Hampshire approaches Wasim to replace banned Warne
Published: Monday, February 24, 2003, 23:53 [IST]
Copyright AFP 2001
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Johannesburg: Pakistani veteran Wasim Akram has been approached by English county Hampshire to replace Australia's banned spinner Shane Warne for next season, sources said on Monday. Warne, who played for Hampshire in 2000 and had signed another two-year contract, was banned from all cricket by the Australian Cricket Board on Saturday after testing positive for a banned diuretic. Wasim, who played for Lancashire for 10 years, is expected to confirm whether he will turn out for the new county later this week. Hampshire had signed on ex-Zimbabwe all-rounder Neil Johnson last season when it finished seventh in the county championship First Division and was relegated to the Second for the next season. Hampshire chairman Rod Bransgrove had been quoted recently as saying the county wanted a high profile bowler if Warne was not available for any reason. Wasim, 36, left Lancashire in 1998 after the Old Trafford-based county signed on Sri Lankan spinner Muthiah Muralitharan. Wasim had been approached by Glamorgan last season but negotiations broke down over a pay dispute.