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August 11, 2007
The Pakistan Cricket Board has taken note of scathing comments made by Abdul Razzaq on a TV show recently, though it stopped short of saying whether any disciplinary action would be taken against him.
Razzaq told Geo TV, soon after he was dropped from Pakistan's Twenty20 squad for the World Championship, his omission was "illogical" and threatened to make himself unavailable for Pakistan.
"If this is the way I am going to be treated after serving the country honestly and diligently," Razzaq said, "I should be the one now to decide when to make myself available for national selection."
Razzaq, who has taken 246 wickets and scored 4465 runs in ODIs, said he felt most hurt because no one from the board or selection committee called him to explain the decision.
"I don't know what the logic was. I am a senior player and deserve a phone call. When I was injured no one in the board bothered to call me up and find out how I was doing."
Razzaq was one of seven Pakistani players to be approached by the Indian Cricket League (ICL). "I need to know what they have in mind but I am considering the ICL offer."
Shafqat Naghmi, the PCB's chief operating officer, told Cricinfo that some comments did constitute a breach of the code of conduct. "Criticising board policy is definitely a breach and we have taken note of the interview but have not yet decided whether to take any action.
"He has the freedom to say what he feels and certainly we understand he must have been disappointed. We are aware of it but are currently undecided over any future action to take."
Naghmi confirmed that Razzaq has now received his central contract though he hasn't indicated whether he will sign it. Until Friday, Razzaq was the only player among the 20 handed central contracts who had not been in touch with the board at all, heightening speculation that he may opt instead for the ICL.
A board official told Cricinfo, "We have got in touch with him now and he has confirmed receiving the contract. He has intimated, once his lawyer goes through it, that he will sign it." According to the official the delay was the result of a recent change in address.
The original deadline for signing the contract was August 10 but was extended by five days to accommodate other players yet to sign, including Mohammad Yousuf, Danish Kaneria and Younis Khan.
Kaneria and Younis are in England and sought extra time because of a delay in receiving their contracts. Both, however, are said to have accepted the terms and agreements in principle. Yousuf said he'd been out of Lahore and saw the contract on August 9, so needed a few days before signing it.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Stats highlights from the fourth ODI between India and West Indies in Dharamsala