Saeed Ajmal had an impressive stint with the Pakistan national side in all forms of cricket. The off-spinner delivered many match-winning performances while donning the Pakistan jersey. He was once ranked the world’s number one bowler in ODIs and T20Is.
Ajmal scalped 184 wickets in 113 ODIs and 85 wickets in 64 T20Is. He delivered impressive performances with the red ball too as he plucked 178 wickets in 35 Tests before his bowling action was reported for the second time. Ajmal’s career was marred with controversies due to his bowling action and he was eventually banned from bowling by the ICC in 2015.
Ajmal’s bowling action was first reported during an ODI series against Australia in the UAE in 2009. After getting clearance in 2014, Ajmal had to remodel and work on his action and the new bowling action did not work in favour of the off-spinner. After remodelling his action, Ajmal was not able to use his most lethal weapon– ‘The doosra’.
Saeed Ajmal blasts ICC’s behaviour
Ajmal has now recalled the instance when he was banned after a Test match against Sri Lanka in 2014. Ajmal has stated that ICC had removed the medical conditions which they had considered during his first ban. However, after the retirement of Sri Lanka legend Muralitharan, Ajmal believes that ICC felt PCB couldn’t do anything against their decision.
“The test in 2009 and 2014 was same but the only difference was they had removed the medical conditions which they considered in 2009. When Muralitharan left cricket then ICC thought there is this guy Saeed Ajmal and he is from Pakistan and they can’t do anything against our decision,” Ajmal said as quoted by India Today.
Recently, Ajmal had also revealed about the incident when he scored his international career’s only fifty. He shared the instance where the Pakistan off-spinner wanted to hit England pacer James Anderson’s head with his bat.
“When they [England] took the new ball, Anderson came up to me and said ‘Are you ready for bouncers?’ and I told him that I don’t know English. I thought he is joking since I am a tailender and he would probably bowl straight and get me out,” said Ajmal.
“But they fired a barrage of bouncers at me. When I got hit by six or seven bouncers, I told Zulqarnain [Haider] that I want to smash Anderson’s head with my bat. Then I decided to go for my shots. I tried to step out of my crease and hit a couple of bouncers. Then the ball started coming on to my bat and I ended up with a fifty (50 off 79 balls),” he added.
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