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Shoaib Akhtar

Shoaib Akhtar

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Shoaib Akhtar is a former Pakistani right arm fast bowler
Fast bowling
Fast bowling, sometimes known as pace bowling, is one of the two main approaches to bowling in the sport of cricket. The other is spin bowling...

 in cricket
Cricket
Cricket is a bat-and-ball game played between two teams of 11 players on an oval-shaped field, at the centre of which is a rectangular 22-yard long pitch. One team bats, trying to score as many runs as possible while the other team bowls and fields, trying to dismiss the batsmen and thus limit the...

, who is regarded as the fastest bowler in the history of cricket. He set an official world record by achieving the fastest delivery, when he clocked in at 161.3 km/h (100.2 mph) in his bowling speed, twice at a cricket
Cricket
Cricket is a bat-and-ball game played between two teams of 11 players on an oval-shaped field, at the centre of which is a rectangular 22-yard long pitch. One team bats, trying to score as many runs as possible while the other team bowls and fields, trying to dismiss the batsmen and thus limit the...

 match against England. His ability to bowl fast yorker
Yorker
Yorker is a term used in cricket that describes a ball bowled which hits the cricket pitch around the batsman's feet. When a batsman assumes a normal stance this generally means that the cricket ball bounces on the cricket pitch on or near the batsman's popping crease...

s and quick bouncers
Bouncer (cricket)
In the sport of cricket, a bouncer is a type of delivery, usually bowled by a fast bowler. It is pitched short so that it bounces on the pitch well short of the batsman and rears up to chest or head height as it reaches the batsman.Bouncers are used tactically to drive the batsman back on to his...

 have made him one of the best fast bowlers in cricket.

However, he has been involved in several controversies during his career, often accused of not being a team player. Akhtar was sent home during the Test match series in Australia in 2005 for alleged poor attitude. A year later, he was embroiled in a drug scandal after testing positive to a banned substance. However, the ban imposed on him was lifted on court appeal. In September 2007, Akhtar was banned for an indefinite period for his fight with Pakistan team mate and fast bowler Mohammad Asif. On 1 April 2008, Akhtar was banned for five years for publicly criticizing the Pakistan Cricket Board
Pakistan Cricket Board
The Pakistan Cricket Board is a sporting organization that is responsible for governing all professional cricket including Test cricket and One Day International matches played in Pakistan...

. In October 2008, the Lahore High Court
Lahore High Court
The Lahore High Court is based in Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan. It was established as a high court on March 21, 1919. The Lahore High Court has jurisdiction over Punjab...

 in Pakistan suspended the five year ban and Akhtar was selected in the 15-man squad for the Twenty20 Quadrangular Tournament in Canada. Pakistani judge, Rana Bhagwandas
Rana Bhagwandas
His Lordship Mr. Justice Retired Rana Bhagwandas , a highly respected name of the Pakistani judiciary was a senior judge and former acting chief justice of the Supreme Court of Pakistan...

 stated once that, Akhtar is a legend of Pakistan cricket. He retired from international cricket after the 2011 World Cup
2011 Cricket World Cup
The 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup was the tenth Cricket World Cup. It was played in India, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh. It was Bangladesh's first time co-hosting a World Cup...

.

Early years


Akhtar was born at Morgah, a small town near Rawalpindi, Punjab in Pakistan to a Gujjar
Gujjar
The Gurjar are an ethnic group in India, Pakistan and Afghanistan. Alternative spellings include Gurjara, Gujar, Gurjjara and Gūrjara. The spelling Gurjara or Gurjar is preferable to the rest....

 family of Kasana (gotra)
Kasana (gotra)
Kasana or Kushane , derived from Kushan, is a Gujjar clan of Suryavanshi Kshatriyas.Kasana's are mainly found in India, Pakistan and Afghanistan.In India Kasana are found in the states of Jammu & Kashmir, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, Rajasthan, Haryana, Gujarat &...

 tribe. His father was a plant operator
Plant operator
A plant operator is a person who supervises the operation of an industrial plant. The term is usually applied to power plants or chemical plants such as gas extraction, petrochemical or oil refinery or other chemical processes....

 in Attock Oil Refinery
Attock Refinery
The Attock Refinery Limited , is the pioneer in crude oil refining in the country with its operations dating back to the early nineteen hundreds. Attock Refinery located at Rawalpindi, Punjab, Pakistan....

, Morgah. Akhtar started his studies at Elliott High School, Morgah and then took admission in the Asghar Mall College, Rawalpindi.

International career


Akhtar's run of impressive performances started in the 1990s. In 1999, during a pre-World Cup series against India, he rose to prominence. It was followed by outstanding bowling performances in Sharjah
Sharjah (city)
Sharjah is the third largest and most populous city in the United Arab Emirates. It is located along the southern coast of the Persian Gulf on the Arabian Peninsula.Sharjah is the seat of government of the emirate of Sharjah...

 and later in 1999 Cricket World Cup
1999 Cricket World Cup
-England:-Outside England:-Group A:-Results:-------------------------------------------------------------Group B:-Results:------------------------------------------------------------...

. His most significant performance was in India in 1999 when he captured eight wickets in the Asian Test championship match at Calcutta – including the wickets of Indian batsman Sachin Tendulkar
Sachin Tendulkar
Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar is an Indian cricketer widely regarded as one of the greatest batsmen in the history of cricket. He is the leading run-scorer and century maker in Test and one-day international cricket. He is the only male player to score a double century in the history of ODI cricket...

 and Rahul Dravid
Rahul Dravid
Rahul Sharad Dravid , is a cricketer in the Indian national team, of which he has been a regular member since 1996. He was appointed as the captain of the Indian cricket team in October 2005 and resigned from the post in September 2007. Dravid was honoured as one of the top-five Wisden Cricketers...

 off successive deliveries. This was Akhtar's first encounter with Sachin Tendulkar, in which Akthar bowled him off the first delivery he delivered to the batsman.

