Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Mohammad Asif: caught in Dubai, bowled by PCB

By John Cheeran
There is nothing shocking about an athlete being caught with illegal drugs in his bag at an international airport.
Mohammad Asif is not the first cricketer to have been tempted by drugs. Many stupid people have been caught in situations similar to that of Asif’s. And cricket is no longer a gentleman’s game.
This man- Asif- has a history of substance abuse and two years ago was banned from the game for using nandrolone.
Asif and Shoaib Akhtar, tested positive in an internal dope test conducted by the Pakistan board in October 2006. Asif was initially banned for one year, though the ban was overturned on appeal a month later.
What, however, is disgusting is that International Cricket Council has lost its face at a place where it has set up its headquarters. And Dubai’s zero-tolerance to drugs is well known.
Asif has let down his faith, which must have shaped him as a man, and his practice, the game which has raised him from the grime of daily life in an average Pakistan street.
Much of the blame lies with Pakistan Cricket Board. It has consistently refused to look facts in their face. Even today, Nadeem Akram, a PCB official, desperately defended the bowler by saying the substance that has landed Asif in trouble was a small bit of powder, given by a hakeem, a traditional Islamic healer, five-six months ago in Dubai.
It is really interesting that Indian narcotics authorities did not find this bit of white powder in Asif’s wallet, which PCB claims to have been with the bowler for the last six months, when he went to India to play in the IPL.
What Asif Mohammad needs is help; help to kick the habit.
Not some sloppy defence from the PCB.
And by defending in such a crude manner the PCB is helping neither the bowler nor the game.

No comments:

John Cheeran at Blogged