Asif trying to hire British sports medicine expert to defend him in dope case

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Karachi, July 24 : After failing to hire well known British lawyer and anti-doping legal expert, Mark Gay who has represented high profile athletes in doping offences, Pakistan fast bowler Mohammad Asif, who is also facing a doping charge, is said to be now making attempts to hire the services of renowned sports medicine expert from England, Dr Graham Durgan to plead his case against dope charges.

Asif's lawyer Shahid Karim confirmed that efforts were being made to hire Durgan as he had the experience of helping athletes who have been failed dope tests in the UK, reported the Dawn.

"Nothing is final as yet. But we are holding talks to secure the services of Dr Durgan," the paper quoted Karim as saying.

Asif had failed the dope test conducted during the IPL held in April-May.

Meanwhile, Asif's lawyer has asked the IPL to postpone the 'B' sample testing to be held in Switzerland at a World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) accredited laboratory because of visa-related problems and since Asif required more time to prepare the case to defend his client. Karim said they had sent in two requests to the IPL for the postponement of the 'B' sample test but the IPL has neither accepted nor rejected their point of view.

PCB sources said that the IPL had indicated that Asif and his lawyer should seek help from the PCB to get their visas in time to travel to Switzerland for the tests.

Karim said in worst case scenario if the IPL didn't accept their request the 'B' sample test would most probably be held without their presence.

The PCB has made it clear it would not be offering Asif any assistance in the case and he has to fight it himself. The Board's medical commission member, Dr Sohail Saleem, meanwhile, has also blamed Asif for the mess he finds himself in. He also dispelled the impression that Asif's failed dope test issue had dented the image of Pakistan cricket.

"I don't think so because doping offences are the sole responsibility of an individual. Asif is responsible if he has failed a dope test in the IPL not the board and I don't think his actions reflect on our cricket," Saleem said.


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