DateLine: 23rd May 2009
Fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar was Saturday named in a local team to play the domestic Twenty20 event, just two days after he was dropped from Pakistan's World Twenty20 squad for being unfit.
"Akhtar has rendered himself fit, so we have no reason to drop him. We can't stop him from playing," Islamabad Cricket Association president Shakil Shaikh told AFP.
The 33-year-old paceman, who was yanked from Pakistan's 15-man squad after a medical report revealed he needed treatment for genital viral warts, will lead Islamabad Leopards in the country's domestic Twenty20 event.
The tournament starts in Lahore on Monday.
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Thursday said they had written to the World Twenty20 technical committee for the right to name a replacement.
Akhtar, who has a history of fitness and discipline problems, missed the team's conditioning camp earlier this month and did not play in the first of three practice matches in Lahore on Wednesday.
That prompted the PCB to order a medical assessment of the paceman on Thursday, after which he was dropped.
Akhtar managed just four Twenty20 matches last year and when he returned in February this year, he was dropped from the team after taking just one wicket in the two one-day games against Sri Lanka.
He also failed to complete his quota of 10 overs in any of the four one-day matches he played against Australia in the United Arab Emirates, which ended on May 7.
(Article: Copyright © 2009 AFP)
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