Rameez justifies ban on Shoaib; slams Imran

Published: Friday, April 4, 2008, 3:35 [IST]
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Lahore: Endorsing the PCB's decision to ban Shoaib Akhtar, former Pakistan captain Rameez Raja has come hard on the temperamental fast bowler saying he himself is to be blamed for the 'self-destruction' and is hoping that the decision is not overturned.

''Shoaib shot himself in the foot and there's nobody else to blame,'' Rameez told The Telegraph.

''Something like this was waiting to happen and there's a very clear sequence to Shoaib's self-destruction.

''He has always been a problem child where Pakistan cricket is concerned,'' he said.

Earlier on Tuesday, Akhtar was banned for five years by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) disciplinary committee for a series of discipline violations.

However, the 32-year-old Akhtar has decided to appeal against the board's ruling.

''I hope this ban isn't overturned. A process has been followed.

The procedure has been respected and it's not that one individual has banned him.

''I'd be very disappointed if an appeals body overturns this latest punishment,'' he added.

Rameez also criticised former team mate Imran Khan for standing in support of Akhtar and accused the only captain to have won a World Cup for Pakistan of maintaining 'double standards'.

''Having played under Imran, I feel totally let down and gutted.

As captain, he'd been firm on discipline. Imran would never compromise on erratic behaviour and he'd stand for principles.

''It's sad that Pakistan's greatest cricketer is now singing a different tune and is indulging in double standards.

''Imran has politicised the ban. Obviously, support from some of the greats has emboldened Shoaib. Imran's statements have definitely given him strength,'' he added.


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