The chucking controversy November 21, 2005

Pakistan board vows to support Shabbir

Cricinfo staff

Shabbir Ahmed took five wickets in the first Test at Multan but found himself in the midst of chucking allegations yet again © Getty Images
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has said it will do all it can to ensure that Shabbir Ahmed, the lanky fast bowler, has his bowling action cleared by the International Cricket Council (ICC).

Billy Bowden and Simon Taufel, the two umpires who officiated in the first Test between England and Pakistan at Multan, cited problems with Shabbir's action in a detailed report submitted to the match referee after the match. It was the second time this year, and fourth overall, that Shabbir has been called for a suspect action.

Abbas Zaidi, the PCB director, maintained that Shabbir had the full support of the Pakistan board. "There is no question that because his action has been reported again he will be left to fend for himself," he was quoted as saying by Reuters. "We are considering several proposals to help him out. One of them is sending him to Australia to work with experts to remove any defects in his action on a permanent basis."

After already being reported in the West Indies in May of 2005, Shabbir was sent to England and then to Australia to work with biomechanics experts to have his action cleared by the ICC. Though permitted to resume bowling last month, Shabbir's latest controversy may prove detrimental to the PCB. "He is an asset for the Pakistan team and we are keen to resolve this problem with his action once for all," Zaidi commented. He added that a decision would be taken in the next few days on when and where to send Shabbir for tests and rehabilitation.

Shabbir, who has played just 10 Tests and 32 one-day internationals since 1999, was dropped for the ongoing second Test against England at Faisalabad. The PCB stated that it did not wish to take any more risks with Shabbir's career by putting him under further scrutiny by the umpires.