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Banned Afridi invites more trouble

February 2, 2010

After being banned for two Twenty20 Internationals for biting the seam off the ball, Pakistan’s Shahid Afridi might land himself in more trouble for claiming that every team in world cricket tampered with the ball.

Sources told IANS Monday that the International Cricket Council (ICC) has taken note of Afridi’s comments that all international teams are involved in ball-tampering and might decide to grill the experienced allrounder about it.

“There is no team in the world that doesn’t tamper with the ball. My methods were wrong. I am embarrassed, I shouldn’t have done it. I just wanted to win us a game but this was the wrong way to do it,” Afridi said after TV cameras caught him biting the ball during Pakistan’s fifth and final One-day International against Australia in Perth Sunday night.

Under ICC rules, any attempt to change the condition of the ball through illegal means is a violation of the players’ code of conduct and the offender is liable to be punished.

Afridi, who was leading Pakistan in that match because of the absence of regular captain Mohammad Yousuf, later said he was sorry for his bizzare action.

“I apologise to all and everyone involved in the match and to the fans around the world. This will never happen again,” he said.

“Being the captain, I should have been a role-model for my players which I was not, but I hope I will be forgiven.”

Afridi, 29, may have apologised but his brain snap could seriously dent his hopes of taking over as Pakistan’s long-term captain.

Afridi was tipped to replace Yousuf as the new Pakistan skipper within the next few weeks but the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) might now have second thoughts about picking the allrounder for the challenging job.

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