Pakistan defend Gul against ball-tampering claims

Updated: 16 June 2009 07:39 IST

Pakistan coach Intikhab Alam came to the defence on Monday of paceman Umar Gul following suggestions of ball-tampering.

Pakistan defend Gul against ball-tampering claims

London:

Pakistan coach Intikhab Alam came to the defence on Monday of paceman Umar Gul following suggestions of ball-tampering.

New Zealand are understood to have spoken with match officials to clarify that Gul's record international Twenty20 figures of five wickets for six runs against the Black Caps at the Oval had been achieved legitimately.

"It is disappointing to hear these things," said Alam. "Umar is a fantastic bowler," the former Pakistan leg-spinner added.

The matter is now set to be closed after officials told the New Zealand management they had no queries regarding Pakistan's conduct in the field.

It was at the Oval in 2006 that Pakistan became the first side in history to forfeit a Test match when they refused to take the field after Australian umpire Darrell Hair, supported by his West Indian colleague Billy Doctrove, penalised them five runs for ball-tampering.

Alam, who played at the Oval for Surrey throughout the 1970s, was adamant Gul's feat had been achieved by entirely proper means.

"Not everyone can bowl a reverse ball," he said. "You've got to have a special ability to do that.

"He's quick and his action makes a lot of difference."

Pakistan were back at the Oval on Monday for their final Super Eights match against Ireland.

Topics : Cricket Sreesanth
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