Karachi, Nov 23 : Amid claims made by disgraced and suspended Pakistani fast bowler Mohammad Asif that he was being approached by the "rebel" Indian Cricket League (ICL) with a lucrative offer, reliable sources have said that Asif was simply blackmailing the PCB by spreading false rumours about the "ICL offer".
A source close to former Pakistan captain Moin Khan, who is the sole ICL recruiting agent in the country, said that the rebel league had no intentions of signing up the dope-tainted Pakistan pacer.
Asif is presently locked in an expensive legal battle to avoid a possible two-year ban after testing positive for a banned drug while playing in the official Indian Premier League (IPL) this May.
"If ICL had made any offer to Asif, it would have come through Moin. Moin doesn't have any information whether ICL was interested in signing up Asif and it is quite apparent that the player is spreading rumours to pressurise the PCB," The News quoted the source as saying.
A few days back, reports had emerged that Asif had been offered a lucrative contract by the ICL, which currently has 18 Pakistan cricketers on its payrolls.
Confirming these reports, Asif said that he had no option but to defect to ICL since the PCB had suspended him from all cricket over a positive dope test, which Asif's second in two years. In a recent interview, he said: "I am frustrated. When no one is coming to my support I have no other option left to join the ICL for which other Pakistani players are also playing.My career has come to a halt and no one is bothering."
Story first published: Sunday, November 23, 2008, 15:28 [IST]
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