In a conversation with former India cricketer-turned-commentator Sanjay Manjrekar on ESPNCricinfo's podcast, Akhtar claimed that ICC has not done much to maintain the balance of the game between batsmen and bowlers.
Discussing the rule changes by the ICC, which have forced to fast bowlers and spinners to add more variations to their kitty to stay relevant, Akhtar said, "Can I tell you something bluntly? They (ICC) are finishing the cricket. I am openly saying that in last 10 years, ICC has successfully finished cricket, and I would say job well done guys. Jo socha thaa apne woh kiya (You did what you intended to)."
During the same interaction, the Rawalpindi Express also spoke about the restrictions on bouncers, which has also made life easier for batsmen. According to him, the present bouncer rule needs to change.
"I have been saying repeatedly that change bouncer rule. You have two new balls and four fielders outside. Please ask ICC whether in last 10 years, quality of cricket has gone up or gone down. Where are those Sachin versus Shoaib contests," Akhtar questioned.
Akhtar was known for his duels with Tendulkar during his playing days. Speaking about the rivalry between the two, the ex-fast bowler stated, "I would try to outthink him. Like in the 2006 tour of Pakistan, I knew he had tennis elbow problems and he can't hook or pull me, so I bowled a barrage of bouncers to keep him quiet."
Akhtar and Manjrekar also discussed how present-day run-machine Virat Kohli would have fared again the likes of Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis."He could have judged himself where he stood in front of these bowlers," Akhtar added.
--By A Cricket Correspondent