Pakistan to use Akhtar book in court case
Pakistan cricket authorities said Wednesday they would use confessions made by retired paceman Shoaib Akhtar in his autobiography in court to justify disciplining the former international.
In the book, launched last week in India, Akhtar confessed to ball-tampering and other violations of conduct during a 14-year career that was marred by injury and discipline problems before his retirement in April this year.
The book, "Controversially Yours", has riled Indian fans and media alike with harsh comments on batting greats Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid, claiming the duo were not "match winners."
Akhtar's appeal against a record seven million rupee (then $82,400) disciplinary fine imposed three years ago is pending in the Lahore high court.
Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) legal adviser Taffzul Rizvi said excerpts of the book will now be used in court against the one-time world's fastest bowler.
"In a writ case it is important for someone to have clean conduct and in his autobiography Akhtar has confessed to breach of discipline and has not come out clean, so we will use them in the court case," Rizvi told AFP.
Akhtar was banned for five years after he criticised the PCB for axing him from the central contracts in early 2008.
His suspension was later reduced to 18 months, and although the fine was imposed, he was allowed to play international cricket.
In October 2007, Akhtar was banned for 13 matches and fined 3.4 million rupees for hitting teammate Mohammad Asif with a bat just days before the Twenty20 World Cup in September in South Africa.
"Akhtar has confessed to all breaches of contract which justifies PCB's action of 2008," said Rizvi. "He has also violated his central contract which remains intact until year after a player's retirement," said Rizvi.
PCB chairman Ijaz Butt also took a swipe at Akhtar.
"Akhtar is talking nonsense and we will take action officially once we get the book," Butt said earlier this week. "His comments can hamper our efforts of reviving cricket series with India."
Former captain Shoaib Malik, who Akhtar described as "a stooge of former PCB chairman Nasim Ashraf," said no one should take the book seriously.
"We should not take him seriously and his allegations are not worthy of response," said Malik.