In 2002, he was selected for the Pakistan team against Australia and achieved success. However he performed poorly during the 2003 Cricket World Cup
2003 Cricket World Cup
-Group stage tables and results:The top three teams from each pool qualify for the next stage, carrying forward the points already scored against fellow qualifiers, plus a quarter of the points scored against the teams that failed to qualify.-Pool A:...

 and after the tournament he was dropped from the Pakistan squad.
He was selected back into the Pakistan squad in the 2004 Test match series against New Zealand
New Zealand cricket team
The New Zealand cricket team, nicknamed the Black Caps, are the national cricket team representing New Zealand. They played their first in 1930 against England in Christchurch, New Zealand, becoming the fifth country to play Test cricket. It took the team until 1955–56 to win a Test, against the...

, but struggled in a losing Test series against India in 2004. The series ended with a controversy when he left the field citing an injury leading to suspicions by former Pakistan captain, Inzamam-ul-Haq
Inzamam-ul-Haq
Inzamam-ul-Haq , also known as Inzamam, nicknamed Inzy, is a former Pakistan international cricketer who was national captain between 2003 and 2007. He is a right-handed batsman who has been regarded as one of the greatest batsmen of his era...

, about his commitment to the team. As a result, his relationship with Inzamam-ul-Haq
Inzamam-ul-Haq
Inzamam-ul-Haq , also known as Inzamam, nicknamed Inzy, is a former Pakistan international cricketer who was national captain between 2003 and 2007. He is a right-handed batsman who has been regarded as one of the greatest batsmen of his era...

 and former Pakistan coach Bob Woolmer
Bob Woolmer
Robert Andrew Woolmer was an international cricketer, professional cricket coach and also a professional commentator...

 deteriorated. A medical panel was set up by the Pakistan Cricket Board
Pakistan Cricket Board
The Pakistan Cricket Board is a sporting organization that is responsible for governing all professional cricket including Test cricket and One Day International matches played in Pakistan...

 to investigate the nature of his injury, however Pakistan officials dispelled all suspicions.

In 2005, Akhtar regained his reputation as a fast bowler for his side. Playing in a three Test home series against England, he made a series of impressive bowling performances. His effective use of slower deliveries proved to be unplayable by the English batsmen. Akhtar emerged as the highest wicket taker of the series with seventeen wickets. His comeback was also remarkable as prior to his return, he had been criticized from all corners-such as by the Worcestershire chairman John Elliot for his celebrity attitude and lack of commitment to team. His performance was also acknowledged by the English captain Michael Vaughan
Michael Vaughan
Michael Paul Vaughan OBE is a retired cricketer who represented Yorkshire and England. A classically elegant right-handed batsman and occasional off-spinner, Vaughan was ranked one of the best batsmen in the world following the 2002/3 Ashes, in which he scored 633 runs, including three centuries...

, who remarked "I thought he (Shoaib) was a big difference between the two teams". He is also known as the only bowler ever to break the 100 mph barrier in cricket bowling history, with a delivery of 100.2 mph, and this delivery at stands as the fastest recorded to date.

Struggle for form and consistent injuries (2007–2009)


On 29 October 2007, Akhtar made his return to cricket, from his 13 match ban and performed well, taking 4 wickets for 43 runs against South Africa in the fifth and deciding One Day International series in Lahore in Pakistan. Subsequently, he was included in the 16 man Pakistan squad for the 2007 tour of India, which he completed successfully without further incident and injury.

Rehabilitation and final years (2010–2011)


Akhtar made a return to international cricket albeit in the shorter format of the game. In May 2010, PCB named him in a list of 35 probables for the Asia Cup
2010 Asia Cup
The 2010 Asia Cup was the tenth edition of the Asia Cup cricket tournament, which was held in Sri Lanka from 15–24 June 2010. India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh were taking part in the competition. India defeated Sri Lanka by 81 runs in the final to win a record 5th Asia Cup title...

. On 15 June 2010, Akhtar made his return, taking 3 wickets for 28 runs in the first match of the Asia Cup against Sri Lanka. He narrowly missed out a spot in the 2010 ICC World Twenty20
2010 ICC World Twenty20
-------------------------------------------------Group A:---------Group B:---------Group C:---------Group D:---------Super 8s:...

 in place of the injured Umar Gul.

In July 2010, he was selected for the Twenty20 series against Australia
Australian cricket team against Pakistan in England in 2010
-2nd T20I:-1st Test:-2nd Test:-First Class: Kent vs Pakistanis:-Tour match: Derbyshire vs Australians:-Tour match: Leicestershire vs Pakistanis:-Television:* Ten Sports: India, Pakistan, Hong Kong, Singapore and Indonesia* Sky Sports: UK...

 but the selectors decided not to play him in the Test squad so that he would not get injured. He was subsequently selected for the ODI and Twenty20 series against England in September 2010.

Akhtar returned to the national side representing the country against England in the Twenty20 International. He bowled an impressive spell and returned with figures of 2 wickets for 23 runs. He continued to bowl well in the ODI series in the absence of regular fast-bowlers, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir, who were suspended by the International Cricket Council amid allegations of Spot-fixing
Spot-fixing
Spot-fixing refers to illegal activity in a sport where a specific part of a game is fixed. Examples include something as minor as timing a no ball or wide delivery in cricket or timing the first throw-in or corner in association football. Spot-fixing attempts to defraud bookmakers illegally by...

. Despite his relatively good bowling form, Pakistani coach Waqar Younis
Waqar Younis
Waqar Younis Maitla is a former Pakistani right arm fast bowler in cricket and widely regarded as one of the greatest fast bowlers of all time...

 insisted that the bowling attack must not become reliant on Akhtar, as he is 35 years of age and fitness troubles continue to affect him. Akhtar was selected for the tour of New Zealand and started his campaign off well with 3 wickets on Boxing Day in the first of two Twenty20 Internationals against New Zealand.

