Banned fast bowlers Shoaib Akhtar and Mohammad Asif may not get repreive from the Pakistan Cricket Board's new appeals committee, which starts its hearing on Tuesday, with the World Anti-Doping Agency closely monitoring the case.
PCB sources have said WADA was keeping a close watch on the cases of Shoaib and Asif who were banned for two and one years respectively for testing positive for banned steroid nandrolone in the Board's internal tests conducted before the Champions Trophy.
"There is definite pressure on us in the sense that the WADA officials are keeping abreast of everything that is happening and what we have done so far," the sources said.
"I don't think there are any chances of the bans being completely removed. They might be reduced but again we are being monitored by WADA," the sources were quoted as saying in the Pakistan Media on Tuesday.
The new three-member appeals committee, headed by retired justice Fakhruddin G Ebrahim, will hold its first hearing in Lahore today and is expected to make a final decision by December 1.
The committee members, including Sohaib Ahmad and Dr Danish Zaheer, will finalise the procedure of hearing after a discussion with PCB chairman Nasim Ashraf.
Shoaib will refer to the case of Greg Rusedski, a British tennis player who was discharged of accusations of the same nature in 2004. The British, in turn, had used the reference of Czech Republic player Bowdo Ullrich who was cleared of the same accusations in 2003.