Farhat distances himself from Ilyas-Bob feud

Published: Tuesday, November 8, 2005, 23:53 [IST]
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Lahore:Pakistan's discarded opener Imran Farhat has distanced himself from the feud between his father-in-law Mohammad Ilyas and Pakistan coach Bob Woolmer.

According to well-informed sources, Imran Farhat went and spoke to Woolmer and made it clear he was not responsible for the behaviour or antics of Ilyas, a former Test player.

The move came after Ilyas got into an unnecessary argument with Woolmer during the Twenty20 charity match in Lahore on the Sunday before Eidul Fitr in full view of a large number of people here at the Gaddafi Stadium.

Ilyas confronted Woolmer and accused him of having the agenda of trying to destroy Pakistan cricket after accepting the coaching position with the board. This led to Woolmer filing a complaint with the Board.

The Pakistan Board has asked its Director Cricket Operations Saleem Altaf to hold an impartial inquiry into the incident and find out who is at fault. But Chairman Shaharyar Khan has already spoken to people who were present on the scene when the incident took place and got details of how Ilyas had allegedly misbehaved with Woolmer.

Interestingly, Ilyas has not been seen around the Bagh-e-Jinnah Ground here on the first two days of the tour match between England and the Pakistan A side for whom Imran Farhat is playing.

This in spite of the fact that people say he is normally a regular visitor to cricket grounds and specially when high-profile matches are played in Lahore.

A source said Imran had met with Woolmer to clear the air and any misconception that he might be responsible for what had taken place at the Gaddafi Stadium.

"Woolmer however assured him he had neither a grudge nor anything else in his mind for which he held Imran responsible and he should just concentrate on his cricket and getting runs without coming under any pressure," the source added.

The proceedings of the inquiry have been delayed as Saleem Altaf has been ill for the last few days and was not able to even be present at the meeting between the Chairman and the national selectors on Monday.

Farhat who has not played for Pakistan after being dropped after the tour to Australia has looked in good nick in the tour match against England timing the ball fluently but he still retains the weakness of not being able to wait patiently for the bad balls to come and play his shots.

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