IPL doors continue to remain closed for Shoaib

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New Delhi, Apr 30 (UNI) Despite the green signal from the appellate tribunal to play in the Indian Premier League (IPL), the BCCI today made it clear that the doors for temperamental fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar will remain closed till the time he is allowed to play for Pakistan.

''Unless he is cleared to play for Pakistan, he cannot play in the IPL. This was the decision taken by the special general body of the BCCI at Bangalore before the start of the Twenty20 event,'' BCCI sources said.

Akhtar's appeal against a five-year ban was today rejected by a three-man appellate tribunal, which, however, said he was free to play anywhere else in the world.

Head of the three-member appellate tribunal Justice (retd) Aftab Farrukh said the suspension would remain in place but can play in the IPL promoted by the BCCI.

Akhtar was bought for 425,000 dollars by the Kolkata franchise team owned by Bollywood star Shahrukh Khan.

However, Kolkata Knight Riders today made it clear that it will abide by the IPL's decision on whether or not to allow Akhtar to play in the tournament.

''We just want to be very careful that we observe all the guidelines and codes of the IPL,'' said Joy Bhattacharjee, Marketing head of the Knight Riders.

Bhattacharjee also said ''the IPL could review their stance on Shoaib only after they receive an official communication from the PCB on the issue.'' UNI CS RAR BST1959

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