Asif eager for drugs hearing

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Mohammad Asif wants the chance to clear his name as he waits for his doping tribunal. It will decide if he is handed a two-year ban after testing positive for the banned steroid, nandrolone, during the Indian Preimer League (IPL).

Asif has been suspended by the Pakistan board and his B sample also tested positive in August, although he hopes that a discrepancy between the two readings could help his case.

"I am anxiously waiting to put my case before the IPL tribunal because I want to get my name cleared and return to where I belong - [on] cricket grounds,"

Asif told AFP.

"I am confident that I will get cleared on the basis of discrepancies in the quantity, but the first thing is to get a hearing where I could prove myself."

The tribunal will take place in front of a three-man panel set up by the IPL including former India opener Sunil Gavaskar, doctor Ravi Bapat and lawyer Shirish Gupte. The hearing had originally been due on August 30, but Asif asked for it to be pushed back.

If Asif is found guilty the ban will come from the IPL, but as it is officially sanctioned by ICC it will apply to both domestic and international cricket.

Asif is currently in Karachi to play some club cricket and aiming to stay in shape should he be able to resume his career.

"I have already missed a lot of cricket,"

he said.

"My whole career has suffered badly in the last few months and once I return I will make sure that no untoward incident happens again."

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Will Pakistan Premier League gain success just like Indian Premier League ?