Akhtar was selected in Pakistan's 15-man squad to play in the 2011 World Cup
2011 Cricket World Cup
The 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup was the tenth Cricket World Cup. It was played in India, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh. It was Bangladesh's first time co-hosting a World Cup...

 hosted by Bangladesh, India, and Sri Lanka in February to March. During the tournament, he announced that he would retire from international cricket at the end of the World Cup. In September, Akhtar released his autobiography, Controversially Yours
Controversially Yours
Controversially Yours is an autobiography by former Pakistani cricket player Shoaib Akhtar....

.

England county cricket



Akhtar has played for three English
England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

 county cricket
County cricket
County cricket is the highest level of domestic cricket in England and Wales. For the 2010 season, see 2010 English cricket season.-First-class counties:...

 clubs, including Somerset
Somerset County Cricket Club
Somerset County Cricket Club is one of the 18 major county clubs which make up the English and Welsh domestic cricket structure, representing the historic county of Somerset...

 in 2001, Durham
Durham County Cricket Club
Durham County Cricket Club is one of the 18 major county clubs which make up the English and Welsh national cricket structure, representing the historic county of Durham. Its limited overs team is called the Durham Dynamos. Their kit colours are blue with yellow trim and the shirt sponsor was...

 in 2003 and 2004 and Worcestershire
Worcestershire County Cricket Club
Worcestershire County Cricket Club is one of the 18 major county clubs which make up the English and Welsh domestic cricket structure, representing the historic county of Worcestershire...

 in 2005. He did achieve his moments of success, such as taking 5 wickets for 35 runs for Durham against Somerset in the National League
National League (cricket)
The NatWest Pro40 League was a one-day cricket league for first-class cricket counties in England and Wales. It was inaugurated in 1999, but was essentially the old Sunday League retitled to reflect the fact that large numbers of matches were played on days other than Sunday.-Sunday League:The...

 in 2003 and claiming 6 wickets for 16 runs in the same competition for Worcestershire against Glamorgan
Glamorgan County Cricket Club
Glamorgan County Cricket Club is one of the 18 major county clubs which make up the English and Welsh national cricket structure, representing the historic county of Glamorgan aka Glamorganshire . Glamorgan CCC is the only Welsh first-class cricket club. Glamorgan CCC have won the English County...

 two years later, but he suffered from fitness problems, as well as a perception that he was less than interested in his task. This was particularly the case at Worcestershire: chairman John Elliott said "Players like that are no good to our club. In fact, Akhtar has been no good for any club he's been at. He's a superstar and just does what he wants."

Indian Premier League


Akhtar made a successful return to cricket in his first game in the Indian Premier League
Indian Premier League
The Indian Premier League is a professional league for Twenty20 cricket competition in India. It was initiated by the Board of Control for Cricket in India , headquartered in Mumbai, and is supervised by BCCI Vice President Rajeev Shukla, who serves as the league's Chairman and Commissioner...

, playing for the Kolkata Knight Riders
Kolkata Knight Riders
Kolkata Knight Riders is the franchise representing Kolkata in the Indian Premier League, a Twenty20 cricket tournament. Sourav Ganguly led the team in IPL1 and IPL3, Brendon McCullum in IPL2, and Gautam Gambhir in IPL4...

 against the Delhi Daredevils
Delhi Daredevils
Delhi Daredevils is the Delhi franchise for the Indian Premier League in cricket. The franchise is owned by the GMR Group.-Franchise history:...

. Defending a low score of 133 runs, Akhtar took four top order wickets which ultimately led to the Daredevils being restricted to 110 runs. He ended with figures of 4 wickets for 11 runs from three overs, a performance which earned him the player of the match award. Akhtar denied that he had any point to prove with his performance, stating, "I just wanted to win the game." Knight Riders' captain Sourav Ganguly
Sourav Ganguly
Sourav Chandidas Ganguly is a former Indian cricketer, and captain of the Indian national team. Born into an affluent family, Ganguly was introduced into the world of cricket by his elder brother Snehasish. He is regarded as one of India's most successful captains in modern times. He started his...

 also acknowledged Akhtar's performance, "He came to the country with lots [of things] happening behind him...But he showed a lot of character." It has been widely reported that the Knight Riders have released Akhtar from his contract due to his injury history but the Knight Riders' officials have denied these reports and said they are still in talks with the fast bowler.

He has also played for Cyclones of Chittagong
Cyclones of Chittagong
Cyclones of Chittagong is the franchise representing Chittagong in the Bangladesh NCL Twenty20, a Twenty20 cricket tournament. The team is led by Nafees Iqbal. Tamim Iqbal is their team's Icon Player. The official colors are blue and white. The team also has three players who are iconic...

 in Bangladesh's NCL T20 Bangladesh
Bangladesh NCL (National Cricket League) Twenty20
The National Cricket League Twenty 20 , is a Twenty20 cricket competition initiated by the Bangladesh Cricket Board...

.

Cricket controversies and injuries


Akhtar's career has been plagued with injuries, controversies and accusations of poor attitude. After rising into international stardom at a young age due to his speed, due to his interesting personality and charisma glamour seemed to follow him, some say at the detriment of his sporting focus. Although he eventually crossed the 100 mph barrier, his attitude took its toll on his reputation as well as his fitness. After a poor performance in the 2003 Cricket World Cup, he got involved in a verbal conflict with former Pakistan captain and fast bowler Waqar Younis
Waqar Younis
Waqar Younis Maitla is a former Pakistani right arm fast bowler in cricket and widely regarded as one of the greatest fast bowlers of all time...

