Pakistani bowling great Wasim Akram has mocked at Shoaib Akhtar’s claim that Indian batting legend Sachin Tendulkar was scared of facing him.
“When Sachin toured Pakistan in 1989 as a 16-year-old, one of our deliveries hit him on his nose and he got hurt. Wo wapas gaya, patti lagaya and khelne ke lie wapas aa gaya and half-century mara (He went out, got medical attention and returned to hit a half century). You think such a batsman will be afraid of anyone. If he was not afraid at 16, will he be afraid now?” said Akram.
Akhtar has claimed in his autobiography Controversially Yours that he was referring to Tendulkar’s dismissal in the Faisalabad Test of the 2006 series when the Indian batsman instinctively walked off while fending the pace bowler’s bouncer. Television replays were inconclusive that the ball had kissed the batsman’s gloves, which to Akhtar was a sign that the batsman was not comfortable facing him. Akhtar also targeted Akram and commented on several controversial issues including ball tampering.
The 45-year-old former Pakistani skipper rubbished it as a gimmick to sell the book.
“Book bechni hai, publicity chahiye, isilie ye sab kuch bol raha hai (He has to sell his book, wants publicity. All this is just to sell his book). And th e media will ensure his book becomes the bestseller,” added the pace great.
“The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) is right in what they have said. I completely back them. He used to cause problems when he was in the team and now that he is out of the team he has still not given up; he is still causing problems,” said Akram.
“I cannot help with whatever he comments on. It is his life; let him do whatever he wishes to,” said Akram, the only fast bowler to have clinched 500 wickets in ODIs.
Akhtar had said on Friday that Akram was one of the main obstacles in his career.
“The biggest reason for his failure was himself. Not me. He himself has ruined his career,” retorted Akram.