One of the greatest pacers to ever play cricket, Wasim Akram remains a highly respected figure in the sport around the world. Many novice pacers these days watch videos of Akram and try to model their game around the iconic Pakistani pacer. But not everything was a bull’s eye in Akram’s cricket career. The pacemaker on the left arm is also accused of ‘match-fixing’. In fact, he himself feels that there are certain people in Pakistan who still see him as a ‘match-fixer’.
In his soon-to-be-released book ‘Sultan: A Memoir’, Wasim Akram has opened up some dark chapters of his life, including allegations of match fixing, ball scandals, a cocaine addiction and the death of his first wife.
“I probably wanted to forget. I’ve had diabetes for 25 years and didn’t want the stress. But my sons are 25 and 21, my youngest daughter is almost 18, and it’s my story for them. And my son [second] wife, Shaniera. They all wanted to know what happened, my side of the story, because they’ve heard things about me.
“People may be talking about Wasim Akram, one of the best left armers, Pakistan and Lancashire etc, and that’s how I’m generally seen by you in the UK. But in Pakistan, the rumors – ‘he’s a match fixer'” – and that hurts a lot,” Akram told The Guardian in an interview.
The Guardian report says there were rumors that Akram was trying to arrange a 1996 match between Pakistan and New Zealand in Christchurch and also his belated withdrawal from the 1996 World Cup quarter-final loss to India.
But the biggest “mistake” Akram admits to making is not realizing that one of his oldest school friends, Zafar Iqbal, was a bookmaker. The legendary pacesetter admitted that the period was like a “trauma” to him.
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