Holmes, the ‘English Murali’, released by Warwickshire

Warwickshire have released off-spinner Maurice Holmes whose controversial bowling action was under scrutiny for most of the second half of the season.

The 21-year-old Loughborough University student was suspended from bowling in all competitive cricket after he was tested by an independent review panel following two reports from umpires in  the first half of the season.

The ban was later relaxed to allow Holmes to play for Barnt Green in the Birmingham & District Premier League and for Warwickshire in county second team cricket but not at first team level.

Holmes’s action was re-tested last Friday (September 16) but Warwickshire have decided not to renew his summer contract for next season and his details have been circulated to other counties.

“Ultimately it was a decision based on performance,” said Warwickshire’s director of cricket Ashley Giles. “Of our two young spinners it is Chris Metters who has really taken the bull by the horns this year.”

Holmes played in only one County Championship and three Clydesdale Bank 40 matches during his time with Warwickshire and his action was first reported in the CB40 match against Leicestershire at Edgbaston in May.

He was nicknamed the ‘English Murali’ by former Warwickshire batsman Andy Moles because his bowling action was similar to Sri Lanka off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan.

Holmes was invited to bowl at New Zealand’s players, while Moles was their national coach, to help prepare them for facing Muralitharan.

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