One of the finest pacers to ever grace the game of cricket, Wasim Akram, remains a highly respected figure in the sport all across the globe. Many budding pacers these days watch videos of Akram and try to model their game around the iconic Pakistani pacer. But, not everything has been hunky-dory in Akram’s cricketing career. The left-arm pacer has also been accused of ‘match-fixing’. In fact, he himself feels that there are certain people in Pakistan who still see him as a ‘match-fixer’.
In his soon-to-be-released book ‘Sultan: A Memoir’, Wasim Akram has opened up on a few dark chapters of his life, including match-fixing allegations, ball-tampering scandals, a cocaine addiction as well as the death of his first wife.
“I probably wanted to forget. I’ve been diabetic for 25 years and didn’t want the stress. But my sons are 25 and 21, my younger daughter is almost 18, and it’s my story for them. And my [second] wife, Shaniera. They all wanted to know what happened, my side of the story, because they have heard stuff about me.
“People may talk about Wasim Akram, one of the best left-armers, Pakistan and Lancashire etc, and that’s how I’m generally seen by you guys in the UK. But in Pakistan, the rumours persist – ‘he’s a match-fixer’ – and that hurts a lot,” Akram told The Guardianin an interview.
The Guardian report states that there were rumors of Akram trying to fix a 1996 match between Pakistan and New Zealand in Christchurch and also about his late withdrawal from the 1996 World Cup quarter-final loss to India.
But, the biggest ‘mistake’ Akram admits to have made is not realising that one of his oldest school friends, Zafar Iqbal, was a bookmaker. The legendary pacer conceded that the period was like a ‘trauma’ for him.
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