Ban on Ajmal 'good for the game', says Australia coach Lehmann

Published: Monday, September 15, 2014, 11:21 [IST]
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Ban on Ajmal 'good for game': Lehmann
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Melbourne, Sep 15: Ahead of Australia's bilateral series against Pakistan in the UAE, coach Darren Lehman has said ICC's decision to ban spinner Saeed Ajmal is "good for the game". Lehmann-coached Australia will play Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates in two Tests, three ODIs and a Twenty20 International in October.

Describing the decision to ban Pakistan's most successful bowler in recent times "interesting", Lehmann said, "The ICC have obviously decided to have a crackdown on it. That's good for the game, we've got to make sure that area is right."

"If you're within the rules then fine. If you're not, then you've got to be looked at. That's what they've decided to do. What that tells coaches and players and everyone coming through the game is that you won't be able to do any of that moving forward. I think it's good for the game," Lehmann told Adelaide radio station "FiveAA".

Lehmann must, at least in part, take some responsibility for helping instigate the ICC's crackdown as a member of the governing body's Cricket Committee, whose remit is to make recommendations on "cricket-playing matters" to the Chief Executives' Committee and, in turn, the full ICC Board.

At the June meeting in Melbourne, the Cricket Committee recommended that umpires and match referees be empowered to identify and report suspect bowlers with greater confidence.

Lehmann is one of 17 members of the Cricket Committee that is chaired by former India spinner Anil Kumble. He takes a position as one of two current full member coaching representatives on the committee that also includes two representatives from past and current players.

Following that Melbourne meeting, the game's governing body put out a statement that said the "ICC Board noted with concern the number of bowlers with suspected illegal bowling actions currently playing cricket".

Details from the report into Ajmal's testing session were released on the weekend which revealed the off-spinner was found to be straightening his arm by up to 43 degrees. Former Pakistan off-spinner Saqlain Mushtaq, who remains one of the top spinners produced in Pakistan cricket, is reportedly being paid one million rupees per month for working on Ajmal's bowling action which got him into trouble with the ICC earlier this month after biomechanic tests in Brisbane.


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