Akhtar needs Buchanan treatment: Akram

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/images/thumbnail/ver1/s/shoaib-ipl.jpg' class='caption'> Wasim Akram said John Buchanan had shown that Shoaib Akhtar needed to be &quot;handled more firmly and professionally&quot; to get the best results out of him.

Updated: May 23, 2008 12:04 IST
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Former Pakistan captain Wasim Akram on Wednesday said Kolkata Knight Riders coach John Buchanan had shown that maverick speedster Shoaib Akhtar needed to be "handled more firmly and professionally" to get the best results out of him.

Akhtar was not played in two matches by Buchanan, who was not satisfied with the bowler's overall fitness, but when the bowler got a chance to play at the Eden Gardens on Tuesday, he
exploded into action with four wickets to set up a win for his team in a low scoring game.

Akram also said he was vindicated in saying that Akhtar's performance was boosted by big crowds and centre stage.

"I had said Shoaib has the ability to perform in the IPL. He is the type of cricketer who is boosted by big crowds and centre stage. But the way Buchanan handled him also shows that he needs to be handled more firmly and professionally to get the best results out of him," Akram said.

Former captain Rashid Latif said that for a bowler with the pace and experience of Shoaib, Twenty20 cricket was the ideal brand of competition and he could become a big draw and
performer in such professional leagues.

"I am happy for him because he has gone through a bad time in recent months and he needed a break," Latif said.

Pakistan Cricket Board Chairman Naseem Ashraf, however, made it clear that despite Shoaib's good show in the IPL, there would not be any compromise on the matter of discipline when he returns home.

Akhtar is playing in India after the appellate tribunal suspended his five-year ban for a month and will resume regular hearing into his appeal against the ban from June 4.

"As far as his ban is concerned he has to go through the entire legal process. The governing body meeting has again reiterated its zero tolerance policy with players who break rules and violate discipline. So even if Shoaib does well in the IPL it has nothing to do with his appeal hearing," Ashraf told reporters in Islamabad after the governing body meeting.

"The Board is firm there will be no compromise on discipline as a matter of policy. The appellate tribunal is an independent body which will hear Shoaib's appeal and give its decision and we have to justify the reasons for this ban on him," he said.

Before going to India, Ashraf also withdrew a 220 million rupees defamation suit against Shoaib for making allegations against him after the fast bowler made a public apology for
his behaviour.

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