x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Khan hits out at the IPL

The legendary all-rounder Imran Khan said yesterday that Pakistan players had suffered "insulting treatment" at the hands of the Indian Premier League.

The legendary all-rounder Imran Khan said yesterday that Pakistan players had suffered "insulting treatment" at the hands of the Indian Premier League (IPL), and no player should take part in the tournament. Eleven Pakistan cricketers were up for grabs at the IPL auction last month but none were picked, sparking outrage in Pakistan and accusations against bitter neighbours India of political interference.

"[The] IPL did injustice to Pakistani players - in fact it was insulting treatment meted out to players who are world champions, and we should never send our players to the league," fumed Khan, who captained Pakistan to World Cup success in 1992. "Pakistani cricketers are the best in the world and the PCB should protest this with the Indian Board and boycott the IPL. "They totally disrespected the Pakistani players. If they had security problems they should have dealt with them before the auction."

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has already revoked permission for players to feature in the third IPL competition, which begins on March 12 and runs until April 25, while the PCB chief executive Ijaz Butt has also said the nation's cricketers are banned from the tournament. Former players have demanded that the national hockey team boycott the upcoming World Cup in New Delhi in protest, while Pakistan's sports minister Ijaz Jhakrani has complained to his Indian counterpart.

There have also called for a boycott of the 2011 cricket World Cup, jointly hosted by India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. Khan disagrees. "We should play in the World Cup, even if we have to play in India, because the World Cup is a global event and if we don't play, our cricket will suffer badly," said Khan, widely acknowledged as one of the best all-rounders to have played the game. sports@thenational.ae