Shoaib Akhtar Claims He Was Surrounded By Match-Fixers When Playing For Pakistan, Felt He Was Competing Against Teammates
Pakistan cricket got hit by a match-fixing scandal in 2010 when three players were banned by the ICC.
Mohammad Amir and Mohammad Asif along with Salman Butt got punished for their role. Shoaib Akhtar on a recent talk show cast match-fixing aspersions on his former teammates.
Akhtar said he felt like he was playing against his own teammates along with the opposition every time he took the field for Pakistan. He stated that Asif opened up to him about the match-fixing scandal and how he and his other teammates used to fix games for money. Akhtar has often spoken about the lack of leadership in the Pakistan team during his playing days. He claimed he felt like surrounded by match-fixers in Pakistan team.
"I was always of the belief that I can never cheat Pakistan, no match-fixing. I was surrounded by match-fixers. I was playing against 22 people - 11 theirs and 10 ours. Who knows who was the match-fixer. There was so much match-fixing. (Mohammad) Asif told me which all matches they had fixed and how they did it," Shoaib Akhtar said on the show Rewind With Samina Peerzada.
Both Amir and Asif were promising pacers when they burst on to the scene. The fans and Pakistan cricket fraternity had high expectations from the duo, who eventually saw their careers suffer a slump after their involvement in match-fixing. Akhtar said he was upset to witness two fine talents lose their way to fixing and ruin their careers.
"I tried to make Amir and Asif understand. What a waste of talent. When I heard about this, I was so upset that I punched the wall. Pakistan's two top bowlers, smart, intelligent and the two perfect fast bowlers were wasted. They sold themselves for a little money," said the former Pakistan pacer.