Action against six Pakistani cricketers for violating curfew

By Awais Saleem, IANS
Sunday, November 7, 2010

ISLAMABAD - Three Pakistani cricketers, currently touring the United Arab Emirates for a one-day series against South Africa, have been fined while three others have been issued warnings for violating Dubai’s discipline code, a media report said Sunday.

The three cricketers fined UAE dirhams 500 each are wicketkeeper Zulqarnain Haider, opener Shahzaib Hasan and left-arm spinner Abdul Rehman. They had returned to the hotel where the team was staying after the curfew hours, Samaa TV reported.

Three other players - pacer Shoaib Akhtar, all-rounder Abdul Razzaq and left-handed batsman Fawad Alam - have been issued a warning for violation of discipline. The incident occurred after the players went partying late into the night after the nail-biting victory against the Proteas in Dubai on November 5.

The Pakistani team management is enforcing strict discipline on tour and the players are not allowed to meet fans or move out of the hotel without prior permission. Team manager Intikhab Alam confirmed “that disciplinary action had been taken against these players”, Samaa TV said.

The strict disciplinary regime has been enforced as a precaution following the troubled English tour when three players - Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamer - had to be withdrawn from the squad following a report in the News of the World tabloid that an alleged bookie had taken money on their behalf to indulge in spot-fixing.

The Pakistan players were seen going to parties with the alleged bookie Mazhar Majeed anmd taking gifts from him. It later transpired that he had befriended the players and was also acting as their agent to negotiate endorsement deals.

The same newspaper reporter also met batsman Yasir Hameed while faking as an advertising agent. Yasir had leveled some startling allegations against fellow players in the discussion with the reporter that was captured by a hidden camera but he later denied having said anything with an ulterior motive.

Pakistani cricketers have a history of violating discipline on tour and Shoaib Akhtar can easily be called the leader of the pack. He has been fined and handed other penalties on several occasions. During his current stint with the team, he has reportedly been told by the PCB to fall in line if he has to remain active as a player.

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