Confusion surrounds player's early exit October 18, 2004

US board seeks to end rumour mill

Wisden Cricinfo staff

For some time, rumours have been circulating that all is not well within Team USA, and that the squad was not a happy place to be during the recent Champions Trophy in England.

The man at the eye of the storm is Imran Awan, a fast bowler, who was replaced shortly after the USA arrived in the UK. The press release at the time cited "special circumstances" rather than injury as the reason for his early return home.

Various reports have been circulating as to the circumstances which led to his replacement, most of them based on unsubstantiated rumour. But there does appear to have been a row of some kind when the squad were in Jamaica ahead of the tournament.

A source close to the USA board said that a decision was made to deal with the matter after the side returned home. But Charlie Javed, a board member and part of the official tour party, insisted that the incident be addressed there and then. Awan returned home, but no mention was made on the official USACA website and details remain sketchy. Probably because of the vagueness of information, rumours have abounded ever since.

The USACA are known to be concerned with the entire process and has said that it will look into all allegations, however spurious they might seem. But an unnamed official added that this was a complicated and sensitive issue, and would have to be handled with appropriate delicacy.

At a time when the future of cricket in the USA is under the spotlight, this distraction is unwelcome and needs to be put to bed as soon, and as transparently, as possible.