Lahore, July 23 (ANI): Expressing happiness over him being included in the initial list of 30 probables for the Champions Trophy, banned Pakistani left-arm fast bowler Mohammad Asif has said the call is like a "rebirth" for him.
"You can say that it's a sort of rebirth for me. I was performing well but then suddenly my career derailed and it was tough to get over those difficult days," Asif said.
The 26-year-old pacer, whose career had plummeted after he failed a dope test during the Indian Premier League's (IPL) inaugural season, said he would like to forget the past and start a new cricketing career.
Asif said he has learnt his lessons and would now concentrate only on the game.
"Maybe these events happened so that I could learn my lesson. I would like to forget what happened to me over the last two years. I have learnt my lessons and will definitely do my best to avoid anything like this in the future," The News quoted Asif, as saying.
Asif claimed that he is hundred percent fit and eager to don the green shirt once again.
"I am fit and have been bowling in the best of rhythms. South Africa is my favourite place and I did well when we went there to play a Test series in 2007, so this time around, again I want to help my team win the Trophy," he said.
Asif rejected reports that he has married popular television host and film star Veena Malik.
"There is no truth in that news. I will marry only when I achieve more in cricket and only on the advice of my parents," he said.
Asif was banned from international cricket for one year after failing in the dope test. His ban expires on September 22, the day Champions Trophy is scheduled to begin in South Africa.
He was also detained at the Dubai airport for 19 days for carrying an illegal substance (opium) while returning from India.
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) had also slapped a fine of one million rupees on Asif for his Dubai 'misadventure'. (ANI)