ICC to test at University of Western Australia November 28, 2005

Pakistan duo to undergo bowling review

Cricinfo staff

Shoaib Malik during a test on his suspect bowling action in December 2004 © Getty Images
The ICC has confirmed that the bowling actions of Shabbir Ahmed and Shoaib Malik will be reviewed by the biomechanical laboratory at the University of Western Australia (UWA). Shabbir's action will be reviewed by video while Shoaib will travel to the UWA for further testing.

Both bowlers' actions were reported by the umpires after the first Test between Pakistan and England at Multan earlier this month. Their actions will be reviewed by the ICC-approved biomechanist Professor Bruce Elliott and they remain eligible to play international cricket pending the submission of reports to the ICC by him.

Shabbir was suspended from playing international cricket earlier this year when his bowling action was found to exceed the current levels of tolerance when measured at a laboratory in England. After modifying his action, he was subsequently reassessed by Elliott in September 2005 and as a result of that assessment was allowed to resume his international career.

As the analysis carried out at UWA was only a few months prior to the current report, the ICC and PCB have agreed to use the results from this reassessment of his action for the required comparison against match footage, instead of submitting Shabbir for further physical analysis.

Elliott will, therefore, conduct a detailed qualitative analysis of the bowling action employed by Shabbir during the first Test match, paying particular attention to the comments in the Match Officials' report and comparing it to the action employed during the laboratory analysis conducted in his laboratory in September.

On the basis of this assessment and comparison, Professor Elliott will be required to determine:

  • Whether the action as used in the Pakistan v England Test is different to his action as analysed last September.
  • If different, whether such difference is likely to have an effect on the legality or not of his action.

In the event that the actions are the same, no further analysis will be required and the conclusion will be that the action of Shabbir was within legal limits. If the action is different, the conclusion will be that Shabbir displayed an illegal action and he will be suspended from bowling in international cricket for a minimum period of one year as per the ICC regulations. Only after the expiry of the one-year period will the player be entitled to approach the ICC for a re-assessment of his action.

If the footage cannot be compared due to varying camera angles or for some other technical reason, Shabbir will be requested to submit to a further 3D analysis to enable Elliott to make a more accurate comparison of the action in the laboratory as compared to his action he deployed in the first Test.

The ICC is sending tapes to Elliott and has requested the production of a report by December 9, 2005.

Shoaib Malik on the other hand has not been reported under exisitng regulations before, and the ICC and Pakistan board have agreed that he will travel to Perth to undergo analysis on December 8. The laboratory analysis undertaken at this time will be compared with TV footage of the action used in the first Test and, again, Elliott will be required to produce a report confirming whether the action used in the match was illegal or not.

If Shoaib's action is found to be legal he will be permitted to continue to play international cricket. If he is found to have been bowling with an illegal action he will be suspended from bowling in international cricket immediately. He then has the option of applying to the ICC for a re-assessment of his action at any time in order to return to bowling. No date has been set for the submission of a report on Shoaib's action but it is expected to be completed towards the middle of December.

Shoaib's action was previously analysed by Elliott in December 2004.

The full regulations for the review of bowlers with suspected illegal