I’m ‘elated’ not to be facing Ajmal, admits Chris Rogers

"I had my own troubles with Graeme Swann, so I didn't know how I was going to go against Ajmal"

“I had my own troubles with Graeme Swann, so I didn’t know how I was going to go against Ajmal”

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

Australia opening batsman Chris Rogers has admitted that he is “elated” not to be facing Pakistan spinner Saeed Ajmal in the upcoming Test series, which gets underway on October 22 in Dubai.

Ajmal was recently banned from bowling by the International Cricket Council (ICC) after he was found to be flexing his elbow almost three times over the 15-degree limit.

Rogers had a lot of trouble when facing former England spinner Graeme Swann in the Ashes series last year and conceded that he did not have a plan on how to combat Ajmal, who possesses unorthodox deliveries like the doosra in his arsenal.

Rogers also revealed that his Middlesex team-mate, Eoin Morgan, has firsthand experience of how much damage Ajmal can do to a batsman’s career.

“You can’t have a guy who is exceeding the rules, or not playing to the rules, who’s affecting other people’s careers. And that’s what it comes down to,” Rogers told the Age. “I played with Eoin Morgan, and he’s a tremendous player of spin, but he still says Ajmal ruined his Test career.

“So maybe if that hadn’t happened and Eoin had got a couple of scores there, you never know, he might still be playing Test cricket. A lot of ifs and buts in that, but the rules are there and are meant to be followed and if he was that far outside of it, then this should have happened a long time ago, I think.

“When I heard that news [of Ajmal’s suspension], I was pretty elated for about 48 hours. I had my own troubles with Graeme Swann, so I didn’t know how I was going to go against Ajmal. That might prolong my Test career a little bit longer.”

After enjoying a lot of success in the back-to-back Ashes series last year and on the tour of South Africa earlier this year, Rogers is hoping his good form with the bat will not abandon him during the upcoming series.

“It’s going to be a fantastic tour,” Rogers said. “I’ve spoken to the England guys about the UAE and they love it. It’s going to be hard work with the heat obviously, and my white skin. But I’ll get through, and a couple of big scores on some flat tracks would be nice.”

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