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Pakistan spinner Hafeez gets one-year ban for chucking

July 17, 2015 15:07 IST
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His action was found to be illegal for the second time since November, the ICC said on Friday.

Mohammad Hafeez

Pakistan's Mohammad Hafeez bowls. Photograph: Ryan Pierse/Getty Images

Pakistan all-rounder Mohammad Hafeez has been banned from bowling for 12 months after his action was found to be illegal for the second time since November, the International Cricket Council said on Friday.

The assessment was carried out at the Sri Ramachandra University in Chennai on July 6.

Former Pakistan captain Hafeez was initially reported after the first Test against New Zealand in Abu Dhabi in November and was subsequently banned after an independent analysis found his action to be illegal.

He was cleared to bowl in April after changing his action but the part-time off-spinner was again reported by match officials for a suspect action during last month's Test against Sri Lanka in Galle.

"Hafeez is entitled to appeal any procedural aspect of an independent assessment that has led to this automatic suspension," the ICC said in a statement.

"It is a big setback for us and our future plans but mentally we were prepared for such an outcome," chief selector Haroon Rasheed said.

"Hafeez's off bowling has been a major part of our strategy in one-day internationals and T20 cricket and he has also been a more than able bowling option in Test matches," Rasheed said.

"The ban on him bowling for 12-months means we now have to rethink our strategy for the next one year for ODIs and T20 cricket," the former Test batsman said.

Pakistan's former Test opener and head coach, Mohsin Khan described the ban on Hafeez as disappointing and a big challenge now for the national selectors.

"They now have to review the entire situation with the cricket board and take tough decisions."

According to a statement by the ICC, the assessment in Chennai revealed that Hafeez's elbow extension exceeded 15 degrees while bowling and, thus, he employed an illegal bowling action. Hafeez was originally suspended from bowling in November 2014.

Following remedial work on his bowling action, he was reassessed and permitted to resume bowling in April 2015.

A PCB official said it would take stock of the situation since Hafeez is entitled to appeal any procedural aspect of an independent assessment that has led to this automatic suspension.

"The main issue is that Hafeez can now only approach the ICC for a re-assessment of his bowling action after 12-months."

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