Thatscricket - News - Hoopster Johnson my role model: Azhar

Published: Wednesday, March 28, 2001, 20:45 [IST]
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Hyderabad: Former India captain Mohammed Azharuddin, who announced the launch of 'Azhar Sangeeta Management Services Private Limited Company, a business-cum-charity venture for raising funds to help victims of aids and other dreaded diseases, on Saturday revealed that his role model was the legendary American hoopster Michael Johnson. In his nearly hour-long interaction with the media during a press conference along with his wife Sangeeta Bijlani, the stylish Hyderabadi batsman answered a wide range of questions from cricket to politics.He said he felt very sad the day he learnt that Michael Johnson was infected with HIV. "That day I thought something should be done for AIDS victims", he added. Though the company was formed in 1999, he was reluctant then to get into organising events and charity shows since cricket demanded all his time and energy. He was disturbed by the recent Gujarat earthquake and decided to organise a fashion show here on Sunday, the first event of his fledgling company, in aid of the quake victims. Asked whether he watched cricket on television these days, he said "on and off I watch... I have been busy with my lawyer". He, however, declined to say anything on issues relating to match-fixing scandal saying it was sub-judice.Asked what went wrong with the Indian team's performance in the first Test, Azhar said, "I don't like to say anything I have played with those people, going back and commenting is not the right thing." When a scribe said that Australians had taken lightly the allegations against Mark Waugh while a hue and cry was being made here against Indian cricketers, he said, "It is up to you to report. It would be unfair on my part to comment anything".Replying to another question, he said he was still doing regular physical exercises to keep himself fit. Asked when one could see him in white flannels again, he quipped "soon probably".Sangita said her television company, which made TV serials, was in the process of finalising contracts with regional channels. UNI

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