Islamabad, June 20: Tearaway speedster Shoaib Akhtar
has been denied permission by the Pakistan Cricket Board to
participate in a contest for determining the world's fastest
bowler proposed to be staged later this year in India.
A day after organisers IMG confirmed that Akhtar and
Australian paceman Brett Lee would take part in the ten-bowler
contest, PCB outrightly rejected the idea of sending their
bowler to India.
"There is no question of Shoaib Akhtar joining the
proposed competition before the World Cup (early next year)," PCB spokesman Khalid Butt was quoted by a television channel as saying today.
"Even after the World Cup his appearance would be subject
to the approval by the board," he said.
Though PCB did not specify any particular reason for its
decision, the obvious aim is to protect the bowler from
possible injuries. Shoaib has been very susceptible to
injuries and has been afflicted with problems in his knee,
ankle, stomach, shoulder, groin and ribs in the past.
"Shoaib is a valuable asset of Pakistan and he cannot be
allowed to appear in any competition without the proper
permission of the board," Butt said.