. Later on Akhtar was sacked along with other players, including Younis. In a triangular series in 2003 held in Sri Lanka, he was caught tampering with the cricket ball
Cricket ball
A cricket ball is a hard, solid leather ball used to play cricket. Constructed of cork and leather, a cricket ball is heavily regulated by cricket law at first class level...

, making him the second player in cricket to be banned on ball tampering charges. The same year he was banned for one Test match and two One Day International matches for abusing South African spin bowler Paul Adams
Paul Adams (cricketer)
Paul Regan Adams is a former South African cricketer, a chinaman bowler who played for the national team sporadically since the 1990s. Meanwhile, his first class cricket career registered 412 wickets....

, during a match against South Africa.

In the 2004 home series with India, he struggled with wrist and back injuries, which raised questions about their commitment to the team. His relationship with the captain and the coach deteriorated further partially due to team politics.

He was sent back from the 2005 Australia tour with a hamstring injury amid rumors of indiscipline, lack of commitment and attitudinal complaints. He was subsequently fined by the Pakistan Cricket Board for avoiding a late night curfew. The rest of his cricketing career was riddled with ankle and knee injuries which forced him to undergo a surgery in February 2006, until finally he was banned for two years for allegedly using performance enhancing drugs.

In November 2006, an officer assigned to the Pakistan team in India, Anil Kaul, alleged that Akhtar had slapped former coach Bob Woolmer following a fight over the music to be played in the team bus on the eve of ICC Champions Trophy. Both Akhtar and Woolmer have strongly denied these allegations.

Drug scandal


On 16 October 2006 Akhtar was suspended by the Pakistan Cricket Board
Pakistan Cricket Board
The Pakistan Cricket Board is a sporting organization that is responsible for governing all professional cricket including Test cricket and One Day International matches played in Pakistan...

, along with Mohammed Asif
Mohammad Asif (Pakistani cricketer)
Mohammad Asif is a Pakistani right-arm fast medium bowler in cricket. Asif was born in Sheikhupura, and has played first-class cricket for Khan Research Labs, the National Bank, Quetta, Sheikhupura, Sialkot and Leicestershire...

 after the pair were tested positive for a performance-enhancing substance nandrolone
Nandrolone
Nandrolone is an anabolic steroid that may be present naturally in the human body, albeit in minute quantities of less than 0.4 ng/ml. Nandrolone is most commonly sold commercially as its decanoate ester and less commonly as a phenylpropionate ester...

. They were consequently pulled out from the ICC Champions Trophy 2006. Former Pakistan Cricket Board chairman later stated that he had always suspected Akhtar of substance abuse due to his consistent "reservations" to drug tests. Former Pakistan captain Inzamam ul-Haq had also previously complained about Akhtar's drug abuse but was not reported to the Pakistan Cricket Board. Pakistan news reports state that federal capital police had arrested Shoaib along with drugs some three years ago.

Akhtar immediately declared his innocence and he declined knowingly taking any performance enhancing drugs. In a statement issued to the press, he claimed that he could never cheat team-mates or opponents. During a hearing with the Pakistan Cricket Board Anti-Doping Committee, he along with Asif maintained taking non-steroidal dietary supplements. He, however, failed to convince the committee of his innocence. In its report submitted to the Pakistan Cricket Board and the Anti-Doping Committee recommended a two year ban.

On 1 November 2006 the Pakistan Cricket Board handed down a two-year suspension to Akhtar and a one-year suspension to Asif, banning them from professional cricket during the period. Shoaib had subsequently been added to Pakistan Olympic Association
Pakistan Olympic Association
Pakistan Olympic Association is the National Olympic Committee of Pakistan. The association was established in 1948 to oversee the active participation of the newly independent state at the Olympiad. Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the first Governor-General of the country also became the patron-in-chief of...

 list of doping offenders. However, on 5 December 2006 represented by his lawyer Abid Hassan Minto
Abid Hassan Minto
Abid Hassan Minto aka Abid Minto is a constitutional expert and senior lawyer of the Supreme Court of Pakistan. He is also a literary critic and a leftwing civic and political leader...

, Akhtar was cleared on appeal.

Acquittal


On 5 December 2006 Akhtar and Asif were acquitted by the tribunal appointed to review their appeals against the drugs ban imposed on them by an earlier committee. After a clear hearing from Akhtar's lawyer Abid Hassan Minto
Abid Hassan Minto
Abid Hassan Minto aka Abid Minto is a constitutional expert and senior lawyer of the Supreme Court of Pakistan. He is also a literary critic and a leftwing civic and political leader...

, the three-man committee, headed by Justice Fakhruddin Ebrahim, voted two to one in favour of the acquittal. Haseeb Ahsan, former Test cricketer and Ebrahim were in favour of the acquittal while the third member, Danish Zaheer, dissented. “Exceptional circumstances” were cited including discrepancies between the instantaneous offence charges of doping that were laid and the quick delivery of a very harsh verdict. The complete drug testing procedure was concluded to have been technically flawed as it did not follow standard procedures. Other established facts by the committee included that the duo were not aware of the banned drug to be present in their supplements because the Pakistan Cricket Board itself had not informed them of the dangers of contaminated supplements.

Both Akhtar and Asif were thankful to the Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Nasim Ashraf for giving them a fair trial and their team mates, captain and coach for the moral support. However, in 2006, they did not play in the Test match series against the West Indies because the Pakistan Cricket Board has recommended that they play domestic games first to recover form and fitness.

