Shoaib's awaits decision as HC postpones his case until Oct 3

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Lahore, Sep 22 (UNI) With the postponement of a ruling on Shoaib Akhtar's case until October 3 by the High Court here today, the controversial pacer's future, whether to participate in Pakistan's domestic Twenty20 tournament, now hangs in the balance.

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has asked the Lahore High Court judge Sayed Zahid Hussain to give a clearance whether Shoaib could play in for Pakistan without paying the fine of Rs 7 million.

The seamer was included in the Islamabad team for the domestic T20 tournament, scheduled to be played from October 4-8.

However, PCB legal adviser Taffazul Rizvi has overruled Shoaib's selection saying, ''he cannot play in and for Pakistan until he pays the fine''.

It should be noted that any player not featuring in the domestic T20 tournament will not be eligible for the four-nation event in Canada from October 10-13.

In July, the court suspended Shoaib's 18-month ban, but did not give any ruling against the fine imposed.

Earlier, in April, Shoaib was fined and handed a five-year ban by a PCB tribunal for a disciplinary breach after he criticised the the board.

However, the ban was reduced to 18 months by another appellate tribunal, with recommendation of a financial penalty of Rs 7 million.

In today's proceeding, Shoaib's lawyer was not present but is expected to be at the October 3 hearing.

''Since Akhtar's lawyer was not in the court today, the judge has postponed the hearing,'' Rizvi said. ''October 3 was the earliest possible date that the judge could give.'' ''If the paceman's issue of fine could not be cleared from the court on October 3, Akhtar will not be able to compete in the domestic tournament without paying up the fine,'' he maintained.

Shoaib, who is currently in England where he played two games for the English county - Surrey, is expected to return on September 26.

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