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June 20, 2008
"First of all, I am thankful to God and I am happy to be back in my country. Now I am not going anywhere," Asif said at Lahore airport, where he arrived after taking a connecting flight from Karachi.
Asif maintained that he was innocent. "I did not use any banned substance. During the Indian Premier League, I underwent two doping tests, and cleared both of them," he said. "If I had been tested positive, the ICC would not have cleared me."
He also credited those who had worked for his release. "I am thankful to our ambassador in Dubai, Ahsanullah Khan, who put in a lot of effort, and when Nadeem Akram [the PCB's director - human resources] arrived, it gave me lots of encouragement."
Meanwhile, Asif is set to face an internal enquiry from the PCB, which earlier in the day issued a press release to confirm the case against him had been dropped. "The drug tests conducted on Asif during the investigations in Dubai were clear and negative for any contraband substance."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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