However, WADA, the World Anti-Doping Agency
World Anti-Doping Agency
The World Anti-Doping Agency , , is an independent foundation created through a collective initiative led by the International Olympic Committee . It was set up on November 10, 1999 in Lausanne, Switzerland, as a result of what was called the "Declaration of Lausanne", to promote, coordinate and...

 was to challenge Pakistan's decision to lift bans on fast bowlers Akhtar and Asif by taking the case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport
Court of Arbitration for Sport
The Court of Arbitration for Sport is an international arbitration body set up to settle disputes related to sport. Its headquarters are in Lausanne and its courts are located in New York, Sydney and Lausanne, Switzerland...

 in Lausanne
Lausanne
Lausanne is a city in Romandy, the French-speaking part of Switzerland, and is the capital of the canton of Vaud. The seat of the district of Lausanne, the city is situated on the shores of Lake Geneva . It faces the French town of Évian-les-Bains, with the Jura mountains to its north-west...

, Switzerland
Switzerland
Switzerland name of one of the Swiss cantons. ; ; ; or ), in its full name the Swiss Confederation , is a federal republic consisting of 26 cantons, with Bern as the seat of the federal authorities. The country is situated in Western Europe,Or Central Europe depending on the definition....

. The ICC, cricket's world governing body, has supported the WADA appeal adding that it was committed to a dope free game.

On 1 March 2007 Akhtar and Asif were ruled out of the Pakistani squad for the 2007 Cricket World Cup
2007 Cricket World Cup
The 2007 ICC Cricket World Cup was the ninth edition of the ICC Cricket World Cup tournament that took place in the West Indies from 13 March to 28 April 2007, using the sport's One Day International format...

 by team officials, minutes before the squad was to depart for the West Indies. The team management along with the Pakistan Cricket Board said their injuries were too severe to risk taking them to the Caribbean. Since neither of the two had been declared fit they had not undergone official doping tests.

On 2 July 2007 the Court of Arbitration for Sport dropped the case, ruling it had no jurisdiction to challenge the decision made by PCB.

On 21 May 2009, Akhtar was dropped from his country's World Championship Twenty20 squad because of genital viral warts, previously reported as a skin infection.

Other controversies


In August 2007, Akhtar was reported to have used foul language against Pakistan Cricket Board protesting the imposing of fine of Rs. 300,000 for indiscipline during the national camp in Karachi. In the week before the inaugural World Twenty20, held in South Africa, Akhtar was rumoured to have hit Pakistani team mate Mohammad Asif with a bat, leaving a bruise on his left thigh. According to sources, the two were involved in a dressing room spat which resulted in Asif being struck by a bat on his left thigh. Sources said the fight between the two started after Asif and Shahid Afridi
Shahid Afridi
Sahibzada Mohammad Shahid Khan Afridi , popularly known as Shahid Afridi , is a Pakistani cricketer. Between 1996 and 2011, Afridi played 27 Tests, 325 One Day Internationals, and 43 Twenty20 Internationals for the Pakistani national team...

 disagreed with Shoaib that he shared the same stature as Imran Khan
Imran Khan
Imran Khan Niazi is a Pakistani politician and former Pakistani cricketer, playing international cricket for two decades in the late twentieth century. After retiring, he entered politics...

 in Pakistan cricket and even ridiculed him for making such a comparison. The injury was not thought to be anything more serious than a bruise but a team investigation into the matter was pending. After the initial inquiry, it would found that Akhtar was at fault and he was subsequently recalled from the Twenty20 World Cup squad and was sent home. He was also banned for 5 matches by the Pakistan Cricket Board and a lifetime ban may also seem imminent. Akhtar later claimed that Afridi was responsible for the fight, saying "He made some ill remarks about my family. And I could not tolerate them." Afridi however, denied these allegations adding that Asif would have suffered more injuries but for his intervention. Even Asif chipped in saying that Akhtar was lying and that "Shahid Afridi had nothing to do with the fight." saying that "he has not apologised to me." Akhtar later patched up with his team mates including Afridi and Asif

On 1 April 2008 Akhtar was banned for five years for violating the players' code of conduct. The ban extended to all cricket for and in Pakistan. Despite the ban not preventing him from playing in the Indian Premier League
Indian Premier League
The Indian Premier League is a professional league for Twenty20 cricket competition in India. It was initiated by the Board of Control for Cricket in India , headquartered in Mumbai, and is supervised by BCCI Vice President Rajeev Shukla, who serves as the league's Chairman and Commissioner...

, the IPL governing council decided not to allow Akhtar to play in the tournament until the end of the ban or unless it is lifted. IS Bindra, a member of the council, was quoted as saying, "Even though they [the PCB] have cleared him to play for IPL, we felt that international discipline needs to be respected." Meanwhile, Akhtar vowed to go to great lengths to fight the ban, "I will appeal, as is my right. If that fails I will go to court, if that fails then I will go to the Supreme Court." On 3 April, Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Nasim Ashraf served a legal notice on Akhtar, calling on him to retract statements he made to a news channel, alleging the ban was punishment in return for refusing to give the chairman a share of his earnings from the Indian Premier League, Ashraf also sought damages of Rs100 million (approximately US$1.6 million) for "defaming him personally" and an additional Rs100 million to the Pakistan Cricket Board for "sullying the name of the Pakistan Cricket Board and the Pakistan Cricket team." A three-man appellate tribunal announced on 30 April that they had temporarily upheld Akhtar's five-year ban, deciding to revist the appeal hearing in June. Despite Akhtar's later retracting his claims and also issuing an unconditional apology for "any grief or embarrassment that may have been caused to the nation, particularly to the Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Dr Nasim Ashraf", Ashraf's legal counsel filed a Rs22 crore (approx US$3.37 million) defamation suit against Akhtar in a civil court in Lahore on 2 May. On 4 May, the Pakistan Cricket Board's appellate tribunal suspended the five-year ban for one month, until they reconvene on 4 June, allowing Akhtar to take part in the ongoing Indian Premier League. A day later, the Pakistan Cricket Board announced that they will no longer pursue the defamation suit following a reconciliation between Akhtar and chairman Nasim Ashraf at the house of Rehman Malik, a key political official, in Islamabad
Islamabad
Islamabad is the capital of Pakistan and the tenth largest city in the country. Located within the Islamabad Capital Territory , the population of the city has grown from 100,000 in 1951 to 1.7 million in 2011...

