis of the bowler's action was submitted to the University of Western Australia in September.

Scientists found Shabbir's action to be within the ICC's prescribed 15 degree level of tolerance and confirmed that there had been a marked improvement, but not without suggesting areas of probable concern. Under the Procedure for the Review of Bowlers with Suspect Bowling Actions, the analysis has been passed on to the PCB, on the condition that Shabbir bowl in an action consistent with the analysis.

Shabbir could be reported, and called again, if he fails to bowl in an action that falls below the levels of tolerance, and that this would remain the discretion of the match officials. In such circumstances the ICC would call for an independent analysis of Shabbir's action again.

If that suspension occurred within two years of the starting date of the previous suspension (13 July 2005), he would be automatically banned from bowling in international cricket for a minimum of one year.