New Zealand in West Indies 2014 June 21, 2014

Williamson reported for suspect action

ESPNcricinfo staff
15

Kane Williamson, the part-time New Zealand offspinner, has been reported for a suspect bowling action following the second Test against West Indies in Trinidad. As per ICC regulations, Williamson will have to undergo testing of his action within 21 days, but can continue bowling until the results of the test are known.

Williamson was reported by umpires Ian Gould, Richard Illingworth and Rod Tucker, and match referee Chris Broad, after the Test ended on Friday. Williamson had bowled 15.2 overs in the Test, for figures of 1 for 43. An ICC release said: "The umpires' report cited concerns over a number of deliveries that they considered to be suspect and believed that his action needed to be tested."

The report has been handed over to the New Zealand team manager.

Mike Hesson, New Zealand's head coach, said the move was not "completely unexpected" because of what appeared to be a "clampdown" on suspect bowling actions by the ICC.

"I wouldn't say it was completely unexpected and we are fully supportive of going through the process," Hesson told Radio Sport. "There is concern there but Kane has never changed the way he has bowled in international cricket over two years ago. There appears to be a clampdown by the ICC in terms of suspect action and, if that's the case, then I applaud that."

According to Hesson, the report had not pointed at any specific deliveries under scrutiny as Williamson did not bowl the doosra or the quicker one. He said the cricketer was "miffed" at the timing of the report, but hoped that the ICC would show consistency in reporting bowlers for suspect actions.

"He's a little miffed really because he hasn't changed the way he bowls in two years," Hesson said. "He's just miffed with the timing of it. But, as I said, if they are going to make a clampdown on illegal action, then that's fine. All that Kane wants to see, and all any player wants to see, is a level of consistency."

Williamson will be available to bowl during the third Test against West Indies and the two T20s. He will then travel to England to join Yorkshire for the county season and will also have his action tested in Loughborough.

New Zealand's Test series against West Indies is currently tied at 1-1, with the third Test set to begin in Barbados on June 26.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • on June 24, 2014, 2:38 GMT

    @Allan Placide. The old 'rule' required an action which is biomechanically impossible. Now we have the technology to properly analyse bowling actions, there would not be a single bowler left in international cricket.

  • ygkd on June 23, 2014, 21:33 GMT

    "I wouldn't say it was completely unexpected" - Mike Hesson. Neither would I. I have half-decent eyesight. The tv is in high-definition. I knew a young player, a keen, likeable kid, who when he turned 18 immediately went elsewhere. There was a reason why he wasn't playing firsts where he was - his bowling action was widely regarded as suspect to the naked eye and the club enforced standards that kept him in the seconds, having failed to get him to change it. Which brings up the question - why has NZ not addressed this themselves by not bowling Williamson? No, I don't buy the well-handled-by-NZ line. To handle the situation well would be to ensure that it doesn't so easily arise in the first place. That is why there is a throwing epidemic today. There are not enough people drawing a line in the sand.

  • on June 23, 2014, 9:56 GMT

    Not a big deal, it's not as though he'd be dropped if he couldn't bowl. But he does have a bit of a golden arm, doesn't he?

  • Viratkohlirocks on June 23, 2014, 5:29 GMT

    @sridhar if we make fast bowlers stop running in 15 yards, then they will lose that athleticness in themand suddenly fast bowling become s amuch easier and less athletic thing to do like spin bowling

  • TheBigBoodha on June 23, 2014, 3:30 GMT

    Sridhar, your suggestion to allow chucking would destroy cricket completely. The issue here is not that the rule is not able to be enforced. How do you know that? How do you know what technologies are going to emerge to detect chuckers? The problem is that some people do not want to abide by the rules of the game as they have been set for over 100 years. Administrators in all games cannot let players and teams dictate the rules, and tell them what they can and cannot do! This is what has been happening over the last 15 years. It is entirely possible to abide by the rules & their enforcement, & it can be done with grace and dignity. Just look at how NZ reacted to this matter! That is how it is done. If you legalise chucking, then these same dissenters will be ignoring some other rule next, & crying foul when they are reprimanded. The game would become a farce, &would self-destruct.

  • on June 23, 2014, 0:36 GMT

    The 15 degree rule is senseless an unenforceable in a match situation.Law 24.3 says in part "a ball is fairly delivered in respect of the arm if,once the the bowler's arm has reached the level of the shoulder in the delivery swing, THE ELBOW JOINT IS NOT STRAIGHTENED PARTIALLY OR COMPLETELY from that point until the ball has left the arm.