. "My honour has been vindicated and now the defamation lawsuit will not be pursued," Ashraf was quoted as saying.

On 4 September 2008, Akhtar was sent home by British immigration officials after landing at Heathrow airport without a valid working visa, authorities said he could not play without a working visa, though Akhtar had a valid visa to visit England but not a working visa, which is a prerequisite to play in county cricket. He subsequently obtained the necessary visa and returned to play with English county club Surrey.

Akhtar also threatened to sue the Pakistan Cricket Board after it was revealed that he had contracted a sexually transmitted disease (genital warts) and thus dropped from the 2009 world Twenty20 championship.

Test cricket: Five-wickets in an innings

Test cricket: Five-wickets in an innings
Number |Match |City/Country |Season
1 5/43 3 South Africa  Durban, S.A.
South Africa
The Republic of South Africa is a country in southern Africa. Located at the southern tip of Africa, it is divided into nine provinces, with of coastline on the Atlantic and Indian oceans...

 
Kingsmead  1998
2 5/75 13 Sri Lanka  Peshawar
Peshawar
Peshawar is the capital of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and the administrative center and central economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan....

, Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 
Arbab Niaz Stadium
Arbab Niaz Stadium
Arbab Niaz Stadium is a Test cricket ground in Peshawar, Khyber Pukhtunkhwa, Pakistan. It replaced the Peshawar Club Ground as the home ground for the Peshawar cricket team in 1985. The ground has hosted 17 ODIs since 1984 , and seven Test matches since 1995, most recently in 2003...

 
1999
3 5/24 16 West Indies  Sharjah
Sharjah (city)
Sharjah is the third largest and most populous city in the United Arab Emirates. It is located along the southern coast of the Persian Gulf on the Arabian Peninsula.Sharjah is the seat of government of the emirate of Sharjah...

, UAE
United Arab Emirates
The United Arab Emirates, abbreviated as the UAE, or shortened to "the Emirates", is a state situated in the southeast of the Arabian Peninsula in Western Asia on the Persian Gulf, bordering Oman, and Saudi Arabia, and sharing sea borders with Iraq, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, and Iran.The UAE is a...

 
Sharjah Cricket Association Stadium
Sharjah Cricket Association Stadium
The Sharjah Cricket Association Stadium is in the emirate of Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates. It was originally constructed in the early 1980s and has been much improved over the years...

 
2002
4 6/11 19 Australia  Colombo
Colombo
Colombo is the largest city of Sri Lanka. It is located on the west coast of the island and adjacent to Sri Jayawardenapura Kotte, the capital of Sri Lanka. Colombo is often referred to as the capital of the country, since Sri Jayawardenapura Kotte is a satellite city of Colombo...

, Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka, officially the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka is a country off the southern coast of the Indian subcontinent. Known until 1972 as Ceylon , Sri Lanka is an island surrounded by the Indian Ocean, the Gulf of Mannar and the Palk Strait, and lies in the vicinity of India and the...

 
PSS  2002
5 6/50 25 Bangladesh  Peshawar
Peshawar
Peshawar is the capital of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and the administrative center and central economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan....

, Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 
Arbab Niaz Stadium
Arbab Niaz Stadium
Arbab Niaz Stadium is a Test cricket ground in Peshawar, Khyber Pukhtunkhwa, Pakistan. It replaced the Peshawar Club Ground as the home ground for the Peshawar cricket team in 1985. The ground has hosted 17 ODIs since 1984 , and seven Test matches since 1995, most recently in 2003...

 
2003
6 5/48 27 New Zealand  Wellington, New Zealand
New Zealand
New Zealand is an island country in the south-western Pacific Ocean comprising two main landmasses and numerous smaller islands. The country is situated some east of Australia across the Tasman Sea, and roughly south of the Pacific island nations of New Caledonia, Fiji, and Tonga...

 
Basin Reserve
Basin Reserve
The Basin Reserve , is a cricket ground in Wellington, New Zealand, used for Test, first-class and one-day cricket. Some argue that its proximity to the city, its Historic Place status and its age make it the most famous cricket ground in New Zealand...

 
2003
7 6/30 27 New Zealand  Wellington, New Zealand
New Zealand
New Zealand is an island country in the south-western Pacific Ocean comprising two main landmasses and numerous smaller islands. The country is situated some east of Australia across the Tasman Sea, and roughly south of the Pacific island nations of New Caledonia, Fiji, and Tonga...

 
Basin Reserve
Basin Reserve
The Basin Reserve , is a cricket ground in Wellington, New Zealand, used for Test, first-class and one-day cricket. Some argue that its proximity to the city, its Historic Place status and its age make it the most famous cricket ground in New Zealand...

 
2003
8 5/60 30 Sri Lanka  Faisalabad
Faisalabad
Faisalabad , formerly known as Lyallpur, is the third largest metropolis in Pakistan, the second largest in the province of Punjab after Lahore, and a major industrial center in the heart of Pakistan. Before the foundation of the city in 1880, the area was very thinly populated. The population has...

, Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 
Iqbal Stadium
Iqbal Stadium
Iqbal Stadium is a Test cricket ground in Faisalabad, Pakistan. Previous names for the ground include Lyallpur Stadium, National Stadium, and City Stadium. The current name honours Pakistani poet Sir Allama Muhammad Iqbal. Capacity is 25,000. It has hosted 25 Test matches and 14 One Day...

 
2004
9 5/99 31 Australia  Perth
Perth, Western Australia
Perth is the capital and largest city of the Australian state of Western Australia and the fourth most populous city in Australia. The Perth metropolitan area has an estimated population of almost 1,700,000....

