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Sunday, May 8, 2011

Kaneria’s case going nowhere

The case of discarded Test leg-spinner Danish Kaneria, which is under the investigation of The Pakistan Cricket Board’s (PCB) integrity committee, is going nowhere with the board officials changing their statement time and time again.

A few days back Kaneria publicly stated that he is being neglected by the PCB and felt let down by the cold shoulder he has received from the people sitting at the helm of affairs.

According to the player, he had tried to contact the board officials for nearly two months. But he failed to get any sort of response, which forced him to appeal to President Asif Ali Zardari — the patron in chief of the board — to provide him justice.

According to sources, his appeal prompted the PCB to write a letter to Kaneria on May 4, asking him to send a clearance letter of the Essex Cricket County (ECC). But, ‘The News’ has learnt that the player had already submitted the ECC, Essex Police and International Cricket Council’s (ICC) clearance letters last year, which were sent to Chief Operating Officer (COO) Subhan Ahmed and Director Cricket Operations (International) Zakir Khan.

After enjoying less fruitful meeting with board’s integrity committee, Kaneria tried to involve his lawyer in the case but was strictly ordered by the PCB not to do so and was further asked to submit his trial’s tape in early March.

He tried to get the required tape through his lawyer Steve Haurigan. But according to the player and his lawyer, the request was rejected. Few days later, the player told the PCB through a mail that the Police officials said that they cannot provide the tape or any recorded statement, as the prosecution was still on with his county teammate Mervyn Westfield. The letter was received by the Subhan on March 9. On the same day, Subhan changed his stance and ordered the player to contact PCB chairman Ijaz Butt.

It has also been learnt that the player finally got the chance to have any contact with the board officials after nearly six weeks, when last Sunday his call was received by Ijaz Butt, who told the player that he should satisfy the board’s integrity committee. It is interesting to note that Butt is the head of the integrity committee.

Meanwhile, PCB’s legal adviser Taffazul Rizvi said in an interview that it is an integrity issue for the board. He added that the committee is not just made up of board members or cricketers, it has an ex-judge of the Supreme Court on it and in their opinion, Kaneria had not satisfied them so he has not been cleared

In one of the letters issued by the board, it has been mentioned that the bowler is under the charge of ‘conspire to commit fraud by abuse of position’, which has not gone down well with player and his legal team, who are pondering to take further step over the charge labeled over Kaneria.

After being released by Essex, the 31-year-old received an offer from Surrey Cricket Country. But after being mysteriously dropped from Pakistan team for the tour of Abu Dhabi against South Africa, Surrey drew back their offer and told the player they were unsure of what has been going on in Pakistan.
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