Brawl charge: Action against Shoaib deferred


Lahore : The Pakistan Cricket Board’s (PCB) disciplinary committee met here for over six hours but failed to decide on the fate of controversial fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar – and hopes to do this by Wednesday.

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“Though we have done a lot of work but still, some important things are to be discussed and hopefully the committee will be announcing the decision by Wednesday,” Shafqat Naghmi, who heads the three-member committee, told reporters after Saturday’s meeting.

The inquiry was initiated against Shoaib after he allegedly hit fellow fast bowler Mohammad Asif with a bat prior to the start of the Twenty20 World Championships in South Africa last month.

Shoaib was sent home immediately after the incident.

“Though the disciplinary committee had surprisingly dropped the main issue of the Shoaib-Asif saga while framing the charges against Shoaib Friday, the same issue was again raised before the start of the inquiry Saturday,” Dawn reported Sunday.

Shoaib’s lawyer Balal Minto told Dawn that he had gone to the inquiry venue Saturday to reply to the three allegations that were levelled against Shoaib a day earlier, only to discover that yet another charge had been slapped.

“When we reached the PCB headquarters, we were shocked since the committee handed us with the additional charge of Shoaib hitting Asif with the bat,” he said.

Minto contested this, saying that since the incident had not occurred during a cricket match, the charge of bringing the game into disrepute did not apply.

Pakistan captain Shoaib Malik, all-rounder Shahid Afridi, manager Talat Ali and Asif appeared before the committee Saturday.

Afridi, also a party to the case, told reporters he had pardoned Shoaib due to the sanctity of the Holy month of Ramadan. Shoaib used abusive language against his family before hitting Asif with the bat, an allegation the victim had also levelled, Afridi pointed out.