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Cricket Hong Kong

Legal action: Hong Kong cricketer Nizakat Khan hopes ICC will remove bowling ban after analysis test in Australia

Leg-spinner has been suspended from bowling since July, 2015 because his elbow-flex exceeded the allowed 15 degrees

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 29 September, 2016, 5:53pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 29 September, 2016, 11:09pm

Hong Kong all-rounder Nizakat Khan is confident he can pass an ICC bowling test in December, having been banned from bowling since July 2015 because of an illegal action.

The 24-year-old, who scored a first-class century against Ireland last month, will undergo the test in Australia during Hong Kong’s tour, which features T20 matches against Sydney Thunder and Sydney Sixers.

“I’ve been working very hard on changing my action with the coaches in Hong Kong and I feel I can get it right this time,” said Nizakat, who failed a test in October last year.

“It’s not easy because I’ve had to change my whole action; the way I’ve been bowling since I was young. I’ve had to try work on a side-arm action and I’m confident that this time I can do it.”

Leg-spinner Nizakat was suspended from bowling in international matches after an ICC panel found his action to be illegal during Hong Kong’s T20 World Cup qualifier against Nepal in Stormont, Northern Ireland on July 15, 2015.

An analysis determined that his elbow flexed beyond the allowed 15 degrees.

Hong Kong coach Simon Cook said: “He’s worked really hard on his bowling and he’s confident he will be cleared.”

Nizakat has claimed four wickets from five T20 matches at an economy rate of 5.30 but his value for the Hong Kong team is more with the bat these days.

He scored 123 against Ireland in a four-day Intercontinental Cup and in domestic competition over the weekend hit a century for Hong Kong Cricket Club against Pakistan Hong Kong in 53 balls as he reached 116.

The Pakistan-born player also starred for Hong Kong in their T20 victory over Ireland on September 5, giving his team the series after the second match was washed out.

Nizakat scored 62 off 43 balls to beat his previous T20 best of 19.

“Definitely, I’m more of a batting all-rounder and my main focus is with the bat but I hope to be bowling for Hong Kong again very soon,” said Nizakat.