Career hit by bowling problems November 28, 2006

Shabbir has action cleared

Cricinfo staff

If the report gets cleared by ICC, Shabbir Ahmed can starting thinking about restarting his international career © Getty Images
Shabbir Ahmed, the Pakistan seamer, has had his bowling action cleared and is expected to return from his one-year ban in the near future.

The Pakistan board has said that tests carried out at the University of Western Australia show Shabbir's action to be within the 15 degree limit set out by ICC. He was banned from international cricket for 12 months after he was reported for the fourth time in November 2005 following the Multan Test against England.

The board added that it "expects a detailed report in a week's time subsequent to which the PCB will do the needful for getting Shabbir cleared to represent Pakistan after his year-long ban finishes on December 18."

The report needs to be cleared by ICC before Shabbir is allowed to play again. Pakistan are keen to have him back before the tour of South Africa early next year and then for the World Cup in West Indies. The situation has been made more urgent by the bans handed out to Shoaib Akhtar and Mohammad Asif following their failed dope tests, which has left Pakistan short of pace bowling.

Shabbir has taken 51 wickets in 10 Tests and 33 wickets in 32 ODIs in a career plagued by questions over his action. It was first noticed in 1999 and again in January 2004 but he was cleared by ICC after tests. However, in 2005 his action was reported twice; firstly in May then during England's tour in November.