Danish Kaneria has responded to the allegation leveled by Shoaib Akhtar that the spinner used to be discriminated against within the Pakistan cricket team because of his Hindu faith.
Kaneria was quoted by PTI as saying on Thursday, “Shoaib (Akhtar) has been a legend of the game. His words are also as blunt as his bowling. When I was playing I did not have the courage to speak on these matters but after Shoaib bhai’s comments, I do. He has always supported me and also Inzy bhai (Inzaman-ul-Haq), Mohammad Yusuf and Younis bhai.”
“Those who did not support me, I will make their names public soon. Having said that, I feel fortunate and honoured that I got to play for Pakistan,” added Kaneria.
Whatever @shoaib100mph said in his interview is true. But at the same time, i am thankful to all great players who supported me wholeheartedly as a cricketer. I personally request all not to politicise the issue. Here is my statement: pic.twitter.com/8vN3Kilm4W
— Danish Kaneria (@DanishKaneria_) December 26, 2019
Kaneria, who played for Pakistan between 2000 and 2010, is only the second Hindu player to play for Pakistan, the other being Anil Dalpat, incidentally Kaneria’s uncle, a wicketkeeper who played in the 1980s.
Akhtar had alleged that there were many who did not want Kaneria to be part of the Pakistan team because of his Hindu faith, that the spinner was never given due credit for his performances and that he was constantly humiliated by his teammates. He added that some players even refused to partake food with Kaneria.
Kaneria, who was suspended from cricket in 2012 for fixing allegations, had reportedly asked BCCI for help in fighting his case to clear his name a few years ago.
With 261 wickets in 62 Tests, Kaneria remains one of Pakistan’s best spinners in recent times.
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