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Dope-tainted Asif handed one-year ban by IPL

Pakistan fast bowler Mohammad Asif has been formally banned for one year from the Indian Premier League after testing positive for nandrolone...

Written by Associated Press | New Delhi | Published: February 12, 2009 12:02:38 am

Pakistan fast bowler Mohammad Asif has been formally banned for one year from the Indian Premier League after testing positive for nandrolone during last year’s inaugural tournament.

“Mohammad Asif was found guilty by the IPL drug tribunal in as much as a prohibited substance namely Nandrolone was found in the urine sample from the player during the support period and the match played on May 30,2008 between the Delhi Daredevils and the Rajasthan Royals at Mumbai,” the IPL’s three-man anti-doping tribunal said in a statement on Wednesday.

Asif will be ineligible for IPL or any other international or first-class cricket until September 21,taking in the entirety of the second season of the Twenty20 competition. However Pakistan’s government had already ruled its players would not take part in the 2009 Indian league for political reasons in the wake of last year’s Mumbai terrorist attacks.

‘Don’t want stigma’

Meanwhile,the fast bowler asserted that he would appeal the ban and that he had already started consultations with his legal advisor to challenge the decision. “I didn’t take any banned substances intentionally so I am not pleased with this ban. I told the IPL drugs tribunal I had used eye drops which I didn’t know contained the banned substance,Nandrolone,” Asif said.

“We will appeal against the ban. I don’t want to carry the stigma of having been found guilty of taking banned substances,” he added.

Asif had earlier asked to be released from his contract with IPL franchise the Delhi Daredevils while he contested the charges. His appeal had been delayed several times.

In 2006,Asif was suspended for one year by the Pakistan Cricket Board after testing positive for nandrolone,but the ban was overturned on appeal.

In this latest case,the PCB had suspended Asif from playing domestic and international cricket pending the IPL decision.

Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Ijaz Butt ruled Asif out of contention for the national team until after September 21. “When his ban is lifted,we will definitely consider him for selection — depending on his fitness,” Butt said.

The ICC released a statement saying it expected all member countries to adopt the ban,which would force Asif out of Pakistan’s upcoming limited-overs series against Australia and the Twenty20 World Cup in England in June.

Asif has taken 51 wickets in 11 Test matches and played in 31 limited-overs internationals.

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