Muhammad Asif likely to miss entire tour of India

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Mohammad Asif's elbow injury may rule him out of Pakistan's tour to India altogether, as the Pakistan board mull several medical options to resolve a problem that refuses to go away.

Asif was initially withdrawn from Pakistan's squad for the first three ODIs, on the day Pakistan left for India, but his right elbow continues to trouble him. A board official said that the chances of Asif joining the team for any of the remaining ODIs or Tests are very slim.

"The elbow is still causing him trouble. We are considering different medical options because the problem has refused to go away and has troubled him for much of the last year. Right now, it is looking very doubtful that Asif will take any part in India at all,"

the official said.

Nasim Ashraf, chairman PCB, revealed recently that Asif might have to go to Australia to receive treatment on the injury.

"We have two reports on his injury. One specialist says he requires surgery, another feels he can recover without surgery. We have sent his reports to a top specialist in Australia and we are awaiting his response,"

Ashraf said.

The board, according to Ashraf, are also considering preventing their fast bowlers from playing county cricket, to prevent them from being overworked and risk injuring themselves. Already this season, Umar Gul and Asif have been stopped from playing county cricket, though the board compensated both financially.

Asif's elbow first caused him problems on the tour to England last year, where after a brief, but high-workload stint with Leicestershire, he had to sit out the first three Tests of the summer series. Since then, the problem has plagued him intermittently, generally flaring up after he has bowled an excessive number of overs in Tests.

The same injury forced Asif to miss four out of five ODIs against South Africa at home recently.

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