, Australia
Australia
Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

 
WACA Ground
WACA Ground
The WACA is a sports stadium in Perth, Western Australia. WACA are the initials of its owners and operators, the Western Australian Cricket Association....

 
2004
10 5/109 32 Australia  Melbourne
Melbourne
Melbourne is the capital and most populous city in the state of Victoria, and the second most populous city in Australia. The Melbourne City Centre is the hub of the greater metropolitan area and the Census statistical division—of which "Melbourne" is the common name. As of June 2009, the greater...

, Australia
Australia
Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

 
MCG
Melbourne Cricket Ground
The Melbourne Cricket Ground is an Australian sports stadium located in Yarra Park, Melbourne and is home to the Melbourne Cricket Club. It is the tenth largest stadium in the world, the largest in Australia, the largest stadium for playing cricket, and holds the world record for the highest light...

 
2004
11 5/71 36 England
English cricket team
The England and Wales cricket team is a cricket team which represents England and Wales. Until 1992 it also represented Scotland. Since 1 January 1997 it has been governed by the England and Wales Cricket Board , having been previously governed by Marylebone Cricket Club from 1903 until the end...

 
Lahore
Lahore
Lahore is the capital of the Pakistani province of Punjab and the second largest city in the country. With a rich and fabulous history dating back to over a thousand years ago, Lahore is no doubt Pakistan's cultural capital. One of the most densely populated cities in the world, Lahore remains a...

, Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 
Gaddafi Stadium
Gaddafi Stadium
Gaddafi Stadium is a cricket ground in Lahore, Pakistan. It was designed by Daghestani-born architect and engineer Nasreddin Murat-Khan who also designed Lahore's Minar-e-Pakistan and constructed by Mian Abdul Khaliq and Company in 1959. Following the ground's renovation for the 1996 Cricket World...

 
2005

Test cricket: Ten-wickets in a match

Test cricket: Ten-wickets in a match
Number |Match |City/Country |Season
1 10/80 25 Bangladesh  Peshawar
Peshawar
Peshawar is the capital of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and the administrative center and central economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan....

, Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 
Arbab Niaz Stadium
Arbab Niaz Stadium
Arbab Niaz Stadium is a Test cricket ground in Peshawar, Khyber Pukhtunkhwa, Pakistan. It replaced the Peshawar Club Ground as the home ground for the Peshawar cricket team in 1985. The ground has hosted 17 ODIs since 1984 , and seven Test matches since 1995, most recently in 2003...

 
2003
2 11/78 27 New Zealand  Wellington, New Zealand
New Zealand
New Zealand is an island country in the south-western Pacific Ocean comprising two main landmasses and numerous smaller islands. The country is situated some east of Australia across the Tasman Sea, and roughly south of the Pacific island nations of New Caledonia, Fiji, and Tonga...

 
Basin Reserve
Basin Reserve
The Basin Reserve , is a cricket ground in Wellington, New Zealand, used for Test, first-class and one-day cricket. Some argue that its proximity to the city, its Historic Place status and its age make it the most famous cricket ground in New Zealand...

 
2003

One Day International: Five-wickets in an innings

One Day International: Five-wickets in an innings
Number |Match |City/Country |Season
1 5/19 42 New Zealand  Karachi
Karachi
Karachi is the largest city, main seaport and the main financial centre of Pakistan, as well as the capital of the province of Sindh. The city has an estimated population of 13 to 15 million, while the total metropolitan area has a population of over 18 million...

, Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 
National Stadium
National Stadium, Karachi
The National Stadium is a cricket stadium in Karachi, Pakistan. It is currently used for cricket matches, and is home to Karachi's domestic cricket teams. The stadium is able to hold 34,228 spectators, making it the second largest cricket stadium in Pakistan after Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore...

 
2001
2 6/16 60 New Zealand  Wellington, New Zealand
New Zealand
New Zealand is an island country in the south-western Pacific Ocean comprising two main landmasses and numerous smaller islands. The country is situated some east of Australia across the Tasman Sea, and roughly south of the Pacific island nations of New Caledonia, Fiji, and Tonga...

 
Basin Reserve
Basin Reserve
The Basin Reserve , is a cricket ground in Wellington, New Zealand, used for Test, first-class and one-day cricket. Some argue that its proximity to the city, its Historic Place status and its age make it the most famous cricket ground in New Zealand...

 
2002
3 5/25 64 Australia  Brisbane, Australia
Australia
Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

 
GABBA Ground
Brisbane Cricket Ground
The Brisbane Cricket Ground, commonly known as The Gabba, is a major sports stadium in Brisbane, the capital of Queensland. It is named after the suburb of Woolloongabba, in which it is located....

 
2002
4 5/54 127 England
English cricket team
The England and Wales cricket team is a cricket team which represents England and Wales. Until 1992 it also represented Scotland. Since 1 January 1997 it has been governed by the England and Wales Cricket Board , having been previously governed by Marylebone Cricket Club from 1903 until the end...

 
Lahore
Lahore
Lahore is the capital of the Pakistani province of Punjab and the second largest city in the country. With a rich and fabulous history dating back to over a thousand years ago, Lahore is no doubt Pakistan's cultural capital. One of the most densely populated cities in the world, Lahore remains a...

, Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 
Gaddafi Stadium
Gaddafi Stadium
Gaddafi Stadium is a cricket ground in Lahore, Pakistan. It was designed by Daghestani-born architect and engineer Nasreddin Murat-Khan who also designed Lahore's Minar-e-Pakistan and constructed by Mian Abdul Khaliq and Company in 1959. Following the ground's renovation for the 1996 Cricket World...

 
2005

Career Best Performances


as of 8 November 2010
Batting Bowling
Score Fixture Venue Season Score Fixture Venue Season
Tests
Test cricket
Test cricket is the longest form of the sport of cricket. Test matches are played between national representative teams with "Test status", as determined by the International Cricket Council , with four innings played between two teams of 11 players over a period of up to a maximum five days...

