KARACHI: Former Pakistan off-spinner Saqlain Mushtaq believes Saeed Ajmal has rectified his action to permissible limits and is ready to undergo a test to return to cricket, the country’s board said on Tuesday.
The PCB will first send Ajmal, who was barred from bowling in international cricket for an illegal action, for an informal review, chairman Shaharyar Khan told reporters.
The board had hired Mushtaq on a short-term contract to help Ajmal correct his action, which breached the 15 degrees level of tolerance allowed by the International Cricket Council for bowlers to straighten their arm.
“Saqlain has given a positive report that Ajmal has managed to remodel his bowling action to within the permissible limits of the ICC. He and Ajmal are both ready to go for the informal tests,” Khan said.
“Once he clears the informal test we will than ask the ICC to test out Ajmal so that he can be cleared before the World Cup.”
Ajmal, who has been Pakistan’s leading wicket-taker in all formats for the last three years, was first reported by match officials in August during the first test against Sri Lanka in Galle.
“Ajmal is vital to our chances in the World Cup so we will follow all the permitted routes to get him cleared by the ICC,” Khan added.
“Very soon we will be sending him for an informal review to one of the three biomechanic labs of the ICC and we are hopeful he can be available for the World Cup.” In Ajmal’s absence, Australia thrashed Pakistan in the lone Twenty20 and blanked them 3-0 in the three match ODI series in the UAE.
Khan, who visited Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and India to drum up support for the return of international cricket to Pakistan, said some subcontinent teams were ready to send their national teams to Pakistan.
“I had some positive discussions during my tour and from 2015 onwards I am hopeful that representative cricket will return to Pakistan,” he said.
“Some associate countries like Ireland and Afghanistan are also ready to send their teams to Pakistan.”