    What this 15 degree debacle has done is to encourage young bowlers in lower grade cricket to develop improper bowling actions that go uncorrected until they play in ICC competitions.

    The simple solution to this problem is to abandon this nonsensical intrusion of 15 degrees and revert to the LAWS of the game with which the players of long ago .had to abide.

  • on June 22, 2014, 20:04 GMT

    This rule is so technical and difficult to detect under match conditions that it is really impossible to enforce properly, and in fact is allows for a great deal of subjectivity in interpretation. Any rule that cannot be enforced at the time of execution is ridiculous, since technically a match, or even a series can be completed and won with an illegal action before anything is done. I don't know what idiots come up with these absurb rules, like this one, and Duckworth/ Lewis, and no make up matches for washed out events. All these things do is create confusion among players and fans, and lead to results that supporters feel are unjustified. These rules have made international cricket feel like the most unfair of sports.

  • on June 22, 2014, 20:00 GMT

    @regofpicton on (June 22, 2014, 8:05 GMT) Real-time photo analysis cannot detect illegal deliveries under match conditions. Legalizing chucking, as in baseball, is the only solution that is fair to everyone. That will also significantly speed up games - after all, nobody wants to pay to see fast bowlers walking back 15-20 yards after every ball. If chucking is legalized, bowlers' run-up can be limited to a maximum of 5 yards.

  • on June 22, 2014, 17:38 GMT

    Umpires should be directed to call chucking when they see it. Post-action analysis is useless.

  • jmcilhinney on June 22, 2014, 9:13 GMT

    @Sridhar Sundaram on (June 22, 2014, 2:12 GMT), you're displaying a common misconception that is a big reason that there is so much confusion when it comes to spin bowling actions. There is no rule that says a bowler cannot bend their arm more than 15 degrees. A bowler can bend their arm as much as they want. What they cannot do is change the angle of flex in their elbow more than 15 degrees. A lot of people think that a bowler has an illegal action because their elbow looks very bent as they deliver the ball but that's no issue at all. It's a proven fact that many fast bowlers actually change the angle of their elbow during delivery more than many spinners.

  • on June 24, 2014, 2:38 GMT

    @Allan Placide. The old 'rule' required an action which is biomechanically impossible. Now we have the technology to properly analyse bowling actions, there would not be a single bowler left in international cricket.

  • ygkd on June 23, 2014, 21:33 GMT

    "I wouldn't say it was completely unexpected" - Mike Hesson. Neither would I. I have half-decent eyesight. The tv is in high-definition. I knew a young player, a keen, likeable kid, who when he turned 18 immediately went elsewhere. There was a reason why he wasn't playing firsts where he was - his bowling action was widely regarded as suspect to the naked eye and the club enforced standards that kept him in the seconds, having failed to get him to change it. Which brings up the question - why has NZ not addressed this themselves by not bowling Williamson? No, I don't buy the well-handled-by-NZ line. To handle the situation well would be to ensure that it doesn't so easily arise in the first place. That is why there is a throwing epidemic today. There are not enough people drawing a line in the sand.

  • on June 23, 2014, 9:56 GMT

    Not a big deal, it's not as though he'd be dropped if he couldn't bowl. But he does have a bit of a golden arm, doesn't he?

  • Viratkohlirocks on June 23, 2014, 5:29 GMT

    @sridhar if we make fast bowlers stop running in 15 yards, then they will lose that athleticness in themand suddenly fast bowling become s amuch easier and less athletic thing to do like spin bowling

  • TheBigBoodha on June 23, 2014, 3:30 GMT

    Sridhar, your suggestion to allow chucking would destroy cricket completely. The issue here is not that the rule is not able to be enforced. How do you know that? How do you know what technologies are going to emerge to detect chuckers? The problem is that some people do not want to abide by the rules of the game as they have been set for over 100 years. Administrators in all games cannot let players and teams dictate the rules, and tell them what they can and cannot do! This is what has been happening over the last 15 years. It is entirely possible to abide by the rules & their enforcement, & it can be done with grace and dignity. Just look at how NZ reacted to this matter! That is how it is done. If you legalise chucking, then these same dissenters will be ignoring some other rule next, & crying foul when they are reprimanded. The game would become a farce, &would self-destruct.