47 Pakistan v India Faisalabad
Iqbal Stadium
Iqbal Stadium is a Test cricket ground in Faisalabad, Pakistan. Previous names for the ground include Lyallpur Stadium, National Stadium, and City Stadium. The current name honours Pakistani poet Sir Allama Muhammad Iqbal. Capacity is 25,000. It has hosted 25 Test matches and 14 One Day...

2006 6-11 Pakistan v New Zealand Lahore
Gaddafi Stadium
Gaddafi Stadium is a cricket ground in Lahore, Pakistan. It was designed by Daghestani-born architect and engineer Nasreddin Murat-Khan who also designed Lahore's Minar-e-Pakistan and constructed by Mian Abdul Khaliq and Company in 1959. Following the ground's renovation for the 1996 Cricket World...

2002
ODI 43 Pakistan v England Cape Town
Newlands Cricket Ground
Newlands Cricket Ground in Cape Town is a South African cricket ground. It's the home of the Cape Cobras, who play in the SuperSport Series, MTN Domestic Championship and Standard Bank Pro20 competitions. It is also a venue for Test matches. Newlands is regarded as one of the most beautiful cricket...

2003 6-16 Pakistan v New Zealand Karachi
National Stadium, Karachi
The National Stadium is a cricket stadium in Karachi, Pakistan. It is currently used for cricket matches, and is home to Karachi's domestic cricket teams. The stadium is able to hold 34,228 spectators, making it the second largest cricket stadium in Pakistan after Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore...

2002
T20I
Twenty20 International
A Twenty20 International is a form of cricket which is played over 20 overs per side between two national cricket teams. The game is played under the rules of Twenty20 cricket...

4 Pakistan v England Cardiff 2010 2-11 Pakistan v Canada Ontario
Maple Leaf Cricket Club
The Maple Leaf Cricket Club is a cricket ground in King City, Ontario, Canada, about 30 kilometres north of Toronto. It was established in 1954 and operates a turf wicket facilitys. In 2006, it became the second ground in Canada to be approved to host One Day Internationals by the...

2008
FC
First-class cricket
First-class cricket is a class of cricket that consists of matches of three or more days' scheduled duration, that are between two sides of eleven players and are officially adjudged first-class by virtue of the standard of the competing teams...

59* KRL
Khan Research Laboratories
The Khan Research Laboratories ,, formerly known as Engineering Research Laboratories , is a multi-program Pakistan's weapons science and engineering research and development institute and nuclear research facility...

 v PIA
Pakistan International Airlines cricket team
Pakistan International Airlines cricket team are a first-class cricket side based in Karachi, Pakistan. They have won the Qaid-i-Azam Trophy more times than anyone else...

Lahore (CCA) 2001 6-11 Pakistan v New Zealand Lahore
Gaddafi Stadium
Gaddafi Stadium is a cricket ground in Lahore, Pakistan. It was designed by Daghestani-born architect and engineer Nasreddin Murat-Khan who also designed Lahore's Minar-e-Pakistan and constructed by Mian Abdul Khaliq and Company in 1959. Following the ground's renovation for the 1996 Cricket World...

2002
LA 56 KRL
Khan Research Laboratories
The Khan Research Laboratories ,, formerly known as Engineering Research Laboratories , is a multi-program Pakistan's weapons science and engineering research and development institute and nuclear research facility...

 v Habib Bank
Habib Bank Limited cricket team
The Habib Bank Limited cricket team are a first-class cricket side which compete in Pakistani domestic cricket. Younis Khan is the current captain of the side.- Current squad :KeyCorrect as of November 14 2010-Honours:* Patrons Trophy ...

Lahore
Gaddafi Stadium
Gaddafi Stadium is a cricket ground in Lahore, Pakistan. It was designed by Daghestani-born architect and engineer Nasreddin Murat-Khan who also designed Lahore's Minar-e-Pakistan and constructed by Mian Abdul Khaliq and Company in 1959. Following the ground's renovation for the 1996 Cricket World...

2003 6-16 Pakistan v New Zealand Karachi
National Stadium, Karachi
The National Stadium is a cricket stadium in Karachi, Pakistan. It is currently used for cricket matches, and is home to Karachi's domestic cricket teams. The stadium is able to hold 34,228 spectators, making it the second largest cricket stadium in Pakistan after Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore...

2002
T20 14 Islamabad Leopards
Islamabad Leopards
The Islamabad Leopards are a Faysal Bank T20 League team, based in Islamabad, Pakistan. The team was established in 2004 and its home ground is the Quaid-I-Azam Stadium which is currently under construction. The team is one of several proposed franchises for the Pakistan Super League...

 v Peshawar Panthers
Peshawar Panthers
The Peshawar Panthers are a Twenty-20 Cup team based in Peshawar, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. The team was established in 2004 and its home ground is Arbab Niaz Stadium. The team is one of several proposed franchises for the Pakistan Super League...

Karachi
National Stadium, Karachi
The National Stadium is a cricket stadium in Karachi, Pakistan. It is currently used for cricket matches, and is home to Karachi's domestic cricket teams. The stadium is able to hold 34,228 spectators, making it the second largest cricket stadium in Pakistan after Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore...

2006 5-23 Rawalpindi Rams
Rawalpindi Rams
The Rawalpindi Rams are a domestic t20 team, based in Rawalpindi, Punjab, Pakistan. The team was established in 2004-05 and its home ground is the Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium. The team is planed to play in 16 franchises tournament which is Pakistan Premier League...

 v Quetta Bears
Quetta Bears
The Quetta Bears are a Pakistan Super League team, based in Quetta, Balochistan, Pakistan. The team was established in 2006 and its home ground is Ayub National Stadium. The team is one of several proposed franchises for the Pakistan Super League...

Lahore (CCA) 2005

External links