Former Pak players call on ICC for ‘illegal action’ menace

Karachi :Reacting on the growing list of ‘chuckers’ in world cricket, former Pakistan players have called on the ICC with various suggestions to curb the menace while striking the right balance between bat and ball.

Pakistan have been at the receiving end of many illegal bowling actions being reported by the international board as off-spinner Bilal Asif became the latest bowler to be found of chucking during the Zimbabwe series.

Cricketer-turned-commentator Ramiz Raja believes that a bowler’s illegal action is certainly a setback for the concerned board, but said that ICC should strike the right balance between bat and ball to keep the sport competitive.

“There is no doubt that the reporting of Bilal Asif’s action is big setback for Pakistan cricket and there is no doubt when a player is reported from a international match it spoils the image of the concerned board,” Ramiz said.

The former captain pointed out that once a bowler’s action is reported, problems arise for him.

“There are definite problems with our bowlers in domestic cricket and there is an urgent need to set up a biomechanic lab in Pakistan and to make the umpires and referees more vigilant,” he said.

Meanwhile Qadir said the reporting of Asif was bad news for Pakistan cricket but it was also a fact that off-spin was a fine art which had been soiled by bowlers being allowed to introduce variations into the art.

“I think more than anything the ICC should have a meeting with the heads of all boards and direct them to ensure the end of chuckers in their respective domestic cricket.”

“And the ICC should not only ban the bowlers with suspect actions for life but also introduce heavy penalties for the home boards as well,” the leg-spinner said.

He said when the cricket boards faced penalties they would try their best to ensure bowlers with action problems are not allowed to play at the international level.

The former Test spinner however also waded into the ICC terming their laws as hard to understand. “Laws are supposed to be made simpler to make cricket more attractive. The chucking laws at times defy logic because while one bowler is banned another bowler with a similar action is not allowed to play,” he noted.

Former skipper Wasim Akram said that the PCB should have ensured and checked Asif’s action before allowing him to be considered for national selection.

“What is also necessary is that the board finally works on setting up a biomechanics lab the equipment and software for which was imported years back and is gathering dust at the NCA. One does not even know whether it outdated or can be used now for testing bowlers,” Akram said.