Karachi:A busy schedule forced the Lahore High Court to postpone the hearing on fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar's 18-month ban., imposed by an appellate tribunal of the Pakistan Cricket Board, by a fortnight.
PCB's legal advisor Tafazzul Rizvi said that due to busy engagements of the court, the Chief Justice could not hear and the case will come up for hearing after a fortnight. "Normally when a hearing is adjourned without being heard the court office sets a new date in two to three weeks' time," he said.
The Court has to give a ruling on a petition filed by Shoaib against the ban and a seven million rupees fine that was imposed on him by the tribunal last year in June.
The tribunal has set aside a five-year ban by a PCB disciplinary committee which had found him guilty of several violations of the players code of conduct including violating terms of a two-year probation period for behaviour.
The tribunal then reduced the ban to 18-months but imposed the fine of seven million which the fast bowler has still not deposited with the PCB.
Shoaib was allowed to return to the national team after filing a petition in the Lahore High Court, which suspended the 18-month ban until a final decision is reached but also asked the PCB to submit necessary evidence confirming the disciplinary record of the bowler.
Rizvi said the records had been submitted with the court in January.
But the fast bowler has not had very good fortunes despite the relief given by the court as he is still struggling to find a place in the national team after being dropped in January during a one-day home series against Sri Lanka for poor form.
He withdraw from the Test series against Sri Lanka due to a knee injury but resumed playing in the national one-day championship this month in which he has not fared well. Chief selector Abdul Qadir said the fast bowler could find a place in the national team for the Twenty20 World Cup in England in June if he worked hard on his fitness and form.
"He is an still an asset for the team but he needs to be super fit for matches to be considered," Qadir said.
Qadir's assertion basically means that Shoaib who was already dropped for the tour of Bangladesh this month might also not be able to convince the selectors of his form and fitness for the one-day series against Australia in Abu Dhabi and Dubai from April 22.
Shoaib has constantly found himself in trouble with the establishment owing to disciplinary issues and was sent home from the T20 World Cup in South Africa in September 2007 after hitting teammate Mohammad Asif with a bat for which he got a ban of 13 matches and the two-year probation period.