Pakistan~~s Latif gets all clear after big injury scare

Published: Monday, November 18, 2002, 21:55 [IST]
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Karachi: Pakistan's first choice wicket-keeper Rashid Latif on Monday said experts have given him the all clear to resume playing after an injury scare that threatened his career. "I am thankful to almighty Allah that doctors in South Africa have given me an all clear to play as my neck injury is not as severe as diagnosed earlier in Zimbabwe," Latif said. The 34-year-old Latif's career seemed in jeopardy after reports last week from Zimbabwe that doctors had diagnosed severe problem and warned that he risked paralysing his left side if he continued to play. "I was very worried. But on the instructions of the Pakistan Cricket Board, I went for a complete check-up in Johannesburg after pulling out of Test matches in Zimbabwe," said the star wicket-keeper, who has played 34 Tests and 140 One-dayers for Pakistan. Latif's place was taken by Akmal Sikander in the on-going Test series in Zimbabwe. Latif denied he hid his injury before going on tour. "I would never hide my injury because it would be a loss to the team. Actually the problem arose when I had nets in cold and rainy conditions in Harare and I felt a sudden numbness in my left shoulder," he said. PCB had said its panel of doctors would examine Latif's reports before deciding on whether to send him back or not. Latif could also be fined $ 1,000 if team physiotherapist Dennis Waight's report reveals he was unfit before going on the tour. Latif appeared in a club match in Karachi on Sunday and said he did not feel any problems. "I just wanted to check for myself how I felt. Thank God, I did not feel any problem at all despite the fact I did some running on the field," Latif said. "I am extremely hopeful of playing the One-day series in Zimbabwe and South Africa. If I am not able to do that then I would go for the Tests in South Africa," he said. Pakistan is scheduled to play five One-dayers in Zimbabwe after their two match Test series is over and then play five one-days and two Tests in South Africa.

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