Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Pakistan all-rounder Mohammad Hafeez has announced that he never considered himself to be an off-spinner.
Hafeez’s comments come after he was reported for a suspect bowling action following the first Test against New Zealand in Abu Dhabi.
“I never considered myself an off-spinner,” Hafeez told reporters at the National Cricket Academy in Lahore. “I am a batsman and honestly I never even rated myself as a bowler. I just bowl naturally, bowl straight deliveries and some spin. It’s not like I do it myself to control the variation.
“I don’t see myself on the basis of my bowling and never tried to be in the team as an off-spinner. I am always a batsman and focus on batting but, yes, bowling has been a plus point. It is also important for my career as well as after all it’s helping my country and team. I am hoping that I will get through this tough time and will continue to play my natural cricket.”
Continuing on the topic of his bowling action, Hafeez revealed that the umpires had been concerned about four deliveries from one of his spells during the first Test. However, even after reviewing footage of his bowling, Hafeez stated that he could not spot any flaw in his action.
“They have shown me the balls they deemed suspect and those are as normal, as I usually bowl,” he said. “So I don’t think there should be any problem at all. I bowl naturally and will continue to bowl that way in the testing.
“Nothing is different from what I have been bowling in the last 11 years. I never even tried changing or adding any variation in my bowling. At international level I am told that four of my deliveries were reported and umpire and referee feel they need to be scrutinized.
“They think that by watching those deliveries with the naked eye they exceed the 15-degree limit. I have to go through with the test, there is nothing complex in it and I optimistic that I should be cleared.”
Hafeez also made it clear that he was ruled out of the ongoing second Test in Dubai since he suffered a hamstring injury.
“I could have played, there was 50/50 chance for me,” he said. “But on the morning of the second Test the team management decided to rest me ensure I’m 100% fit.”