  • on June 23, 2014, 0:36 GMT

    The 15 degree rule is senseless an unenforceable in a match situation.Law 24.3 says in part "a ball is fairly delivered in respect of the arm if,once the the bowler's arm has reached the level of the shoulder in the delivery swing, THE ELBOW JOINT IS NOT STRAIGHTENED PARTIALLY OR COMPLETELY from that point until the ball has left the arm.

    What this 15 degree debacle has done is to encourage young bowlers in lower grade cricket to develop improper bowling actions that go uncorrected until they play in ICC competitions.

    The simple solution to this problem is to abandon this nonsensical intrusion of 15 degrees and revert to the LAWS of the game with which the players of long ago .had to abide.

  • on June 22, 2014, 20:04 GMT

    This rule is so technical and difficult to detect under match conditions that it is really impossible to enforce properly, and in fact is allows for a great deal of subjectivity in interpretation. Any rule that cannot be enforced at the time of execution is ridiculous, since technically a match, or even a series can be completed and won with an illegal action before anything is done. I don't know what idiots come up with these absurb rules, like this one, and Duckworth/ Lewis, and no make up matches for washed out events. All these things do is create confusion among players and fans, and lead to results that supporters feel are unjustified. These rules have made international cricket feel like the most unfair of sports.

  • on June 22, 2014, 20:00 GMT

    @regofpicton on (June 22, 2014, 8:05 GMT) Real-time photo analysis cannot detect illegal deliveries under match conditions. Legalizing chucking, as in baseball, is the only solution that is fair to everyone. That will also significantly speed up games - after all, nobody wants to pay to see fast bowlers walking back 15-20 yards after every ball. If chucking is legalized, bowlers' run-up can be limited to a maximum of 5 yards.

  • on June 22, 2014, 17:38 GMT

    Umpires should be directed to call chucking when they see it. Post-action analysis is useless.

  • jmcilhinney on June 22, 2014, 9:13 GMT

    @Sridhar Sundaram on (June 22, 2014, 2:12 GMT), you're displaying a common misconception that is a big reason that there is so much confusion when it comes to spin bowling actions. There is no rule that says a bowler cannot bend their arm more than 15 degrees. A bowler can bend their arm as much as they want. What they cannot do is change the angle of flex in their elbow more than 15 degrees. A lot of people think that a bowler has an illegal action because their elbow looks very bent as they deliver the ball but that's no issue at all. It's a proven fact that many fast bowlers actually change the angle of their elbow during delivery more than many spinners.

  • regofpicton on June 22, 2014, 8:05 GMT

    It seems rather odd that a gentle off-break bowler should be breaking the rule. But the rule -or one very like it - is clearly essential. The alternative is to encourage the outright chucker. The problem, as already pointed out, is the difference between lab testing and match conditions. If the umpires could require suspect bowler to wear short sleeves during play, modern photo-analysis could sort this out very smartly.

  • Reuben_Kincaid on June 22, 2014, 7:17 GMT

    This is being well managed by NZ. No hysterics, no jingoism, no feigned shock or media tantrums. And a sensible & supportive response from the national coach too; "There appears to be a clampdown by the ICC in terms of suspect action and, if that's the case, then I applaud that". Illegal actions can be corrected, no different to lifting in the sport of walking. But unlike walking, cricket bowed to the vested interests of some of its powerful member nations and ludicrously removed the authority of those in the best position to adjudicate on infringements when it matters i.e. in actual match conditions, which led predictably & directly to the throwing epidemic plaguing first class & international cricket today.

  • pz97 on June 22, 2014, 5:12 GMT

    I think they should also look at how they spin the ball.. Likewise, as tests based on angle between arms are done , they should test how a bowler uses his hand while delivering the ball hence proper cricket is played..

  • Sinhaya on June 22, 2014, 3:33 GMT

    I am sure Williamson will come fine. He is no doubt a very useful part time bowler.

  • on June 22, 2014, 2:12 GMT

    The 15 degrees arm bend rule for bowlers is not practically enforceable under match conditions. A bowler can keep his arm straight during lab testing and bend it during a match. Imagine the confusion that would result if soccer had a rule that a player cannot bend his knee more than 30 degrees when kicking the ball, or a tennis rule that the arm cannot be bent more than 15 degrees when hitting the ball! Cricket, like baseball, should allow any degree of bending, and bowler run-up should be no more than 5 steps. That will make the game faster and make the rules fair for everyone.

