Karachi: Pakistani pacer Shoaib Akhtar said on Sunday he hoped his international career would not be halted again over his controversial bowling action.
"I hope that my bowling action would be cleared by the International Cricket Council (ICC) after the rulings of Western Australian University (WAU) experts," Akhtar told reporters.
Dubbed the 'Rawalpindi Express', Akhtar is under scrutiny from the ICC after his action was questioned for a third time in a short career of four years. He was reported in Australia in 1999 but was cleared by an ICC ruling in March 2000.
Umpires in New Zealand reported his action for a second time in March 2001 but Akhtar was subsequently given the all clear by a home review panel in April on the basis of the WAU report. In November however, an ICC match referee questioned the legality of his action during the final of the Sharjah tri-series. But once again WAU experts said Akhtar has hyper mobility in his bowling arm, which makes it appear as if he is throwing the ball.
"I hope that ICC forms a medical board and gives the university report due consideration. Challenging my action would be challenging the experts of the WAU," he said. Akhtar returned from Australia on Saturday to join the Pakistan team camp gearing up for January's tour of Bangladesh. "Everybody is convinced on the legality of my action, from Australian great Dennis Lillee, to Jeff Thomson to Pakistan's Imran Khan.
"Everyone told me that I have a legal action," he said. The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has included Akhtar's name in the 16-member squad for the tour of Bangladesh.
"I am keen to play in Bangladesh because I have heard a lot about the craze of the game there," he said. If Akhtar's action is reported again while in Bangladesh, the ICC's bowling review panel could, under the stage three of the examination process, ban him for a year.