List of international cricketers called for throwing

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Muttiah Muralitharan bowling in a One Day International against Australia in early 2006. Just over a decade earlier, also in Australia, he was called for throwing twice in ten days by two different umpires—Darrell Hair and Ross Emerson.

In the sport of cricket, strict rules govern the method of bowling the ball. The rules relates to the bending of the arm at the elbow, the extent of which has always been open to interpretation by the umpires. More recently, the ICC has attempted to codify the maximum permissible flexing of the elbow as 15 degrees.

When a player is found by the umpire to have delivered the ball contrary to those rules, the umpire will call a no-ball and he is said to have been called for throwing. Where public opinion is that a player's bowling action appears to be that he routinely throws, he is said to have a suspect or an illegal action, or more derogatorily, he is said to be a chucker. The issue is often highly emotive with accusers considering that deliveries with an illegal action are akin to cheating.

Over the years, a number of players have been called in Test cricket and One Day Internationals, invariably creating controversy and occasionally destroying cricket careers. Often the player has been able to modify his action to appease his critics and the umpires, but more commonly, especially when the bowler has been called on more than one occasion, his career is international cricket is effectively ended.

For many spinners, especially off-spinners, they are susceptible to be called for throwing when they have a front-on approach because the elbow gets in front of the wrist upon release, especially bowling doosra.

Cricketers called for throwing in a match but legal[edit]

Those marked in bold were called for throwing in a Test match.

Cricketers not called in a match[edit]

Players who have been reported to the ICC because of official concerns about their bowling actions but never called in a match. They were all cleared to continue bowling without sanction.

Harbhajan, pictured here bowling in the nets.

Cricketers called in a match and sanctioned[edit]

Players who have been reported to the ICC because of official concerns about their bowling actions and subsequently sanctioned.

  • Shoaib Akhtar (PAK) – in December 1999 but overturned almost immediately
  • Shabbir Ahmed (PAK) – in December 2005 for 12 months, previously reported in 1999, 2004 and twice in 2005, including the 12-month ban.
  • James Kirtley (ENG) – in October 2005 by England and Wales Cricket Board, also reported by umpire in the ODI debut in 2001
  • Johan Botha (RSA) – in February 2006 by ICC until passing a subsequent test to prove that action has been rectified. In November 2006, he was cleared to resume bowling at international level. He was again reported in April 2009, and his doosra was banned.
  • Abdur Razzak (BAN) – December 2008 but lifted in March 2009.
  • Shane Shillingford (WI) – reported in November 2010,[2] banned in December 2010,[3] but cleared to play in June 2011 following remedial work.[4]
  • Shane Shillingford (WI) – reported in November 2013 again, banned in December 2013.[5]
  • Marlon Samuels (WI) – banned in December 2013 by the testing facility; however ICC ruled only his quicker deliveries illegal.[6]

In March 2014, following an intellectual property dispute surrounding upper limb modelling protocols, the University of Western Australia withdraws its services to International Cricket Council and the ICC take all testing in house.

See also[edit]

Further reading[edit]


  1. ^ "2nd Test: England v New Zealand at Nottingham, Aug 7-12, 1986". Cricinfo.
  2. ^ "Shane Shillingford reported for suspect action". Cricinfo.
  3. ^ "Shane Shillingford suspended from bowling". Cricinfo.
  4. ^ "Shane Shillingford cleared to resume bowling". Cricinfo.
  5. ^ "ICC suspends Shillingford for illegal bowling action". Cricinfo. 2013-12-16.
  6. ^ "Marlon Samuels' action cleared by ICC". Cricbuzz.
  7. ^ "Senanayake banned from bowling due to action". Cricinfo.
  8. ^ "Kane Williamson: NZ & Yorkshire off-spinner banned over action". BBC Sport.
  9. ^ "Saeed Ajmal banned from bowling". Cricinfo.
  10. ^ "Sohag Gazi suspended from bowling". Cricinfo.
  11. ^ "Taskin and Sunny suspended from bowling due to actions". Cricinfo.

External links[edit]