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Shaoib Malik expresses surprise at Yousuf's accusation

Karachi, Nov 8 : Pakistan captain Shoaib Malik has reportedly expressed surprise at batsman Mohammad Yousuf's statement in which he said that because of captain's attitude he was forced to join the Indian Cricket League (ICL), considered as "rebel" to BCCI-promoted Indian Premier League (IPL).

Malik said that he had a perfectly normal relationship with Yousuf, and added that he didn't agree with his (Yousuf's) criticism.

"I am surprised by Yousuf's allegations. He never came to me and talked about any issue. I had a perfectly normal relationship with him and we practised together regularly," the Daily Times quoted Malik as saying.

The Pakistan skipper said that he gave respect to all the players in the national team. "I am disappointed at his decision to join the ICL but more disappointed he has said such things," he said and added Yousuf's loss would be felt by the team as he was "a very experienced batsman" but life had to go on.

"It is a setback for us but we have to move on and play like a team. I don't like to dwell on the past. What is done is done," added the Pakistani skipper.

Malik questioned Yousuf's contentions, claiming that there was no 'communications gap' with senior players in the team. "I don't agree with his criticism. There was no communication gap - I have played with senior players like Inzamam and Yousuf my whole career. All senior players have been supportive. I have learnt a lot from them. I never felt Yousuf was upset over anything," he said.

Malik also said that his team was well prepared for the next week's three-match ODI series against the West Indies in Abu Dhabi. Pakistan would give their best against the West Indies, he added.

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Story first published: Saturday, November 8, 2008, 16:46 [IST]
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