Sarfraz slams Taylor's gesture, backs Hafeez
It was the first match of the ODI series between Pakistan v New Zealand. Mohammad Hafeez had just bowled his first over to Ross Taylor and the New Zealander gestured that the off-spinner's action was illegal. What ensued was heated and continued argument for few overs between skipper Sarfraz Ahmed and the umpires.
Sarfraz later termed Taylor's gesture disgraceful.
"Ross Taylor's action was not right. It's not his job to show actions like that and it was shown on TV, which was disgraceful. His job is to just do batting. It's better if he concentrates on his batting," Sarfraz said after the match.
Elaborating on exchange of words with the umpires, the skipper said: "I complained to umpires that his (Taylor's) action isn't sportsmanship. He reacted 2-3 times, which wasn't correct. As a professional cricketer, he should be aware of such things. If he had any problem, then instead of showing actions on live TV, he should have complained to the umpire."
Sarfraz backed Hafeez and said: "There is no problem with Hafeez's action. It is very clear. They were trying to create an issue out of nothing." Mohammad Hafeez was suspended thrice in last four years. First, following his suspect action during November 2014 Test against New Zealand in Abu Dhabi. He was permitted to bowl in April 2015 but was suspended again in July 2015 following illegal action in Galle Test versus Sri Lanka. He was cleared and resumed bowling in November 2016. Hafeez was reported for the third time during Abu Dhabi ODI against Sri Lanka in October 2017 and was suspended in November 2017. It was in May this year that the International Cricket Council (ICC) had cleared Hafeez's action after remedial work. During re-assessment done in April, it was found that Hafeez's elbow extension was within the 15-degree allowed by the ICC. The match officials can still report Hafeez if they find a suspect action.