While formally announcing his retirement from all forms of cricket, Pakistan off-spinner Saeed Ajmal has lashed out at the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) for not fighting his case well with the International Cricket Council (ICC) following his suspension for an illegal bowling action.
Though the 40-year-old admitted that the PCB had helped him a lot throughout his career, he insisted that the country's cricket board should have raised the matter of his bowling action before the ICC as there is a shortage of off-spinners in the team.
"PCB helped me in my career; but I am sorry to say that they did not fight my case well with the ICC when they suspended me," the Dawn quoted Ajmal, as saying.
The off-spinner called it quits after Faisalabad - the team he plays for in the domestic circuit - slumped to a defeat at the hands of Lahore Whites in the semi-final of the National T20 series on Wednesday.
Ajmal's cricketing career might have ended with the team's defeat, but he performed well at an individual level conceding just 13 runs in his four overs while also bagging Raza Ali Dar's all-important wicket.
Following the match, Ajmal was given a guard of honour by the players from both the teams.
An emotional Ajmal expressed gratitude to his parents, wife and friends for supporting him throughout his roller-coaster career.
"I thank the PCB, my Club and the Faisalabad region for their support and encouragement throughout my career," Ajmal added.
Having notched up a total of 178 wickets in 35 Tests, Ajmal was ranked as the number one bowler in ODIs and was also very impressive in the longest format of the game before being suspended for exceeding the 15-degree elbow flex limit set by the International Cricket Council (ICC) in September 2014
The spin maestro then underwent remedial work and was cleared to bowl again in February last year. However, he played just one match since remodelling his action when he last turned up in Pakistan colours in a Twenty20 match against Bangladesh in April 2015.