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  • on June 22, 2014, 2:12 GMT

    The 15 degrees arm bend rule for bowlers is not practically enforceable under match conditions. A bowler can keep his arm straight during lab testing and bend it during a match. Imagine the confusion that would result if soccer had a rule that a player cannot bend his knee more than 30 degrees when kicking the ball, or a tennis rule that the arm cannot be bent more than 15 degrees when hitting the ball! Cricket, like baseball, should allow any degree of bending, and bowler run-up should be no more than 5 steps. That will make the game faster and make the rules fair for everyone.

  • Sinhaya on June 22, 2014, 3:33 GMT

    I am sure Williamson will come fine. He is no doubt a very useful part time bowler.

  • pz97 on June 22, 2014, 5:12 GMT

    I think they should also look at how they spin the ball.. Likewise, as tests based on angle between arms are done , they should test how a bowler uses his hand while delivering the ball hence proper cricket is played..

  • Reuben_Kincaid on June 22, 2014, 7:17 GMT

    This is being well managed by NZ. No hysterics, no jingoism, no feigned shock or media tantrums. And a sensible & supportive response from the national coach too; "There appears to be a clampdown by the ICC in terms of suspect action and, if that's the case, then I applaud that". Illegal actions can be corrected, no different to lifting in the sport of walking. But unlike walking, cricket bowed to the vested interests of some of its powerful member nations and ludicrously removed the authority of those in the best position to adjudicate on infringements when it matters i.e. in actual match conditions, which led predictably & directly to the throwing epidemic plaguing first class & international cricket today.

  • regofpicton on June 22, 2014, 8:05 GMT

    It seems rather odd that a gentle off-break bowler should be breaking the rule. But the rule -or one very like it - is clearly essential. The alternative is to encourage the outright chucker. The problem, as already pointed out, is the difference between lab testing and match conditions. If the umpires could require suspect bowler to wear short sleeves during play, modern photo-analysis could sort this out very smartly.

  • jmcilhinney on June 22, 2014, 9:13 GMT

    @Sridhar Sundaram on (June 22, 2014, 2:12 GMT), you're displaying a common misconception that is a big reason that there is so much confusion when it comes to spin bowling actions. There is no rule that says a bowler cannot bend their arm more than 15 degrees. A bowler can bend their arm as much as they want. What they cannot do is change the angle of flex in their elbow more than 15 degrees. A lot of people think that a bowler has an illegal action because their elbow looks very bent as they deliver the ball but that's no issue at all. It's a proven fact that many fast bowlers actually change the angle of their elbow during delivery more than many spinners.

  • on June 22, 2014, 17:38 GMT

    Umpires should be directed to call chucking when they see it. Post-action analysis is useless.

  • on June 22, 2014, 20:00 GMT

    @regofpicton on (June 22, 2014, 8:05 GMT) Real-time photo analysis cannot detect illegal deliveries under match conditions. Legalizing chucking, as in baseball, is the only solution that is fair to everyone. That will also significantly speed up games - after all, nobody wants to pay to see fast bowlers walking back 15-20 yards after every ball. If chucking is legalized, bowlers' run-up can be limited to a maximum of 5 yards.

  • on June 22, 2014, 20:04 GMT

    This rule is so technical and difficult to detect under match conditions that it is really impossible to enforce properly, and in fact is allows for a great deal of subjectivity in interpretation. Any rule that cannot be enforced at the time of execution is ridiculous, since technically a match, or even a series can be completed and won with an illegal action before anything is done. I don't know what idiots come up with these absurb rules, like this one, and Duckworth/ Lewis, and no make up matches for washed out events. All these things do is create confusion among players and fans, and lead to results that supporters feel are unjustified. These rules have made international cricket feel like the most unfair of sports.

  • on June 23, 2014, 0:36 GMT

    The 15 degree rule is senseless an unenforceable in a match situation.Law 24.3 says in part "a ball is fairly delivered in respect of the arm if,once the the bowler's arm has reached the level of the shoulder in the delivery swing, THE ELBOW JOINT IS NOT STRAIGHTENED PARTIALLY OR COMPLETELY from that point until the ball has left the arm.

    What this 15 degree debacle has done is to encourage young bowlers in lower grade cricket to develop improper bowling actions that go uncorrected until they play in ICC competitions.

    The simple solution to this problem is to abandon this nonsensical intrusion of 15 degrees and revert to the LAWS of the game with which the players of long ago .had to abide.