Haider’s threats leave cricket fraternity in Pak worried

Karachi: Pakistan’s refugee wicketkeeper, Zulqarnain Haider’s threats to expose PCB officials involved in corruption has left the cricketing fraternity in the country worried.

Haider had fled to London after allegedly receiving death threats from match-fixers when he was in Dubai for an ODI series against South Africa and retired from international cricket in a hush.

“We have reviewed the report of the fact-finding committee that was formed to investigate into Haider’s decision to leave the team hotel. And we will soon be contacting him in this regard,” a board official said.

The fraternity is also worried that fresh controversies could leave Pakistan cricket in a very precarious position, especially with the ICC pressurising it to make reforms to its cricket system.

“The 2011 World Cup is around the corner and these unconfirmed reports about some countries having reservations over playing against us in the future tour programme because of the spot-fixing scandal are worrisome,” a former Test player said.

The wicketkeeper had claimed that he was threatened by people who wanted him to fix matches during the one-day series against South Africa.

“Just wait for two more days and I will come out with everything. Right now I am just waiting because of the threats made to my family in Lahore,” Haider said from London.

“I hate corruption and I can’t stay silent for long,” Haider said.

“I just want the government to assure security for my family. All the people who are questioning my integrity and intention right now will know the truth soon,” he added.

Haider said no sane person in his right mind would ever sacrifice his international cricket career just to seek asylum in a foreign country.

“Only I know about the circumstances in which I decided to leave the team hotel and reach London. I had made to the national team and there was no reason for me to put my career at stake.”

Haider said he was concerned about his family because they were getting regular threats. He confirmed that he would be appearing for an interview at the British home office in the coming week over his application for asylum in the United Kingdom.