Shoaib`s Commitment Questioned

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Nasim Ashraf has questioned Shoaib Akhtar's desire to play for the national team.

Shoaib, who was signed by Kolkata for $425,000 in Wednesday's Indian Premier League (IPL) auction, has been under-fire from the PCB following a series of run-ins with the governing body.

The 32-year-old initially refused to answer a PCB notice sent to him last year after he criticised the board for questioning his fitness on the tour to India in December.

Shoaib later changed his mind and replied to the letter, which also included an apology, however the PCB is now set to put the case in front of a disciplinary committee.

"His case is not closed. He has breached the code of conduct and we will refer his case to the PCB disciplinary committee. The committee will decide his future,"

Ashraf told the Daily News.

But the chairman is certain that Shoaib has no interest in Pakistan cricket as the fast bowler decided against asking the PCB for a 'No Objection Certificate' before approaching the IPL.

Ashraf said:

"When the PCB issues an NOC to any player it means the player is bound to play for the national team whenever required.

"And the NOC is issued only to those players who are playing under the conditions applied by the board.

"Since Shoaib did not ask for the NOC and joined the IPL on his own, this clearly suggests that he has no intentions of playing for the national side."

The PCB has failed to rein in Shoaib, who is currently under probation and without a central contract, since the World Twenty20 incident when the fast bowler hit team-mate Mohammad Asif with a bat.

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