Pakistan Cricket Board on Friday came under scathing criticism from Lahore High Court for failing to file a reply on fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar's petition against the ban imposed on him on disciplinary charges.
Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed lambasted the working of the Board for its failure to file a reply on a writ petition by Akhtar against the 18-month ban and fine of seven million rupees imposed on him by the appellate tribunal of the Board.
"The board is destroying cricket. I don't know how the board is operating and I am surprised at the failure to file their reply," the Justice remarked.
Akhtar had challenged the ban and fine that was imposed on him some two years ago. The Lahore High Court had suspended the ban and allowed Akhtar to play cricket but the Board has already deducted the fine of seven million rupees from the fast bowler's earnings with them.
Akhtar announced his retirement from international cricket during the recent World Cup and also pulled out of the Sri Lankan Premier League Twenty20 tournament owing to his personal and business commitments.
The High Court set the next date of hearing for September 27 while directing the PCB legal advisor to file his reply before that date at any cost.
PCB's legal advisor Tafazzul Rizvi, however, claimed that the Judge had passed the remarks in a light mood.
"I told the Judge during recession that his remarks would be played up and give a negative portrayal of the board in the media," Rizvi said.
He said he had outlined the policy of the Board on the Akhtar case clearly.
"I told the honourable court that the Supreme Court had already ruled in another case in our favour that is similar to this one the writ filed by Shoaib should be dismissed," he said.