PCB chief slaps $1.6-million notice on Akhtar

April 3rd, 2008 - 7:39 pm ICT by admin  

Lahore, April 3 (IANS) Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Nasim Ashraf Thursday issued a notice to fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar, demanding that he withdraw various charges levelled him, apologise unconditionally and pay Rs.100 million ($1.6 million) in damages. In his legal notice, Ashraf accused Akhtar of claiming in a media interview that Ashraf had pressurised him and other unnamed Pakistani players to give the PCB chief a part of the payments they would get from the lucrative Indian Premier League (IPL) Twenty20 tournament starting April 18.

The PCB banned Shoaib Akhtar Tuesday from all cricket for five years for breach of discipline.

With this legal notice, Akhtar’s appearance in the IPL looks highly unlikely, unless he tenders an unconditional apology, as Ashraf has sought. Akhtar was bought by Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan’s IPL Kolkata team for $425,000 at the players’ auction.

Ashraf has taken exception to Akhtar’s interview to Pakistan’s Express News Channel telecast Wednesday.

Akhtar was banned by a PCB disciplinary committee, but gave Akhtar an opportunity to appeal against the ruling.

“He can’t play for Pakistan or anywhere in Pakistan, but he can play in the Indian Premier League, to which we he have no jurisdiction,” Ashraf told reporters Tuesday.

Akhtar had appeared before a disciplinary committee in February after being charged with publicly criticising the board over his retainership. He was already on two years’ probation for hitting teammate Mohammad Asif with a bat before the start of the World Twenty20 Championship in South Africa in September last year.

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