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Karachi: Jul 27, 2011
The long serving manager of the Pakistan cricket team Intikhab Alam has refused to be drawn into a controversy involving the ball tampering scandal surrounding the national team.
Former PCB chief executive Arif Ali Khan Abbasi has accused Intikhab of pressurising national team players to tamper with the ball during the days when he was coach of the national side.
“These comments are unfortunate and sad as I have worked a lot with Abbasi. I don’t want to dwell back into the past at all,” Intikhab said when asked about the accusations made against him.
The former Test captain also said he had a clear conscience and had never done anything that was against the interest of Pakistan cricket.
“I never pressurised any player to tamper with the ball. It is a pack of lies. This is a very serious accusation but I respect Abbasi a lot so I leave everything to God,” he added.
Abbasi had said in an interview on a television show that Intikhab used to pressurise former Test batsman Basit Ali and make him rough up the ball that could be used effectively by the pace bowlers to obtain reverse swing.
“When Basit refused to tamper with the ball, a campaign was launched against him to oust him from the team and discredit him,” Abbasi has claimed.
Abbasi has been on the warpath with Intikhab ever since the Pakistan manager said in an interview that he was given the task of calling up Imran Khan in 1981 and offering him the chance to captain the Pakistan team.
Abbasi refuted Intikhab’s claim and instead accused him of accusing Basit Ali of match fixing.
A former test player said the allegations being made by Abbasi were unfortunate as it was only spoiling the image of Pakistan cricket.
“I don’t understand what is the purpose of saying all this now. Even if the ball was being tampered with by the players with the knowledge of their coach what purpose is it serving now. Times have now changed,” the player who declined to be named said.
Intikhab served in various positions during the time Abbasi was in the board and was one of his most trusted men.
After the 1996 World Cup, when allegations surfaced that Wasim Akram had deliberately missed the World Cup quarter final against India at Bangalore by faking an injury, Abbasi and Intikhab combined to get the team doctor Dan Kiesel to issue a medical certificate and statement confirming Wasim’s injury in the tournament.
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